Each year on the first Saturday of August, Romagne plays host to the Fête de l’âne et du cheval. This rural fair, which can be dated as far back as 1901, gives owners and breeders of some local and famous breeds of horse, donkey and mule a chance to show of their equines in their true beauty.
Baudet du Poitou
The Baudet du Poitou, or Poitou Donkey is one of the oldest “purebred” breeds of donkey in existence. This rare breed is best known for its long tangled coat, known as the “cadenette.” These natives of the Poitou region of France known as “l’âne de grand espèce” or the big species of donkey, can make up to 15.2 hands high. It is tradition to keep these donkeys with their tangled and matted coats. Each year as the donkey sheds, the new hair growing in becomes matted with the existing hair and the mass grows longer and longer. For centuries, the traditional profession of the Baudet du Poitou was the production of mules for use in the military and agriculture.
Cheval de trait Poitevin Mulassier
Developed alongside the Baudet was the Cheval Mulassier (or mule-producing horse). Mules produced from the cross between these two natives of Poitou were considered by many to be the best mules in the world. In its heyday, the Poitou region of France produced many thousands of mules which were sold all over Europe.
Other breeds taking part on Saturday included Bretons, Merens ,Comtois, Boulonnais,Percherons and other breeds of donkey & mule.