A U.S. breeder of Arabian horses says he is shunning a well-regarded auction in Poland this year because the experienced heads of stud farms that have held the event for decades have been sacked.

Heads of the state-owned farms in Janow Podlaski and Michalow were unexpectedly fired in February by Poland's new conservative government that is placing loyalists in top posts to ensure smooth implementation of changes the government is making. The dismissals provoked an outcry among Polish and foreign horse breeders.

Frank M. Hennessey of Ocala, Florida, said Monday he has bought eight mares at Janow since 2003, but was not coming this year because Janow's Marek Trela and Michalow's Jerzy Bialobok, who are top experts, have been fired. Hennessey said that other regular attendees might also abstain.