On Thurs. Feb.10 Dr. Robert Fritz, DVM, took me up in his 1953 Cessna 180 and we spent close to an hour criss crossing the Preserve at low speed (60 mph) and altitude (300’) and saw nothing. But then, we didn’t see our mares either and we know they are there. We did see well used trails with no debris build up, (we’ve had a lot of wind and I think the trails would be at least partially covered with pine needles if they weren’t being used) and a trail I’ve seen many times before when on foot in a favorite area of vine forage. The vine grows quite fast and unless the horses actually disappeared very recently, the path indicates rather current use. We did not see any bones, and were low enough that we could have, I think. Dr. Fritz lives on Elbow Cay, a nearby island, and he has joined us in helping to save the horses.
Meanwhile, we are trying very hard to get the tractor going so that we can do ground searches. The terrain is too rough for any other vehicle. Some of the parts that need be removed haven’t been moved since the tractor was built in 1985. They are frozen tight and we may have to remove the entire front axle assembly. But, Mr. Tom Lightbourn feels confident that the job can be done. Working in rain and chill doesn’t make things easy, but it’s better than a 90 degree day in August!
We’ve posted a new video on YouTube, a short view of the mares running up for their grain; we added the same segment in slow motion for anyone interested in what they’re doing with their feet. Nothing special, but fun to look at. At YouTube, <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzfxYTE7ZIM>
or, Right here: