Northern Lakes

Land Conservation Requirements

Pony Club Land Conservation Requirements for Every Level

This page includes the specific certification requirements per Standards of Proficiency to successfully complete each Horse Management level in Pony Club Land Conservation, as well as resources to find the information.


Requirements: Discuss the relationship between land conservation concerns and initiatives and equine sports and horse management. Discussion may include current and future challenges from the local area to the global environment. Describe appropriate methods to include land conservation awareness into an unmounted curriculum.

ResourcesGo the the following page to learn more about how to discuss and plan specific zoning practices. This is a chance to expand on your HB Land Conservation project and start forming the bridge between equine and non-equine communities and developing a plan that is mutually beneficial.


Requirements: Provide a letter from your DC/CA certifying the candidate’s involvement in a local, regional, or national equine land conservation issue or project. This letter will be brought to the test and the candidate will discuss the project or issue with the Examiners. 

Example: "I helped organize a trail cleanup, as well as replanting various native species of prairie grass to a local State Park to help prevent land erosion caused naturally by horses. I worked with park officials and a group of volunteers to help accomplish this task, after we made a presentation to show surrounding communities how to do similar work and educate others about the importance of land conservation for future equine use. "

ResourcesStart this process early. Talk to your local state or county parks to verbalize an interest in making the equine and non-equine relationship on trails better. Talk to your local legislature (county, city, or township) to see if any equine related land is being wrongfully used, and how the political process to put restrictions on equine land use is affected in your area and how concerned citizens can get involved. Think outside the box, this part of horse management is more than simply checking off a box, it is about educating the community and getting involved in environmental issues every horse faces.  


RequirementsName the zoning requirements for the county in which you keep your horse. Know what public land is available for riding in your county.

Example: "In Washington County, where I live, there is a minimum of 2.5 acres to sufficiently own and raise a horse. There are many available locations for riding outside of my backyard. For example, the Afton State Park has many public horse trails, as well as the Washington County Fairgrounds upon request."

Resources: To find more public riding areas go to the Minnesota DNR website. To find out more about specific zoning laws in your county, visit the county webpage and search under agriculture zoning or zone planning. The Minnesota State guidelines regarding animal and property statutes can be found here.


RequirementsName three different uses of land on which you, or others, ride. If your region conducts a mounted Rally, determine who owns the property where the rally is held and the total amount of acres owned.

Example:  "The land that is used for equine purposes can also be used to grow crops, raise animals for farming, or to host a county fair. Northern Lakes Region has not hosted an eventing rally recently; however, I have attended a few on a 45-acre private facility owned by previous Pony Club members outside of my region."

Resources: To learn more about creative ways to use equine land go to the following link.


RequirementsName three important rules when riding across privately-owned land. Write thank-you notes to two landowners who support your club and tell them why you appreciate being able to use their land. If you ride on public land, write a thank-you note to the manager or contact person.

Example: "Three rules to remember when riding on privately-owned land, is always get permission from the owner first, treat the land as if it were your own, and understanding the liability insurance that the owner has taken on in order to allow you to use the land."

Resources: There are many different ways to write thank you cards, for a few examples go to this link. To learn more about rules of riding, go to the following ELCR webpage.


RequirementsTalk with grandparents, parents, instructors and/or older friends/ neighbors about where they rode when they were young and what is not available today.

Example: "My mother used to ride her horse on the same land that I ride now. When she was younger the trees had just been planted around our farm, so they offered little protection from the wind. Our farm sits on top of a hill, so now that the trees are all grown in, it makes riding in my backyard a lot less of a safety hazard. My mom also told me that the state parks around my house were not official riding trails yet, so she would ride her horse down the road or around our house, which is not as safe as riding on a managed trail or in an arena."


RequirementsVerbally list three different places in your area where horse activities take place.

Example: "I ride my horse here at Rock Hill Ranch Stables, at the Washington County Fairgrounds, and Afton State Park Horse Trails."

ResourcesBe specific in your answers, mention places that you have been before or have significant meaning. However, they can be any place where horse related recreation occurs. Keep in mind that horse activity consists of more than just riding, it can be an unmounted lesson at a library or veterinarian's office.

Page built by Hannah P., Croixside Pony Club, for her Land Conservation Project for her HB test, 2017.  Thank you, Hannah!