In Portugal, despite the important role they have always played in rural life, donkeys have been neglected over the centuries, little thought given to their protection and the improvement of their lot. They have always been regarded as the poor relatives amongst the equidae.
The Association for the Study and Protection of Donkeys (Associação para o Estudo e Protecção do Gado Asinino, AEPGA) is dedicated to the preservation of this indigenous breed and to saving this unique genetic, ecological and cultural heritage. It is also the goal of the AEPGA to improve the donkey’s image on a national level, particularly the Miranda donkey, and to contribute to its re-evaluation, creating a socio-economic model that respects and preserves this rich cultural heritage.
Characteristically, it is tall, its coat is dark brown, with thick long hair, and its ears are long. The Miranda donkey is a docile animal.
This breed is considered to be in danger of extinction and is eligible for agri-environmental measures.
The Herdade da Mata has 5 adult Miranda donkeys – 4 females and 1 male – all entered in the genealogical registry of the breed.