Coming Out of Winter: What Spring Reveals

We need the tonic of wildness…At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature. Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or Life in the Woods

The winter of 2022-23, brought conditions that limited trips to the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range. Snow pushes the wild horses off the upper elevations into the vastness of the mid-elevations, largely hidden away from human eyes. This is when Thoreau’s quote becomes appropriate as Pryor wildness becomes truly unfathomable…not truly understood. The lives of many of the Pryor Horses during winter remain mysterious and unexplorable until winter releases its firm grip on the land.

Lower Sykes – November 11, 2022

By mid-November 2022, even the lower elevations were covered by a blanket of white. Adventures into these lands were possible through most of the winter. The horses were well prepared with their thick double-layered coats. It is a quiet time, and care is taken not to disturb natural horse behavior and cause undue stress. The horses spend much of their time seeking out food in the desert lands…seeking out shelter from the persistent winds. Treks into the lower areas of the horse range made it possible to explore and learn about many of the bands of horses to see how they were faring during a time of harsh weather.

Going into winter, the Pryor Herd was large with just over 200 horses. Little-by-little, with the passage of time, most of the horses were accounted for with the winter visits of a group of dedicated horse watchers. We work as a team to monitor the horses throughout the year. But for a handful of horses, patience was a necessity as we waited for winter to release its firm grip to allow spring to reveal the secrets of those horses not visible to human eyes. While hard to show every horse, this post will capture the springtime reveals. It will be a growing post so check back as more photographs and information are added.

Demure and Vintage: Demure and her daughter, Vintage, were with Missoula for quite some time. In December 2022, they disappeared from that band and had moved to Banjo Paterson’s band. However, soon they were listed as “in transition” as they disappeared from view. On March 17, Katie and I were intent on getting up Burnt Timber Ridge Road as far as possible. It was then that we saw the challenge for the mare, Demure, and her two-year old daughter, Vintage, by three young bachelor stallions: Sirius, Ryden, and Tapadero. Demure was showing the effects of her age and continued nursing of her daughter. The mother/daughter pair were seen again on May 3 now with Sirius and Ryden…still not sure which stallion was at the helm.

Valentina: What started out to be one of the most poignant stories of the winter of 2022-23 was that of Valentina. The story began with concern for the beautiful smoky black filly, but ended up with a remarkable ending. Valentina was the first daughter of the mare, Prospera, and stallion, Mica/MatoSka. After the birth of her sister, Wind River, Valentina, became somewhat isolated from her mother. It was late fall when Mica’s band was in the lower areas of Sykes Ridge. By then it was noticed that Valentina was not with her band. The word was put out to the Watchers, with no success at finding the young Valentina. Then on April 28, from my vantage point on Cheyenne Flats, I noticed a small, dark horse in a remote area between me and Sykes Ridge. This area, known as Mateo’s Island, is a large grassy land formation between Burnt Timber Ridge and Sykes Ridge. With lots of scoping it was a surprise to see that the horse was Valentina. This little horse all alone in this big land generated lots of questions. The big questions were, “How long had she been there?” and “Had she been alone all this time?”

The next day, Phyllis headed up to Cheyenne Flats. She was able to spot Valentina in the same area that she was in the day before. Phyllis, being quite an adventurer, decided to see if she could hike over to Valentina to get a closer look. This is no easy hike, but Phyllis was successful and soon found the young filly. In her words, Phyllis said, “She actually looks better this spring than she did last spring.” The photograph shows the two-year old has good body condition and is starting to shed her winter coat.

After that Valentina was not spotted on her secluded island. Of course, worry sets in. But, yet another chapter of Valentina’s life was about to begin. Once again, it is Phyllis who provided this report. This time the calendar had shifted to May 20. Seeing Valentina now, in turn, solved another of winter’s mysteries. Valentina was with the veteran stallion, Horizon. He had not been seen since the stallion, Quaid, took his band sometime during the winter. And now, Valentina, is under the protective care of a wise stallion.

Gringo, Juniper & Wonder: These three have been on the radar for much of the winter. It was on February 11, 2023 when Scott first reported that Patriot’s band had expanded to include two more members. He had seen them from a distance and wasn’t sure on the newcomers. On February 17, 2023, Katie and I headed out to check things out at the Admin Pasture and see how far we could get up Burnt Timber. And there, in the Admin Pasture, right near the fence line we found Patriot and his mares, Aurora and Graciana. We could see that Beulah and Galadriel were now with young Patriot. To make things even more interesting, Patriot’s little brother, Rio-Rue, was in pursuit of the band.

