A new study shows horses are big business in Virginia.
The study by the Virginia office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service placing equines sixth among agricultural commodities in terms of cash receipts. Sales of horses, ponies and mules in Virginia last year generated $107 million.
The service places the value of all equines in Virginia in 2006 at $1.65 billion, an increase of 13 percent from 2001 when the last Virginia equine survey was conducted.
The survey says Virginia is home to 215,000 horses and other equines, a 26 percent increase from 2001. Quarter horses dominated the state herd at 49,000, followed by 30,900 Thoroughbreds.