Information Centre

This is a general guideline to Stud Book requirements and procedures.

If you require more detailed information, email or phone 04 576 6240.

New Zealand Rules of Racing, including the Stud Book Regulations, is available to download from the Rules, Directive and Policies section of the website.

Broodmare Registration/Foaling Returns

A mare must be registered as a broodmare in the Stud Book so that her foals are eligible for racing or breeding thoroughbreds.

It is the responsibility of the owner to register a mare as a broodmare after she is covered for the first time (by completing an initial entry form) and to maintain her registration in the Stud Book until she is retired from breeding or is sold or leased out. A mare return must be lodged every season even if the mare does not produce a live foal or isn’t covered. The return can be done online (email to register for this), over the phone or by completing a form.

Returns are due by 28 February of each year. Fees are:

  • $70.00 – annual entry fee per mare
  • $110.00 – DNA laboratory fee for the foal
  • A penalty of $100.00 per season per mare is charged for late lodgement
  • Fees are discounted for returns completed online or by phone and paid with a credit card

A return will not be accepted unless it is completed correctly and all fees paid.

A return is the first part of foal registration – the second part is branding/microchipping and parentage verification. Both stages must be completed before the foal is eligible for registration.

Registering Ownership for Breeding

Ownership of breeding stock is bound by the criteria for ownership set out in the Rules of Racing.

If a mare is purchased or leased for breeding, the change of ownership or lease form must be lodged with the Stud Book within 7 days of the transfer. A mare will not appear on your return if you are not the NZTR registered owner. A delay in lodging the return will lead to a late penalty being charged.

A foal is recorded as being bred and owned by the person, partnership or entity that is the registered owner of the mare on the day the foal is born. The change of ownership or lease form needs to be completed accurately so that the correct breeder/owner of the foal is recorded in the Stud Book.

If a previous owner has outstanding mare returns due, a new change of ownership or lease will not be recorded until the outstanding returns are lodged and paid for. Purchasers are urged to check the status of any mare they are considering buying either on the website or by contacting the Stud Book. 


A stallion must be annually registered for his foals to be eligible for entry in the Stud Book. The fee for this is $70.00.

It is the responsibility of the stallion manager to lodge a Certificate of Service every season. This form lists the mares covered during the season, and the first and last dates of service. The fee for this varies according to the number of mares covered. Once again, this can be done online or on a form. Under Stud Book regulations, a foal must be conceived by natural service. Artificial insemination and embryo transplant are prohibited. Refer to rule 407 of the NZ Rules of Racing.

 The covering season begins on 1 September each year. Thoroughbreds in New Zealand and Australia are aged according to the date of the mare’s first cover. For example, the foal of a mare covered on or after 1 September 2012 will be deemed to commence its first year of life on 1 August 2013 regardless of its date of birth, provided that date of birth is consistent with such covering. However, the foal of a mare covered before 1 September 2012 will be deemed to have commenced its second year of life on 1 August 2013 regardless of when it is born (i.e. it will become a yearling on the day it is born).

Foal Identification – Branding/ Microchipping/DNA Parentage Testing

Every foal must be branded, microchipped, and parentage tested by 31 July of the season in which it was born.

A veterinarian will brand, microchip and take a mane hair sample for DNA testing. The veterinarian will also complete a Brand Identification Certificate at the time of branding and send a copy of this to NZTR for our records.

Only microchips issued by NZTR are to be implanted in thoroughbred foals. A foal will need to be re-chipped and the DNA test repeated if a non-NZTR microchip is used. DNA for the parentage test is extracted from the bulbs of mane hair. DNA from both the sire and dam of the foal is required to complete the test. If the laboratory does not hold DNA from the mare, her owner will be asked to supply a mane hair sample so that the test can be completed. If DNA from the mare cannot be provided, i.e. she has died or been given away, the foal cannot be registered. Blood typing is no longer available as a means to confirm parentage.


A horses entering New Zealand must be registered under our Rules of Racing and integrated into our Stud Book/Racing databases.

An Import Application must be completed for every imported horse. The fee is $240.00 with the exception of:

  • Visiting racehorse where the period of stay is less than 3 months
  • NZ-based broodmare returning in the same season she left
  • Foals arriving at foot with their dam
  • NZ racehorses returning within 3 months of departure

It is the responsibility of the owner to lodge the Import Application, the shipping agent will not do this for you. Owners/trainers must ensure that a racehorse entering NZ has a clearance issued from the Stewards/Authority where the horse last raced. Broodmare owners must ensure that all documentation required by the overseas Stud Book is completed prior to export so that a clearance can be issued to the NZ Stud Book. The overseas registration document, i.e. passport or Foal/Thoroughbred Identification Card, must be kept in a safe place. It must be returned to the Stud Book if the horse is re-exported, or given to the purchaser if it is sold.


The shipping agent will send an export application to the Stud Book when your horse is exported. The Stud Book fee to issue a clearance is included in your payment to the shipping agent:

  • $440.00 incl. GST – first departure
  • $150.00 incl. GST – horse leaving NZ second or subsequent times
  • $300.00 incl. GST – first departure as part of consignment of 30+ horses for single consignee

In the case of a broodmare being exported, all returns must be up to date before a clearance is issued. The Document of Description/Passport is endorsed by the Stud Book and sent to the authorities in the country of destination. In the case of a racehorse, a clearance is also sent to the Stewards/Authority in the destination country to confirm the horse is free from embargo, and to advise the race record and any gear worn.

For racehorses visiting Australia, the person responsible for the horse must take the NZ Certificate of Registration with them and present it to the Registrar or Stewards for endorsement as soon after arrival as possible. Further information is available on:

Clearances for un-named horses are sent to the Stud Book or Racing Authority in the destination country.

Identification of a Thoroughbred

The Stud Book can identify your thoroughbred from its brands and for horses born since 2004, by the microchip. An application to identify a thoroughbred can be downloaded from the Forms section of this website. Ensure that the information provided on the form is accurate and complete – the more information provided, the greater the chance of finding your horse. There is a fee of $25.00 for the search, but this is refunded if the horse cannot be identified.

Breeding View 

For overseas based stallions and mares the colt/filly foal number shown is an indication of the times the stallion or mare appears in a pedigree on the NZTR database. It is not an indication of actual foals produced.