A mule is a hybrid animal, which is created by the mating of a jack (male donkey) with a mare (female horse). A female mule, known as hinny, is formed as the result of the breeding between a jennet (female donkey) and a stallion (male horse). Hinny is much rarer in comparison to a mule, owing to the fact that it is difficult to produce hinny. Though the breeding process is different, mule and hinny look similar in appearance. Since the prehistoric times, mule is being used as a ‘pack and draft’ animal. It is also used for riding, farming and transportation of agricultural products. The animal finds great use in United States. It was George Washington who first bred mule in United States and now, it is mainly found in the southeastern states. We bring you some more interesting facts and amazing information on mules, in the below lines.
Facts About Mule
Species: E. caballus + E. asinus
Weight: 363 - 454 kg
Lifespan: 30 to 50 years
Interesting & Amazing Information On Mules
- Mule shares many of the characteristics of its parents. It has a short thick head, short mane, thin limbs and small hooves, like that of a donkey. It resembles horse in terms of height, neck, croup, teeth and body shape.
- Mule is similar to both donkey and horse, not only in terms of appearance, but also in nature and behavior. It is highly patient, sober and tolerant like a donkey and courageous, vigorous and strong like a horse.
- The coat of a mule is almost similar to that of a horse. It comes in a variety of colors, like black, grey, sorrel and bay. The less common colors are white, palomino, buckskin, roans and dun.
- The mules produced from Appaloosa mares are known to be have their coat in wild colors.
- A mule looks more or less like a donkey. However, it does not sound like either of its parents. Its cry is mixture of a horse’s and donkey’s sound, as in the sound is similar to that of a donkey, while the whining characteristics of those of a horse.
- A mule’s size and its capacity to do work depend on its breeding. It can be light, medium or heavy weight, depending on the mare used for breeding.
- All mules and most of the hinnies are infertile in nature. However, several hinnies are seen reproducing offspring, when mated with a purebred horse or donkey.
- A mule has hard skin, which is not much sensitive to sun and rain. It has hard hooves and can carry large weights on its back. It is naturally resistant to diseases and insects. Hence, it is more preferred to horses.
- The animal can strike with any of its hooves and that too in any direction, including sideways.
- In comparison to its parents, mule is more intelligent. It is highly curious in nature and generally does not allow the rider to lead it into any dangerous path.
- Mule tends to eat less than a horse of the same size.
- Generally, a mule can carry “dead weight” up to 20% of its body weight, which consist of non-living things. When it comes to ‘live weight”, like a rider, it can carry up to 30% of its body weight.