Horses have to stay on their toes!
Although all horses are perissodactyls, they have differed through time as to the actual number
of toes each genus had. Most early horses had 3 full-sized toes touching the ground (although
Hyracotherium had 4 front toes). Later horses had 3 toes on the ground, but the middle toe did
most of the work. The side toes dangled off the ground except during jumping and fast running.
Modern horses have only one toe.
Scientific Names | Toe Tales | Fossil Gallery | Time Scales | Stratigraphy | Home