Importance of the Asil-SE – why does the Asil-SE deserve protection?

Where does the Asil, Straight Egyptian Arabian come from?  This breed which is named “the winged” and how did it develop?  Many books have been written about the Asil-SE Arabian and they are written about in poetry, woven throughout culture and tradition and science and research about the Asil-SE has been published.

The Bedouin’s have bred the Asil-SE since the 7th century anno Domini. This is why the Asil Arabian is considered the oldest domesticated race, which was bred as pure line (without cross breeding to other races).

The legend says that the Prophet Mohammed fenced in 100 mares on the shore of a river without water. When he opened the fence the Prophet blew the clarion. From the herd of mares urging to the water 5 mares separated and hurried without hesitation to their Lord. Mohammed blessed the mares and elected each as a foundation mare of it’s own pure line. Khamsa al-Rasul Allahs, the five of the Prophet. Only their offspring should be considered Arabs of pure blood, as Asil-SE (Steinbach).

That this could happen over centuries under hardly changing conditions has several possible causes. The most significant one is that Mohammed not only founded the horse breeding in Arabia but with a series of dos and don’ts concerning the care and training of these horsesthe Prophet Mohammed sanctioned the treatment with a nearly religious standing.

When the Prophet closed his eyes for ever 632, with his head bedded on the lap of his favourite wife Aisa he gave his faithful supporters the instruction to tell everyone in the world the new lesson using fire and the sword. He devised them the Arab horse as their most important help for the holy war. So the world history became aware of the Arab horse.

What is it that makes it important that the Asil –SE needs to be saved?
It is his nativeness.

You notice that the evolution of the Asil Arab very soon found the perfect type particularly with regard to the requirement to survive withinits natural environment. So the Asil Arab is pure, and it has managed to keep it”s type up to today because it didn’t have to change having found the perfect type for its race very early. It compensates physical needs through increased capacity of wits.

The Arab of the desert didn’t have to archive a lot of its habits coming to the Bedouins because the strains moved around as herds of horses did before without mankind.

So we can find the history of the Asil-SE on it’s domestication border. Because of the nearly untouched primal horse kind it became the sobriquet primal thoroughbred. Kirsch, who had measured, wants to talk about “themed in desert type”.

Dr. Wenzler as well answered the question whether the desert bred Arab has changed during the centuries with “No, pure bred – it didn’t have to change untill today”.

This is confirmed by a bigger brain capacity. In first place is the Przwalski horse and second place is the Asil-SE. The Asil-SE has more brain capacity than any other domestically bred horse and that’s why the Asil Arab is close to being a feral horse (for this see the writing from Klynstra).

Accentuated by the author Schäfer: “In the current zoology however all feral ancestors of the specific domestic animals always have a bigger cerebric as the tame progeny”.

We can find wild behaviour within the Asil-SE. Mr. Niethammer the chief of mares of the Haupt- and Landgestüt Marbach reports that Asil-SE-mares defend their foals much more aggressively than the other thoroughbreds of the stud. Jahn-Micek writes it this way: “They can become combative lions if it is necessary to protect their foals and friends in dangerous situations”.

The Asil-SE acts as a hybrid position as a natural and a cultural race.

For this instance the nature, the scant life, the threat through exterior danger have fixed humans and the horse to an impartible unit (Wenzler).

The Asil-SE is carrier and upholder of the genetic health and is as regenerator for all horse breeding essential. There is worldwide no race in the noble and crossbred horse breeding that isn’t originated by the Asil-SE Arab.

The factors for the resounding force of inheritance of some of Germany’s imported Egyptian Original Arabs is surely found in the asile (Asil) ancestry which was cultivated with greatest accuracy over centuries. Not at least because of the in Egypt missing and in Germany less realized constitution covering efficiency tests the necessity of a consistent extraction breed which can be followed back to the Bedouins becomes more important (Bakels, 1980).

Dr. Wenzler was in favour for consolidating the pedigree of thoroughbred Arabs to Asil-SE. I sense this as a loss. That way the types of Altdeutsch, Polish, Spanish, Russian come up, which I don’t want to miss. The Asil-SE Arab is the upholder of it’s type. That’s the way it should act and as long as there are people saving the Asil-SE Arab in its pure kind, why not having other thoroughbreds?.

The idea of Asil means that the stallions are 100% Asil and all Asil-SE mares are bred only Asil. That abandons oneself to the fact that a mare only can get one foal a year and a stallion can operate in another way.

I want to explain why the Asil-SE Arab is the upholder of its type by the example of a Russian thoroughbred. The Russians breed the thoroughbred determined as a cavalry horse. With the Asil-SE Arab stallion Aswan which was stabled in Tersk the Russians were able to return to the original oriental type in only one generation.

Today’s practice is that the breeder of thoroughbred have realized and exercise that minimum every 3rd generation a Asil-SE Arab must be integrated into the breed to “renew” the type.

To pick up the thread you think automatically of replacement breeding and that the Asil, pure Arab, can be bred back. Here I have to say: The foreign blood gene should be gone through replacement breeding but mathematically that’s impossible and they can never be Asil again. When the chain of generation is broken or it has been contaminated with questionable genotype the true Asil-SE Arab is gone forever (Wenzler).

The breeders of non Asil Arabs or thoroughbreds are interested in breeding progress and development of a status.  This leaves the breeder of the Asil-SE left with the important job of PRESERVATION.  The breeders of the Asil-SE Arabians cannot afford to breed for status only as these Asil-SE breeders must only follow original type and keep preservation of these rare lines intact.

In preservation breeding it’s important to emphasize specific Asil-SE characteristics, such as health, an outgoing attitude and a good character, Arab type, high fertility, ability and motivation etc. Especially with preservation breeding one has to look after and keep a healthy gene pool - degeneration and inbreeding has to be prevented. An Asil-SE Arab has to transfer the good characteristics to the non Asil breeding. The breeder has more responsibility for the selection because the natural selection is missing.

In a script written by the director of the Institute of Domestic Animal Genetics, Munich, Professor Dr. Dr. F. Bakels you find the proof for the significance of the Asil-SE breeding in a convincing manner from the point of view of an active researcher in the field of animal breeding and the obligation to preserve this invaluable gene pool is emphasized. In a foreword he writes:
“The UNESCO has manifested famous architectural Monuments and endangered in wildlife living animals for world cultural heritage. The small elite group of Asil Arabs is endangered since a long time and only can be saved from loss by constant untiring engagement”.

It is essential to name the reasons for the preservation of these rare and elite Asil Arab horses and to make you reflect and not try to alter by trying to improve on their perfect desert type or to breed him into a model that makes him look ridiculous. 

October 2011, Rosi Straub