Zamorano-Leonés Article

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a chocolate-brown donkey with a large head and heavy neck
A Zamorano-Leonés jack
Conservation status
  • FAO (2007): endangered [1]
  • SAVE (2008): stable [2]:47
Other names
  • Carbajalina
  • Leonesa
  • Zamorana
  • Garañón Leonés [3]
  • Asno zamorano-leonés
Country of originSpain
Distribution Province of Zamora, Province of León, Castilla y León
  • Male: 145 cm [4]
  • Female: 135 cm [4]
Coatblack or dark bay [6]
MAPA (Spain) Breed standard

The Zamorano-Leonés is a breed of large domestic donkey from the provinces of Zamora and León, in the autonomous community of Castilla y León, in north-western Spain. The name derives from those of the two provinces. [7]


Donkeys in the province of Zamora date back to at least the fifteenth century. The Zamorano donkey was exported to the New World, and was the first Spanish donkey to contribute to the evolution of the North American donkey. From the eighteenth century it appears also to have influenced the development of the French Baudet du Poitou breed. [5]

The Zamorano-Leonés received official recognition in 1940, but the genealogical herd book was not opened until 1998. As with other donkey breeds, the mechanisation of agriculture in the twentieth century led to a decline in numbers and a loss of genetic identity, until only a few breeders continued to raise pure-bred stock. From 1980 the breed was listed by the Ministerio de Agricultura, the Spanish ministry of agriculture, among those enjoying "special protection"; in 1997 it was reclassified as "in danger of extinction". [5] In 2007 its conservation status was listed as "endangered" by the FAO. [1]

A breeders' association, the Asociación Nacional de Criadores de Ganado Selecto de Raza Zamorana-Leonesa, was formed in 1995. [5] At the end of 2013 the registered population was 1292 head, of which about 90% were in Castilla y León. [8]


The Zamorano-Leonés is a large donkey, with a massive head – the breed standard speaks of "manifest acromegaly". Jacks stand on average 145 cm, and weigh 370 kg. The coat is long and shaggy, black or dark bay in colour; the belly, muzzle and surround of the eyes are pale-coloured. [6] Jacks were in the past used mainly for the production of large mules for agricultural work. [5]


  1. ^ a b Barbara Rischkowsky, D. Pilling (eds.) (2007). List of breeds documented in the Global Databank for Animal Genetic Resources, annex to The State of the World's Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. ISBN  9789251057629. Accessed July 2014.
  2. ^ Waltraud Kugler, Hans-Peter Grunenfelder, Elli Broxham (2008). Donkey Breeds in Europe: Inventory, Description, Need for Action, Conservation; Report 2007/2008. St. Gallen, Switzerland: Monitoring Institute for Rare Breeds and Seeds in Europe. Archived 2 September 2009.
  3. ^ Breed data sheet: Zamorano-Leonés/Spain. Domestic Animal Diversity Information System of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Accessed July 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d Raza equino asnal ZAMORANO-LEONÉS: Datos Morfológicos (in Spanish). Ministerio de Agricultura, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente. Accessed July 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Miguel Fernández Rodríguez, Mariano Gómez Fernández, Juan Vicente Delgado Bermejo, Silvia Adán Belmonte, Miguel Jiménez Cabras (eds.) (2009). Guía de campo de las razas autóctonas españolas (in Spanish). Madrid: Ministerio de Medio Ambiente y Medio Rural y Marino. ISBN  9788449109461. p. 438–41.
  6. ^ a b ORDEN AYG/682/2013, de 18 de junio, por la que se actualiza la Reglamentación Específica del Libro Genealógico de la Raza Asnal Zamorano-Leonesa y se aprueba su funcionamiento (in Spanish). Comunidad de Castilla y León. Boletín Oficial de Castilla y León 167 30 August 2013: 58688. Accessed July 2014.
  7. ^ Raza equino asnal ZAMORANO-LEONÉS (in Spanish). Ministerio de Agricultura, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente. Accessed July 2014.
  8. ^ Raza equino asnal ZAMORANO-LEONÉS: Datos censales (in Spanish). Ministerio de Agricultura, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente. Accessed July 2014.

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