February 2006 Report
Around Valentine's day one of our workmen found the body of we believe Stallion Sirius not far from the farm/Preserve border. He’d been dead for at least a month. The skull and Wing of Atlas neck bone have been collected and photographed; the photos have been sent out for comment to a person who is researching the difference between the Wing of Atlas of Barb horses and those of other breeds.

The remains have not been disturbed so far and we may have a chance to
finally collect an intact skeleton. Bones will be bagged and labeled as they become available and moved to the compound for re assembly.

The long time it took to find Sirius once again highlights the need to get the stallions into their own area and to get the health checks for the remaining horses underway. Delays with tractor repairs are delaying
completion of the stallion area. There is no way to know if much could have been done for Sirius, but had we been able to see what happened we might at least have been able to ease his passage.

Reasons for assuming the remains are from Sirius and not Hadar, (who is well into his 20's; we were sure he would die first):

-The remains are of a bay colored horse. Without actually seeing Hadar on the farm, it is still fairly safe to assume that it was Stallion Sirius:

-Sirius was seen to have a number of front teeth missing, the skull had an upper and lower front tooth missing.

-The front teeth were not at the sharp outward angle that the teeth in a horse in its 20’s would show. Sirius was somewhere near 12 years old and the configuration of the front teeth, though damaged, is more in keeping with that age.

-Hadar has never been seen near the Preserve. That is not to say he didn’t go there, but he has always been seen on the farm and far from the Preserve.

-Sirius has frequently been seen near the fence. He was the stallion that was in with the mares for nearly a year and he still patrolled the fence line.

-Sirius has always had problems with bouts of lameness. His right fore hoof above the coronet has been misshapen for years. The right coffin bone (inside the hoof) of the dead horse is horribly covered with calcium accretions that appear to be arthritic. Dr. Bailey said this is not a genetic condition. It is absolutely amazing that Sirius got about as well as he did and traveled as far as he did, he had to be in constant, brutal pain. The accretions go well up over the bone and had to have blocked movement of the joint.

-It is suspected that Sirius died as a result of fighting with Mimosa. This has been an ongoing rivalry. A few years ago Sirius left Mimosa lying exhausted on a Preserve Road. Both stallions have been seen challenging each other across the fence and on occasion the inside stallion would get out and we can only assume that fighting ensued.

This is a most unfortunate loss. If the apparent lack of fertility lies with the mares, Sirius may have been viable and we have lost more genes. We are at the 11th hour and pushing hard to have a corral built and the health checks begun as soon as possible.


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