WF in Norway

Icelandic assessement system implemented in Norway

The first breeding show in accordance with the Icelandic assessment system took place in Norway in 1994. Kristinn Hugason was responsible for organising this show and he was also the breeding judge.

I began my work as WorldFengur registrar for Icelandic horses in Norway in the year 2000. Norway was chosen as a test country and I was given registrar access to WorldFengur. I remember that I had no idea what I was supposed to do. We were very happy that Ágúst Sigurðsson helped with the first steps when working with the database.

Sometime later, I came in contact with Kati Ahola from Finland and we had long discussions about what would be the best way to construct the FEIF identification numbers. One of the main topics was what to do with the 6th and 7th digit. How many regions should we divide Norway into? What would be wisest and most practical decision for the future use of the FEIF ID numbers? We finally decided to use the numbers that were already used for different areas (Fylker) in Norway. In addition, we looked at which regions most horses were born in and where we therefore should organise breeding shows.

First Norwegian born horse registered in WorldFengur

Camilla Mood Havig helped me with the FEIF ID numbers: we worked for many, many hours, and managed to assign FEIF IDs to at least a few horses. This gave us the feeling, however, that we were on the right track.

And finally the great day came when WorldFengur was officially opened. I registered one horse and went on vacation. When I came back, I found a message to welcome and congratulate me – I had registered the world’s first Icelandic horse born outside of Iceland in WorldFengur! I am not sure if this is true, but if it is, the first horse was Dofri fra Hjerkinn NO1998105362.

When I started as a studbook registrar, I was handed over 70 binders of papers with horses: nothing was digitised! We went to a meeting in Iceland in 2002, where I got help with the registration. There were 5 or 6 people from Norway. I only remember one person participating from Iceland; it was Hallveig Fróðadóttir

Building up of the WorldFengur Database in Norway

And then the huge task to get everything in the correct place, and to register an enormous amount of horses into the database, began. Per Oddvar Rise and Kjersti Haugholt were of great help at that time. For all horses born in Iceland and exported to Norway, we needed to scan the original papers. I then sent them to Hallveig, who registered the horses into WorldFengur. I do not know how many e-mails Hallveig received from me about missing horses in WorldFengur. It was definitely a lot!

Per Oddvar organised a charity event (dugnad) and we copied all the pedigrees and distributed them to everyone participating. All over Norway, people were using their spare time to enter horses and all the information pertaining to them on Excel sheets. We then sent them to Iceland, where all the information was entered into WorldFengur.

Pedigree Certificates, Passports with support of WorldFengur

In the beginning, we could not print the identification papers (horse passports) from WorldFengur, so we had to copy the information from WorldFengur and into our own system for printing identification papers. This took a lot of time, and our members were furious, waiting for their horses´ papers. Later on, we were able to print directly from WorldFengur, and the registration process sped up. I remember carrying multiple plastic bags to the post office, with letters and passports ready to be sent.

Back in the day, Inge Kringeland was the Breeding Leader of the Norwegian Icelandic Horse Association and he was a big help for all of us who worked with WorldFengur by addressing possible problems and giving moral support.

As far as I know, Norway was the first country outside of Iceland who organised a breeding show and registered the results on-line. This was in Drammen, in May 2000. Per Oddvar Rise was responsible for creating and running breeding shows in WorldFengur at that time.

I still remember the breeding show in Tynset in 2003 – we logged onto WorldFengur via the network on a mobile phone, and the connection was so bad! It took us four hours to register 19 horses……….

But nowadays, all of this is really easy: WorldFengur works fine in Norway and there is always support in case there are problems.

Text: Nils-Ole Gilde, Stambokfører
Photos: Mette Sattrup