February 17, 2023: Patriot’s band from left-to-right: Beulah, Galadriel, Aurora, Graciana, and Patriot

This situation brought about yet another winter unknown….where were Gringo, Juniper, and Wonder. It seemed hard to believe that Beulah and Galadriel would leave Gringo. Both had been with Gringo for many years. In fact, Galadriel and Gringo shared the same natal band as their sire was the handsome bay stallion, Duke. So it was a puzzle to think they had moved onto Patriot’s band. Throughout the rest of February, into March, and all through April, eyes were intent on finding Gringo and the beautiful buckskin pair of Juniper and her daughter, Wonder. The fear of losing them just was incomprehensible after the loss of Juniper’s daughter, Talia, and Talia’s foal just a year ago.

And then….on May 19, 2023, I received a text and a photo from Jack…it was Juniper and Wonder! Juniper’s body condition is typical of nursing mares at this time of the year. The good spring grasses will build her up in no time. What’s more, Beulah and Galadriel were back with them. And…Gringo was in the area too. Throughout the rest of the weekend, Jack reported a lot of commotion with the band. Gringo was being challenged with the verdict still out on which challenging stallion had the band at the end of the day. But the good news was, Gringo, Juniper, and Wonder made it through the winter.

May 19, 2023: Mare Reunion – Juniper and Wonder (right) back together with Beulah and Galadriel.
Published in: on May 28, 2023 at 8:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range: Joint Herd Management Plan Revision Wild Horse Gather Plan, and Proposed RMP Plan Amendment

On March 15, the BLM-Billings Field Office released the EA for the plans listed above. This opened up a 30-day comment period which lasts until April 14, 2023. Your comments are very important. The BLM is looking for good, substantive comments as they prepare the final decision for the plans.

First off, the link below to the BLM ePlanning site will take you to the documents. Look for the section: 30-day Comment Period on Preliminary EA. The main document is clear at the bottom. It is the 2022 Pryor Mountain HMAP. Be forewarned…these documents are not easy to read. The entire plan strictly adheres to wild horse law and BLM Policy/Guidance. In addition, it uses technical concepts of genetics and range management. This makes for a pretty challenging read.

The Mustang Center has been working to read and understand the various parts of the plan and the appendices. We will provide main topics for you to review along with recommendations we have in regards to those topics. We will also add pages to guide you to the sections within the HMAP or the related appendix.

Big Picture Observation…Movement from a Specialized Plan: This Herd Management Plan has its roots way back to 2020 when the scoping notice was released. Perhaps the strength of that plan was this sentence from the introduction: Due to monitoring and documentation of the Pryor Mountain wild horses, management within the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range JMA can be more specialized than that of most BLM managed herd management areas.

Unfortunately, this statement was removed from the current document. The strict adherence to BLM guidance has moved from a specialized plan to a very standardized plan that is common in wild horse ranges across the country. These plans often rely on statistical measures rather than onsite observation and real-time documentation of the horses. This concept will be discussed within other topics as we proceed.

RMP Amendment (page 5-7): BLM lands are managed in accordance with Resource Management Plans. The plans establish how the lands will be used for different purposes. The BLM Billings Field Office RMP has three main management goals and nine management decisions (MD) that specify how the BLM should manage the Pryor horses. Due to a 2018 court order, it was determined that MD 7 needed to be amended. The intent of this management decision was for genetic diversity.

So the BLM made a radical departure and are proposing an amendment that changes genetic management to the use of a statistical measure, Observed Heterozygosity (HO). This is one example of how a specialized plan using bloodlines was changed to the use of a statistical measure. All you really need to know is there is a certain level for HO and if the level drops lower than that level, one of three actions would happen:

  • Maximize the number of fertile, breeding age wild horses (6-15).
  • Adjust the sex ratio in favor of males.
  • Introduce mares or stallions from other wild horse HMAs.

Concerns: This is a reactive measure and remedies are taken after the damage is done when the levels dip too low.


  • Engage in ongoing monitoring of mare lineage charts (aka bloodlines), to ensure that no lines are being eliminated or over represented. The mare lineages are unique for each founding mare. The Mustang Center has a full set of lineage charts for the current horses on the range.
  • Use the mare lineage charts as a proactive way to manage genetics. The use of observed heterozygosity can then be monitored periodically to ensure that it is meeting the desired level.
This is an example of a mare lineage chart that shows successive generations from left to right.

