# Perhaps washed down with some Pepto-BismolApril 7, 2009 5:45 AM   Subscribe

Thought excercise - How many horses are there in the world? Statistics, insights, ropey conjectural maths and bent statistics all welcome!

My friend made an idle boast the other day; he dislikes horses, and intends to eat every last one of them in the world. I doubt his ability to do this. I want to throw a figure at him of how many horses he'd have to eat at each meal to get through every last horse over the course of his natural life (assuming a natural-length life can be achieved if you are eating ~60/~1000/however-many horses a day).

Anyone want to have a crack at estimating how many horses there are currently alive? I'd love to see your working. Rigorous-ity is no barrier, bad-stats fans. Feel free to factor in reproduction rates as well, if you so wish. Or don't.

No need to include donkeys. They're cool, and so escape the eating.
posted by Cantdosleepy to Grab Bag (6 answers total)

Best answer: According to Little Chef, about 75,000,000. And they ought to know.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 5:54 AM on April 7, 2009 [1 favorite]

In the US, there are apparently less than 25,000 wild horses.

Also might be more info on non-wild horse populations here, but I can't get read through the whole thing right now.
posted by Grither at 5:55 AM on April 7, 2009

Oh, also, total worldwide production of horsemeat is around 720,168 metric tons, according to wikipedia.
posted by Grither at 5:58 AM on April 7, 2009

Response by poster: Le morte - that. is. awesome.
posted by Cantdosleepy at 6:16 AM on April 7, 2009

It's nothing to do with eating them, but your horse hating friend might enjoy this blog.
posted by fancypants at 7:53 PM on April 7, 2009

I had a physics teacher that would give us estimation problems (a la Fermi's piano tuners) - one of the problems on an exam was "The Evil Physics Monkey hates horses, and wants to get rid of them. How much energy would it take to accelerate all the horses on Earth to escape velocity?"

As I recall it, I started by approximating a horse as a cylinder.
posted by NMcCoy at 9:20 PM on April 7, 2009

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