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What Do You Know About
Horses?

1

What is a male horse called?

 

stallion

 

filly

 

mare

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ANSWER: stallion

In the wild, a lead stallion guards the herd from the rear. The lead mare—a female horse—guides the herd from the front.

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2

Which animal is most closely related to the horse?

 

cow

 

rhinoceros

 

antelope

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ANSWER: rhinoceros

Horses belong to a group of mammals with an odd number of toes. That rules out mammals with two toes, or "cloven hooves," like cows and antelopes. Rhinoceroses and tapirs, which also have odd numbers of toes, are the closest living relatives to horses.

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3

The smallest members of the horse family known to exist were the size of a...

 

small dog

 

goat

 

Shetland pony

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ANSWER: small dog

Dog-sized Hyracotherium lived about 55 million years ago. This mammal was one of the earliest members of the horse family, Equidae. Horse species generally became larger over millions of years of evolution.

Question 3 of 10
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4

What do scientists think is the first way that ancient humans and horses interacted?

 

humans rode horses

 

humans plowed fields with horses.

 

humans ate horses

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ANSWER: humans ate horses

Fossils and artifacts from Ice Age Europe show that long before humans rode horses or used them as helpers, they hunted wild horses for food.

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5

How did Native Americans first come into contact with horses?

 

they captured wild horses and tamed them

 

Spanish invaders brought horses to the continent in the 1500s

 

they won them in battles with native Russians

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ANSWER: Spanish invaders brought horses to the continent in the 1500s

For millions of years, the majority of horses evolved in North America. From there, they occasionally walked to other continents. But about 10,000 years ago, horses went extinct in North America because of environmental change, disease, and overhunting by early humans. In the 1500s, Spanish soldiers invaded the Americas on horseback, bringing the animals back to the land of their origins.

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6

One of the oldest kinds of horseshoes, which were strapped to the hoof instead of nailed to it, are called:

 

hoofboots

 

hipposandals

 

clip-cloppers

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ANSWER: hipposandals

"Hipposandals" were horseshoes used in the Roman empire. Made of metal and leather, they were strapped on like sandals. "Hippos" is the Greek word for horse.

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7

Why is it so easy for humans to control horses?

 

humans are stronger than horses

 

horses can understand human languages

 

horses will naturally follow a group leader

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ANSWER: horses will naturally follow a group leader

In the wild, horses live in groups with clear followers and leaders. When humans use ropes or fences to control where horses move, they are showing the animals "who's boss."

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8

Which group of horses is truly wild (never been tamed)?

 

the mustangs of the American West

 

the ponies of Assateague Island off the U.S. East Coast

 

the Przewalski horses of Mongolia

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ANSWER: the Przewalski horses of Mongolia

There are some groups of horses, like American mustangs and the Assateague ponies, that roam freely. But they are actually feral horses—they descended from tamed horses that escaped their owners. The only truly wild horses live in plains and deserts of Mongolia . They have never been domesticated by humans.

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9

What invention put an end to the Pony Express mail delivery service in 1861?

 

telephone

 

telegraph

 

television

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ANSWER: telegraph

From 1860-1861, the Pony Express helped deliver letters across the country in just ten days. It went out of business a few days after the first telegraph began sending messages coast to coast in an instant.

Question 9 of 10
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10

Today, there are more than 200...

 

breeds of horses

 

species of horses

 

colors of horses

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ANSWER: breeds of horses

The over 200 breeds of horses living today vary in shape, size, color, and other traits. All horses belong to the same species, Equus caballus.

Question 10 of 10
Git along, little pony! Giddy-up, partner! Yee-haw! Way to go, buckaroo! You got out of 10 right on the first guess.