Visit the Corolla Wild Horse Fund Museum and Store . The Corolla Wild Horse Fund is the not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) charity that is responsible for the care and protection of the wild horses roaming the northernmost beaches of the Outer Banks. Our museum contains exhibits of the horses’ historic and cultural significance and our gift shop is filled with mission-related items that are sure to please horse lovers of all ages. Check our online events calendar for fun and educational activities from May through October. New this year, we will open our rescue farm for Member Mornings at the Farm – an event scheduled weekly for visitors to see our work with the 16 rescue horses that are under our care. Also, check our online calendar for dates and locations of scheduled Meet a Mustang and Paint a Mustang events throughout the season. Open year-round. All proceeds benefit the Fund and its work to protect, conserve and responsibly manage the Corolla wild horses.
What does the Corolla Wild Horse Fund do? Management includes monitoring herd and individual horse health; 24/7, 365 days a year emergency response and rescue; population control; breed conservation; maintenance of an off-island rescue facility; gentling and training of horses removed from the wild as a result of a life-threatening illness or injury; nationwide adoption program; fence and cattle guard maintenance; and research studies. Our support programs include public education, advocacy, habitat preservation, and children’s programs
What motivated the group to form? Prior to 1985, the stretch of road between Duck and Corolla remained unpaved and infrequently traveled. The paved road was finished that year, and from that time until 1996, twenty horses were killed or seriously injured by vehicles. Paving the road allowed for major development and tourism, and led to more and more contact between wild horses and humans–and their vehicles. A group of citizen-volunteers came together to try to change this tragic, destructive pattern.
“The Sanctuary” and the Sound-to-Sea Fence The early founders of CWHF researched and attempted several strategies to stop horse fatalities caused by traffic on Highway 12 between Duck and Corolla. In the end, the most effective solution, although controversial, was to move the remaining twenty horses north of the paved road–to the “4×4 area.” No one was certain just how many wild horses were already in the unpaved area north of Corolla. By 1997, CWHF completed the southern sound-to-sea fence at the end of the hard road and the wild horses were relocated to the new “sanctuary.” The northernmost fence is eleven miles north of the road terminus on the Virginia state line. Unfortunately, for the horses, development continues to push north. Although referenced as a wild horse “sanctuary”, the 7,544 acres accessible to the horses is actually a mix of 1/3 public land and 2/3 private land. There are 3,500 platted lots with about 25% of the northern beaches currently developed. The beach itself is considered public road, and it is open to the public. It is the only access for residents and visitors to Swan Beach, North Swan Beach, and Carova, the growing communities north of the hard road. You can purchase the DVD, “Wild in Corolla,” to learn more about the formation of the Fund and its effort to relocate the horses. The film is narrated by Charles Kuralt and is available at the Fund’s museum store or online.
Locations and Activities The CWHF headquarters is located at 520B Old Stoney Road, Corolla, NC 27927. We operate a wild horse educational museum and store, and welcome visitors year round.
Please check our calendar of events to see what’s doing each week during the season: Member Mornings at the Farm, Meet a Mustang, Paint a Mustang, and various collaborative celebrations with local vendors. www.corollawildhorses.org
We would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group about the wild horses of Corolla who are designated as the State Horse and defined as a cultural treasure by the state of North Carolina. If you would like a representative to speak to your classroom or civic association, please email for more information (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Help us keep the horses safe! View them from at least 50 feet away (Currituck County Wild Horse Ordinance) and PLEASE DO NOT FEED! It is against the law and carries a substantial fine. Moreover, feeding can be fatal. The wild horses have a very specialized diet and are only used to digesting the natural beach grasses that the land affords. Feeding can and does put them at risk for painful and sometimes fatal colic. Report feeding to Currituck County Dispatch at 252-232-2216. Thank you for your cooperation and for your support!