AML – Appropriate Management Level (Appendix C Page 1): This one is a tough one as it has the potential for major impacts to the population. Appropriate Management Level (AML) defines carrying capacity of the horse range. It is the number of horses that the land can support. The AML has been recalculated a number of times throughout the years. It is a range of numbers from high to low.

The AML has changed through the past years as a result of recalculations. The upper limit is the maximum number of wild horses. The lower number is the number that allows the population to grow to the upper limit (over a 4-5 year period) without any interim gathers. So essentially, you manage for the low end. When it gets to the high end…you have a gather.

  • 2009 Herd Management Area Plan: 90 – 120 horses
  • 2016 Recalculation: 98 – 121 horses
  • Current EA Recalculation: 108 – 121 horses


  • The current population of the Pryors is just over 200.
  • What will the ten-year plan look like as the population is moved to the low end of AML?
  • The BLM has set a target goal of 150 with an initial gather of 56. This is a high number and could have a negative impact on genetic diversity and social structure.


  • Don’t rush to AML. Define a cautious approach to meet the low-end objective.
  • Determine the need for multiple small gathers to reach the target number of 150 using population numbers at the time of the gather.

Gather Plan Alternatives: The BLM has presented four gather plans which are presented starting on page 13. Each plan has an objective to balance color, sex ratios, and age structures.  Each plan would remove horses with any genetic defects or closely inbred individuals.

  • Alternative 1: Continue Existing Management with RMP Plan Amendment. Selections would be based on a Colonial Spanish Matrix which was last used in 2009.
  • Alternative 2 (BLM Proposed Action): After making the initial removal determinations (i.e. genetic considerations), horses would be randomly removed.  
  • Alternative 3: Lineage Based Decisions – Selective removal criteria would be used with actual lineage data.  
  • Alternative 4: Continues Existing Management, No RMP Plan Amendment (No Action Alternative).

The appendices show the lists of horses that would be slated for removal under the various alternatives. These lists show the impact of each plan:

  • Appendix E: Alternative 1: Selective Removal Criteria (p. 1-3)
  • Appendix F: Alternative 2: Horse Gather/Removal List (p. 1-5)
  • Appendix G:
    • Alternative 3: 2023/2024 Horse Gather/Removal (p. 1-9)
    • Table 2: Alternative 3 Horses (p. 10-24)


  • Alternative 1 is not recommended as it uses scoring based on horses in 2009. This plan would remove all descendants of any horse not scoring high in the rating matrix at that time and could drastically reduce the genetic diversity in the herd.
  • Alternative 2 is not recommended due to a more rapid potential decline of genetic diversity (p. 53). It is the BLM proposed action with this statement, “Alternative 2 most closely aligns with management guidance in the BLM handbook.” This is another example where standardized practice could replace a specialized plan.
  • Alternative 3 is our preferred alternative, and with revisions could serve as a valuable specialized plan for the Pryor Horses. These are the main concerns of this alternative as written:
    • The ambiguous criteria for selection decisions.
    • The information in Appendix G shows an inconsistent use of the selection criteria. For example, Greta is considered a non-responder and would be slated for removal, as would five of her seven offspring. On the other hand, Feldspar, who has the highest current number of offspring on the range, only has three of eight slated for removal. Feldspar has not been identified as a non-responder, and she, herself will remain on the range.
    • In addition, the information in this section has many errors which brings into question to the validity of the section.
  • The Mustang Center is willing to work with the BLM officials to further develop a clearly defined selection procedure for Alternative 3 using lineage charts and other parent/offspring relationships.

5/28/2023: It has been a month since the end of the comment period for this Environmental Assessment. At this point, the Bureau of Land Management has not issued any updates regarding the EA.

Published in: on March 23, 2023 at 7:41 pm  Comments (6)  

When They Disappear…A Story of Three Pryor Horses

Let me first introduce myself to those who may not know the “face” behind this blog or the Pryor Mountain Wild Mustang Center FaceBook page. I am Nancy Cerroni, a longtime resident of Lovell, WY. I started watching the Pryor Mountain Wild Horses back in 2004. Since 2014, my husband, Steve and I have been doing our PryorWild tours where we have had the pleasure of showing hundreds of people the beauty of the Pryor Horses and the amazing land of their home. Horses are a big part of our lives at home too. We live on a ranch just east of Lovell where we have a number of Quarter Horses and a couple mustangs of our own. You can see that horses, both domestic and wild are a huge part of our lives and our hearts. I have become a keeper of the wild horse databases. In addition, I serve as the voice of the Mustang Center as we inform and educate people from all over the world about this very special herd of wild horses.

