The University of Missouri Equine Program is holding its annual online horse auction in November and has scheduled a sale preview on Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the MU Equine Teaching Facility located at the university’s South Farm in Columbia.
Students from the Equine Behavior and Training class and the Equine Facility Management and Marketing class in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources will be available to show the horses and discuss health, training and pedigree of the sale animals.
“Potential buyers or anyone interested in our program in general are welcome to come out,” said Hannah Buzan, a senior from Decatur, Ill. “We’ll have food and it is just a great time to see how the program is progressing, even if you’re not in the market for a horse. Although we do love to see potential buyers come get some hands-on time with the horses before the sale.”
Opportunity for Student Learning
This is the sixth year that MU has held an online horse auction. It began when Marci Crosby became coordinator of the MU Equine Program in 2007.
“We were looking for a way to sell a relatively small number of horses, typically seven to 10 horses,” Crosby said. “It wasn’t quite enough to create buzz for a live auction, and we were looking to potentially get some buyers from out of state, so we began looking at an online auction.”
Crosby says the auction is a way to raise money for the Equine Program while giving students practical experience in breeding, raising and marketing horses. She says the online auction has grown in popularity.
“We’ve had bidders from Seattle, Wash., to the New York area. We’ve sold horses to Texas and North Carolina,” Crosby said. “The vast majority of sales are more local, in the Kansas-Missouri area, but we do have bidders from out of state quite frequently.”
Students have put together sales portfolios with medical records, training journals and bloodlines on the sale animals. These will be available at the sale preview for potential buyers to go through with students. Potential buyers can also request the students to take horses through the obstacles, tack them or lunge them.
Horses With a Pedigree
“We say our horses come with an owner’s manual,” Crosby said. “We have every record from the time they are born until we sell them. That includes every student that has worked with them on leading or picking up feet all the way to the advanced training they are getting this semester. Those will be on display at the preview, but we also create digital files and email them to people across the U.S. that are interested in our horses.”
Five colts that were bred, foaled and trained by CAFNR undergraduates will be in this year’s auction.
Three weanlings and two yearlings are available to be purchased.
“This is a student-run auction and we do use it as a learning experience for our students to get those opportunities to work with clients,” Crosby said. “All of the funds from the auction go back into the Equine Program to take care of our herd as well as buying teaching supplies for hands-on opportunities with our students.”