UF/IFAS Equine Sciences Center
Established in 1969, this nutritional and reproductive research facility is a 320-acre complex located 7 miles north of Ocala in Marion County, the center of Florida's horse breeding industry. The unit provides the following facilities for research on problems important to the horse industry:
- Main barn with laboratory, 22 stalls, 2 sets of stocks, feed room, office, weight scales, foaling shed, holding paddocks and wash stalls for sales prepping.
- Weanling/yearling barn with 24 feeding stalls, feed room, 4 dry lot paddocks and weight scales.
- Open mare breeding facility with laboratory, holding pen, stocks, 2 light pens - 1 with teasing chute, stallion teasing paddock and weight scales.
- 3 one-acre stallion paddocks with shelters.
- Laboratory building with 3 laboratories, surgery suite, and x-ray room (currently under renovation).
- Manager's residence..
- Residential trailer for 3 UF students.
- Main office.
The Ocala unit maintains a breeding herd of about 22 Thoroughbred and 28 Quarter Horse mares and 2 stallions. Quarter Horse 2-year olds are sold by sealed bid in May or June through the UF/IFAS Horse Teaching Unit and the Thoroughbreds are sold as yearlings through the Ocala Breeders Sales annual August yearling sale..
Primary research efforts conducted at the center are:
- Nutritional factors influencing skeletal development in growing horses--emphasis is on trace mineral levels, mineral interrelationships, and bone mineral content.
- Mechanisms of seasonal reproduction in mares--key effort is to develop tools to control the springtime transition of reproductive activity.
Business Hours & Contact Details
Normal business hours: 7am-4pm Monday to Friday
Closed for lunch 12pm-1pm.
Visitors welcomed by appointment only.
From I-75: Take exit number 358. Go east on SR326 to first traffic light. Turn left (north) on CR25A. Go 2 miles ( you will pass the Ocala Speedway and a BP gas station). Turn right immediately after the BP gas station onto NW 100th Street. Keep going straight for approximately 1 mile until you reach the unit on the left hand side.
From 441 South: 441 will join with 301 close to Ocala. Continue south for several miles and you will see a sign that says "Martin and Anthony." Turn right onto NW 100th Street toward Martin. The farm is on the right, approximately 1 mile from 441.