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US foal crop for 2009 shows sharp decline

THE number of stallions who covered mares in the US last year fell by 5.5 per cent to 3,439, according to a report from the Jockey Club on Thursday.

Likewise, the number of mares bred also fell, by 7.1 per cent, to 56,901.

These matings have resulted in 31,727 live foals being reported as born in 2009 as of September 9.

The Jockey Club reiterated a recent statement that the size of the US foal crop for 2009 would be sharply down, with a further fall anticipated in 2010.

The reporting of live foals of 2009 - which the Jockey Club estimates is approximately 90 per cent complete - is down 8.2 per cent from last year at this point, when reports had been received for 34,561 live foals of 2008.

"As we announced last month, the North American-registered foal crop projection for2009 has been revised downward to 34,000 and the live foal returns to date reflect that," said Matt Iuliano, the Jockey Club's vice president of registration services.

"Although breeding activity has been in decline for several years, the rate of decline accelerated in both the 2008 and 2009 breeding seasons, so we will see fewer live foals born next year as well."

Kentucky-based stallions accounted for 38 per cent of the mares reported bred in the US  in 2008 and 44.9 per cent of the live foals reported for 2009.

Among 11 states and provinces in which stallions covered at least 1,000 mares in 2008, only Pennsylvania produced more state/province-sired live foalsin 2009 than in 2008 as reported at this time last year.




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