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Shunned Colt Fenced from his Buddy

Shunned Colt is Fenced from his Buddy.

Driving from Colorado through Nevada on Higway 50, “The Loneliest Highway” I spotted  what I first thought was a ranch horse grazing on the south side of the road. Then I saw a band of wild horses. I had to turn around. A story unfolded there, told here in pictures.

Co-incidentally, and specifically to this point, Dr. Kirkpatrick in his recent interview stated, “Public grazing isn’t the problem: only 1-3% of America’s beef cattle, for example, are grazed on public land. The problem is that we no longer have any free-roaming wild horses in this country: they are blocked by fencelines and man-made barriers. The horses cannot migrate to avoid natural challenges, like blizzards or drought.”  Case in point. For full article with Dr. Kirkpatrick on PZP immunocontraceptive, click here.

 

Separated Colt, NV-Photo by Kerry O'Brien

The colt is watching a band of wild horses on the right who locked onto me the minute I raised my binoculars. Skittish, the second time I glassed them, they dropped into a draw leaving only dust. This yearling stayed up near the road, next to the fence, watching them disappear into the distance.

At first I thought he was muddy. Closer inspection with binoculars revealed that he was very beaten up, unusual for such a youngster.

 

Separated Colt, NV-8918

 

Here he goes back to the fence where a good looking bachelor stallion grazes on the other side.

 

Shunned Colt Fenced from his Buddy

 

This guy was grazing in a depression that holds seasonal water, now grass.

 

Shunned Colt Fenced from his Buddy

 

Turns out all the horses are supposed to be on the side where the bay stud is.

 

Colt gets separated from band

 

The colt keeps looking off into the distance too where his band disappeared.

 

Colt gets separated from band

 

Back and forth. Back and forth.

 

Colt gets separated from band

 

Perplexed.

 

Separated wild colt, Photo by Kerry O'Brien

 

The older bachelor moves south, still on the east side of the fence line.

 

Separated wild colt, Photo by Kerry O'Brien

 

The yearling moves off along the fence line, pacing the older stud.

 

Separated wild colt, Photo by Kerry O'Brien

 

Separated wild colt, Photo by Kerry O'Brien

 

Clearly known by the older stud, they continued like that, with the fence between them, until they dropped out of site.

Seems that the problems that wild horses and burros face are endless.

More to come…

61 Comments

  1. Cindra
    July 29, 2015

    Beautiful pictures, Kerry! The colt looks pretty spare, too, compared to the older horse. Wonder how long this situation has been going on. The battle scars could be from his attempts to get through the fence rather than going over it. Seems unlikely, but perhaps… Poor guy.

    Reply
  2. Cindra
    July 30, 2015

    I hope they get the issue fixed quickly. Thank you for what you’re doing, Kerry. This is an issue so many of us have not even been aware of. I am grateful you’re bringing it to light for us.

    Reply
  3. Lisa Maynor
    August 5, 2015

    Beautiful imagery to accompany and document the story. Touched my heart. Kerry, you have really become attuned with these animals.

    Reply
  4. Taylor
    August 6, 2015

    Perhaps this colt was relocated in the same way Sarge was.

    Reply
  5. Lisa Bedell
    August 6, 2015

    If you were so concerned, why didn’t you open the gate? One is clearly shown.

    Reply
    • Kerry O'Brien
      August 7, 2015

      Not my land. Not my horse. Not my call. I reported it to BLM. Not that hard.

      Reply
  6. Lea
    August 7, 2015

    What this article didn’t state was that the fence ends several miles up the road, the wild band travels that fence line & he had gotten on the other side of the fence with another older stud that damn near died. That stud was rescued by a rancher.

    Reply
    • Kerry O'Brien
      August 7, 2015

      Please re-read the article about the colt. When I have seen the colt, he has been with the bay bachelor. Not Sarge. He has been seen on both sides of the fence. He may have first come from the band on the west side of the fence, in a different HMA, and having been kicked out, joined the Fish Creek horses. I am not addressing every aspect of this in one post. There is more to come. Also, the stud, “Sarge” was illegally removed from an HMA, when the proper procedure is to report any animals in distress to the local WH&B Specialist. When a wild horse is removed and has contact with domestic stock it is exposed to diseases, such as equine influenza, it has no immunity to, and then must be quarantined, compounding the issue.

      Reply
  7. Brian
    August 7, 2015

    How stupid! Wow. Get the facts straight and don’t project your feelings on to the horse. He does not process like we do, cause, he’s not human!

    Reply
    • Kerry O'Brien
      August 8, 2015

      Brian, no where do I ascribe human “feelings” to the colt. You seem to be confusing anthropomorphism with behavior.

      Reply
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