March 2007 Report
March was a very busy month on the Preserve.

After nearly a year of no signs, the three outside stallions (awaiting completion of their own section of the Preserve) were tracked and seen briefly.

At the end of the new fire break road end where it abuts the farm, on top of an old pile of manure, a new deposit was found, maybe an hour old. We began tracking. One set of tracks led east along the edge of the forest. Then a second set appeared and at last a third, heading onto conservation area land and forest. In a marshy area, a quick flash of white and brown through the trees. Then another marshy area, another glimpse, then a scent of fresh urine. Tantalizing they always remained a bit ahead, but we knew there were three. A tree with some bark rubbed off, a single white hair. And as we made our way back, having walked and followed fresh horse paths past the eastern edge of the field, we looked back and there was a white face watching us. We checked a banana patch and sure enough there was fresh manure and some chewed bannas.

After so many, many months of not seeing them, to know they are alive and well and visitng the bottom of the Preserve regularly is wonderful. Especially after a winter of nearly continual fire on the farm and the constant presence of hunters who are banned from the farm but who hunt there anyway.

The mares continue to mystify us. What brief sonograms we get now show no signals, which means that any foals have moved down in the mares' bodies and the the transducer must be applied underneath their bellies. They don't find this acceptable. However, other signs continue to increase.

How come they haven't had foals if we thought some were pregnant last April? Mares can lose or reabsorb fetuses at any time. It's likely that as their systems slowly regained health there were losses and so setting a time frame for birth is impossible. Nunki, who mated on Feb. 17 has not gone back into season this month so it's possible she's in foal. We'll try the sonogram on her soon. There have been a lot of visitors and we want to give the horses as much quiet time as possible.

All the horses are showing 1/2 inch of new hoof growth that is perfect, no lines, rings or marks. This growth has occurred in the past six weeks or so. This shows that their forage is supplying all the nutrition they need and it is being completely utilized. Three and a half years to throw off the toxins of the farm. The horses are in top condition once again, reason to rejoice.

The tractors is running again, conservatively, as the price of fuel has gone up again. Work to inventory the contents of our Blue Hole began and painting and renovation inside the containers also was started.

We are looking forward to an equally busy April.

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