Maryland registers strong increase in mares bred

By: Tom LaMarra

Posted: Oct. 20, 2016

Of the top 10 states in terms of Thoroughbred mares bred through Oct. 15 of this year, Maryland recorded the highest year-over-year increase at 15.8%, according to the Report of Mares Bred released by The Jockey Club Oct. 20.

Overall in North America, 1,423 stallions covered 33,746 mares in 2016, according to the latest statistics. The Jockey Club said it expects another 2,000-3,000 mares will be reported as having been bred during the 2016 breeding season.

Compared with Oct. 15, 2015, the number of mares bred dropped 2.5% from 34,627 while the number of stallions was down 1.8% to 1,449.

In Maryland, where the breeding industry is rebounding after a period of decline, the number of mares bred reported thus far is 913 compared with 788 for 2015. The number of stallions, 32, is down from 36 in 2015, according to The Jockey Club.

Of the top 10 states or provinces by mares bred, the only one with an increase other than Maryland was Kentucky–1.7% to 17,750 mares bred; the state regularly accounts for about half of all mares bred in North America.

Of the other states in Mid-Atlantic or Northeast regions, the number of mares bred (1,510) New York is down 2.8% from last year, while Pennsylvania took the biggest hit with a 22% decline to 489 from 627. The number of stallions in both states held steady at 55 and 41, respectively.