The Balnagown Stud started showing
Shetlands in 1973, initially in miniature turnouts and then in
Shetland classes with the purchase of
Roseville Hercules, who was an astronomical 7hh, but that didn't stop him
taking a blue at Melbourne.
The stud took on a direction in the mid 70's that encompassed big, black
and bloodlines. Several mares were purchased from the Koolangatha and
Lanark studs, including Koolangatha Pollyanna and Lanark Nifty, who were
both successful in the show ring, and as broodmares. In 1980 youngstock were purchased from Shady Glen and Mulwaree studs,
including the colt Shady Glen Supreme (Junior Champion at the Victorian
Stud Show, 1983), and Mulwaree Lois (Junior Champion at Melbourne Royal,
1983). Over the ensuing years several more mares and stallions would add
to the stud. As fewer imported ponies arrive in Australia, we believe it is important to save the old bloodlines and are searching for ponies with
bone and good shetland qualities.
The most important characteristics of the Shetland pony to us is not only conformation, but movement and temperament. Versatility is paramount to
a good pony in our view, and our ponies have been successful in saddle,
harness, as kids ponies, pony club, cross country, farm work, stock work,
and schoolmasters. To us the Shetland is not something to be discarded if
it doesn't win a blue ribbon or is the wrong colour.
The Glen Ardan Stud arose from some of the family relocating to
Queensland and commencing showing there. With the return to Victoria,
both studs are neighbours and have invested in 11 more ponies in 2005/06
of varying colours for the future.