Icelandic Horse Acclimatization to Latitude and Size of Island
Acclimatization is the physiological adaptation of an animal to changes in
climate or environment, such as light, temperature, or altitude.
Icelandic Horses (Ponies) became adapted to Iceland over many centuries.
There are two "laws" of nature that are reflective in the pony's adaptation
Bergman and Allen's Rules says that the farther north you go, the shorter
the ears and stumpier the limbs you get on animals, whereas the farther
south you go, the longer the ears and limbs. This law basically says that
body morphology reflects climate in predictable ways.
Heany's Rule states that at high latitudes, the size of animals will relate
to the size of the island upon which they are found (even if the island is a
What will happen to the pony as the breed is changed by Iceland? Will the
larger size be detrimental to it's health? Will changes affect things that
were not intentionally meant to be changed?
For instance, what if the ears get bigger, but then are damaged by the cold.