I feel it important to tell you this now, so you understand the difficult task writing this post is. With horses it is possible to identify them as individuals which brings a unique perspective on life. It is a unique privilege to witness their lives from birth to death. And try as hard as possible, it is impossible to completely detach emotions from what is known intellectually to be all part of the natural world. Bottom line, horses are remarkable creatures that have woven their way into the lives and hearts of so many. Loving these horses is the essence of bittersweet…of pain and pleasure…of happy and sad. And at the times of sadness, the pain is equal and opposite to the amount of happiness. It is the risk of loving…the chance you take.

As much as we know about the horses, there is always mystery which that is known only to themselves. One mystery is with death and possible death. So often, the wild horses just disappear. The hope is that they will soon re-appear. The reality is that they seldom do once they disappear. Disappearance and death are painful and leave question marks in our hearts. Three Pryor Horses have recently disappeared. The odds that they are alive are slim to none. Time will fully reveal this answer…yet quite honestly, we probably already know.

Mescalero and Dove – July 27, 2006

Mescalero – Mescalero was last seen during the Winter 2020-21. He was born in 1999, the son of the lovely roan, Sitka, and the mighty Shaman. My first memories of the handsome dun roan stallion, Mescalero, came when the beautiful mare, Dove, joined him. They were a pair with one of those one word names…MescaleroandDove.

Through time his band changed and offspring were born. As he moved into prime and beyond, he had quite a band with mares such as Polaris, Isadora, Rosarita, Half Moon, Topper Too, and Feldspar. He had a fine set of offspring as well, with Quintana and Sirius still on the mountain today.

Mescalero lost his band in 2019 to the dun roan, Okomi. From that time, Mescalero was visible on the Range, hanging out with others or just living the life of a lone stallion. As happens with aging stallions, they go into winter, but never come out. In 2020, Mescalero was seen in the late fall meadows on top of the mountain. At this point in 2021, he hasn’t been spotted. This indicates that the stallion is most likely gone as he surely would have been seen by now. A loss like this is sad, but Mescalero’s is a story of success. He was born wild, lived wild, and died wild…all in his Pryor Home.

Mescalero – September 5, 2020
Usha and Morning Reverie – June 13, 2020

Usha – Little Usha is on the other end of life’s spectrum from Mescalero. Her life was just beginning on the Pryor Mountains. She was born to the young mare, Morning Reverie. The young mare was with her mother, Hataalii, along with the dynamic situation between Killian/Echo and Orlando. Later in the year, Morning Reverie and her young daughter became a part of Oro’s band. The mother/daughter pair were so sweet…both beautiful young duns.

Sometime during the winter, Usha, sustained a broken left front leg. This was a very serious injury, yet remarkable healing has happened with the wild horses and maybe, just maybe, she would be one of the survivors of such an injury. Oro and his band put a shield of protection around the young mare and her injured yearling. They made it to the top of the mountain in late May.

Oro’s Band – May 30, 2021: L-R: Celt & Baileys, Niyaha, Usha, Morning Reverie, Manualita, Felina.
Morning Reverie – July 15, 2021

Usha was in tough shape, but she showed a true mustang spirit. Reverie stayed by Usha’s side, doing all she could to help the little one keep up with the band. In precious moments, Usha would run and buck playfully in the grass of spring. However, one day Usha was there and the next she wasn’t. This mustang made a valiant effort, yet healing was not to be. Morning Reverie has carried on without her foal. The truth of the matter is the injured foal was taking a toll on her own health. Since then, Morning Reverie has regained her strength. She is strong and healthy and surrounded by a very protective band who has helped her every step of the way. Usha, the little spark of dun touched many hearts and will not be forgotten.

Oceana – And then we come to Oceana…the third that has recently disappeared. Oceana, beautiful copper-colored Oceana, is another wild horse that just disappeared virtually overnight. It was obvious through spring and early summer that Oceana was in foal. She has been with the stallion, Jasper/Jack, for quite some time now, along with her two-year old son, Titan.

