European Regional Focal Point for Animal Genetic Resources

Regional platform for the support of management, conservation and sustainable use of animal genetic resources

Latvia

Gita Jansone

Ministry of Agriculture
Agricultural Department
Animal Production and Pedigree Breeding Division
Republikas laukums 2
LV-1981 Riga
Latvia

+371 6702 7001
+371 6702 7001
gita.jansone[at]zm.gov.lv

List of experts

  • Ligija Ozolina, member of the WG In situ conservation
  • Dace Smiltina, member of the WG on Ex situ conservation
Latvian local goat

The Latvian local goat is the only national goat breed in Latvia. It was created as results from the mix of the local population with a wide variety of international breeds (Russian local, Megrel breed and then German breeds – Togenburg and Tiring breeds and finally French Alpines). At the beginning of the 1980s, Latvian local breed goats improved by crossing the population with Zane goats (Czechoslovakia), which was reinforced in the nineties with some new gene flow from the same breed. The result was successful and nowadays the breed is renowned for its high reproductive capacity, excellent meat quality, good health and high resistance to various diseases. It is used mostly for milk production but it also produces good quality meat. It is a medium size breed with a wide variety of colors, the hair being of medium length. The breed is at risk of extinction and therefore closely monitored by the Latvian government bodies.

Latvian local goat

 

 

Latvian Blue Cow

The Latvian Blue Cow breed is an ancient local milk breed. It is a very resistant breed and these cows well adapted to the poor forages provides by the coast with sandy soil feeding conditions. Now the Latvian Blue Cow can be found in the  all territory of Latvia, mostly in small herds between 10/20 dairy cows.. Latvian blue breed cows are medium or slightly below average height animals. Their distinct feature is their blue coat, which varies from frost and gray blue to distinct blue. This breed is extensive  and the highest level of milk production animals reaches at 4/5th lactation. The breed is at risk of extinction and therefore closely monitored by the Latvian government bodies.

Latvian Blue (c) L Markey IDELE

 

Latvijas Ardenis

The Latvijas Ardenis or Latvian Ardennes is a draft horse, with a small (150-160 cm) but strong and compact body. The Latvian Ardennes are characterized by a calm, balanced temperament with a tendency for being phlegmatic. They are very cooperative and easy learner. The constitution of their body is heavy and  strong.

The breed is used mostly for all types of agricultural work but also reiterotherapy, or even riding classes as his temperament is great for beginners riders. The mares are good milk producers which is why they are also used for milk production.

Latvijas ardena

 

Latvijas Baltā

The Latvijas Baltā or Latvian white pig breed was created in the 20th century by improving local pigs with the Great White (Yorkshire) breed. The Latvian White Pig breed was recognized as a breed in 1967 for bacon production.

The typical characteristics of Latvian white pigs are white skin color, small steep ears slightly pointed to the side, strong body structure, and a heavy life weight.

The breed is acknowledged for its high stress resistance, vitality, good “mother” characteristics, high milk yield, low aggression, high fertility, good piglet preservation skill, high feed conversion and excellent meat sensory properties.

Latvijas Balta

Latvian horse breed

The Latvian horse breed, which is the common horse breed in Latvia, selected by Latvian farmers with two types – riding and spor The local small horses of Vidzeme and Kurzeme were known for being strong, hardy, but agile horses of small stature (around 145 cm). They were well adapted to the local natural climatic and economic conditions. In the 1920s, two types of Latvian horse were created and the local breed was improved by crosses with the Oldenburg, Hannover and Holstein breeds.

The characteristic features of the Latvian breed of riding type is their trustworthy nature and balance temper. These qualities are essential when using horses for tourism, horseback riding and horse riding schools with children.  The horses are large, with an elongated body, strong and voluminous muscles, and a strong skeleton.

Latvian horse breed