Jasper’s Band – June 16, 2021: L-R: Lariat, Petite Colour, Titan, Oceana, Sequoyah, Jasper, Ketchikan.
Oceana – July 10, 2021 Photo by Brittny Budde

She was seen and photographed on Saturday, July 10, 2021.

By Monday, July 12, she was missing from Jasper’s band. At that point, there was optimism that she was just off having that baby. Next day…no sign of her. The hope then was that somehow she had joined up with Grijala, her former stallion and the sire of her son, Titan. A day later, Grijala was with a band of young bachelors kicking up action in the Mystic Pond area. No sorrel colored mare was with him. Almost daily sightings of Jasper’s band showed Titan quite content and surrounded by a band of mares who have been his family since birth. We have accounted for every stallion on the mountain except Johan who keeps to himself on mid-Sykes Ridge. The chances that Oceana is with him are slim. The other possibility is that she is off on her own with her foal. This has been known to happen on occasion in the Pryors.

Oceana – October 2014

I carry a flicker of hope with me. I have her listed as “In Transit” on my list with the hopes that something unusual has happened and that she just re-appears one day with her shiny coat and a brand-new foal. Intellectually I know the chances that she is gone are overwhelming…but for now. I hold onto that hope. The hope is for the bright colored little filly who jetted across the mountain meadow in October of 2014 when she was born to the mare, Galadriel. She and Okiotak came at the same time into the same band…both little sorrels who survived their late fall births.

Hope is for the small genetic line that Oceana represents that traces back through Galadriel – Atlantis – Coppertop – Pocotello. Thankfully Titan is there to carry on for his beautiful mother.

If by chance, one of you happens to see Oceana…please let us know as soon as possible. Let’s keep an eye out for this beauty…and keep on hoping!

Jasper’s Band – July 14, 2021

Loving these horses is not easy. One must expect moments like these that touch the heart so deeply. As a friend just provided the perfect way to close said, “The wild claims the old…young…and unexpected.” Advice comes right from the behavior of the horses themselves. Morning Reverie is carrying on after the loss of Usha and Titan is carrying on with the possible loss of Oceana. My friend added this wisdom. “Try to apply the horses’ way of living…one thing I admire is… you grieve but then you move on, in the wild you can’t look back … only move forward.

Published in: on July 19, 2021 at 9:10 pm  Comments (23)  

Stallion Story

The behaviors of the stallions are, perhaps, one of the most interesting and exciting components of the wild horse world. While the most intense are the confrontations when two stallions go up in the air on hind legs, there are many more subtle behaviors that occur when one stallion works to maintain his band against one or more other stallions attempting to gain the power. Through a whole bunch of photos and a few words, witness the action between one band stallion, Chief Joseph and six bachelor stallions over the course of a little over an hour on a beautiful November day in the Pryor Mountains.

The morning began with the young bachelor stallion, Parry. He was grazing on the sagebrush land when something caught his attention.

When a horse moves into this attentive, or alert mode, it is best to take notice. Their powers of observation are keen and typically very accurate that there is something out there in that direction. Sure enough…Parry began moving quickly; first with a long-stride walk that broke into an easy-going lope. The golden dun horse looked spectacular against the red, Chugwater dirt background.

As Parry moved in the direction of the rising sun, it became apparent as to what caught his attention. Another horse had moved up from the water hole called Little Sykes Spring. This one was a stallion – a black stallion that came up to meet up with Parry. The two greeted each other with posturing movements of arched necks and high stepping legs.

Parry meets up with the black stallion

This encounter was brief as both stallions shifted their attention from each other to something coming up from the east. The eyes, ears, and body position tell the story. Parry’s ears and eyes are definitely focused on the distance. The black’s ears show a dual concern – partly on Parry and partly on whatever was in the distance.

Again the powers of observation were right on the mark as a pair of horses emerge into view. These two provided the key to identifying the black stallion. It was a bay roan mare and a dark-colored foal trailing behind her. It was Pilar and her 2020 colt, Ukiah. This proved that the black stallion was Chief Joseph.

Pilar is the 2015 daughter of the mare, La Brava, and the stallion, Irial. Ukiah is the son of the stallion, Hamlet.

Chief Joseph left Parry’s side and guided his band away from the intruder. He positioned his body between Parry and his mare. In turn, Pilar, shielded her foal with her body. The three trotted off in unison together.

This didn’t diminish Parry’s interest in the other horses. He circled around and took the lead.

Chief Joseph broke up the momentum. He cut Parry off from the forward motion. This allowed Pilar time to move Ukiah out of the line of potential fire.

Once Pilar and Ukiah have moved off, Joseph can turn his attention briefly back to Parry. The two engaged in a minor scuffle with the most action coming from Joseph’s mane.

After that, both stallions’ attention was once again drawn to something in the east. They separated and both stood at attention…such unbelievable beauty in this rugged land.

Parry headed off and left Joseph behind.

Parry had shifted his attention to two more bachelor stallions who had just appeared in the area. He ran right over to the grullo stallion, Hidatsa. This was not an adversarial meeting, rather just a morning greeting. The black stallion, Hawk appeared much more interested in his brother, Joseph, than the young stallion. Parry then continued walking out of the area.

Meanwhile on the other side of the sagebrush meadow, another bachelor stallion made his way down into the area where Joseph, Pilar, and Ukiah continued to graze. This was the young grullo stallion, Pax. He is one of the finest examples of grullo in the Pryors with his thick wither bars. At the age of five, he has matured into a handsome stallion. He has spent much of the summer roaming alone as a bachelor stallion. So as one five year old bachelor left, another came onto the scene and kicked up the action!

Joseph headed over to check out the newcomer. The colt, Ukiah, is not too young to learn the lessons of being a band stallion.

At first, Pax doesn’t seem to have much desire to engage in a confrontation with Joseph. After a quick, quiet greeting, Pax moves down the meadow toward Pilar and Ukiah.

The situation becomes tense for Joseph as Hawk and Hidatsa move to the northeast side of Joseph and his band. The next set of photos illustrate how hard the band stallions have to work to maintain their family. One one side, Joseph has Pax. On the other side, he has the two veteran bachelors, Hawk and Hidatsa. Smack dab in the middle are Pilar and Ukiah.

At first, Joseph goes back to size up the situation with Pax. Pax turns and walks off while Joseph turns an eye on Hawk and Hidatsa.

Next, Joseph moves over to check out Hawk. Both Hawk and Chief Joseph are the sons of the legendary Dryhead stallion, Seattle. Both have the jet black color of their sire. Again, Joseph is not overly concerned with Hawk and he walks back to the mare and colt.

At that point, Pax moves over to Hawk. This resulted in just a greeting and both were more interested in their surroundings than each other.

All of a sudden Pax seems to gain the courage to make a challenge. He moves confidently through the sage. Chief Joseph responds with a quick chase. Pax arches his neck, but retreats.

Joseph turns in the opposite direction and lopes back to make sure his band is safe from the other bachelors.

He moves closer to Hawk and gives the reminder of who is in charge here. Hawk obliges without a bit of hesitation.

There is no rest for Joseph. He turns back and notices Pax moving in again. Joseph breaks into a run and moves past Pilar and Ukiah. He, then, blasts at full speed towards the eager bachelor. This time Pax shows the willingness to stay around and challenge Joseph.

After a good, aggressive blast from both stallions, Pax turns away in defeat…for this battle anyway.

Joseph moves back and snakes Pilar back to her foal. What is happening on the other side to cause the stallion more concern?

Again Joseph feels the need to get back to Hawk. He charges over, takes a second to keep Hawk well in his place, then charges back to Pax.

At first, Pax turns and runs quickly!

But then he shows himself to be a formidable opponent and goes up against the more experienced stallion.

At the end of that intense battle, Pax was done. He turned away from Joseph and moved off to the east. Hawk and Hidatsa followed behind him. The three stallions met briefly and then moved off together.

At this point, it would be good to see Chief Joseph be able to just relax, but the hour of challenge wasn’t quite over for him. As soon as the trio of bachelors moved off, Hidalgo came down the same path that Pax had appeared from a short time ago. Following Hidalgo was Sundance.

Hidalgo gave Joseph a very brief challenge. Hidalgo has been one of those stallions who seems quite content with solitude. As a two-year old, Sundance seemed more interested in finding some good things to eat.

At the end of this exciting hour, Ukiah moved over to his mother, Pilar, for bit of breakfast.

Finally, Chief Joseph could enjoy some well-deserved relaxation. This short time showed many stallion behaviors of both the band stallions as they strive to keep the band and the bachelors whose goal is to gain a band of their own. Yes, the up-in-the air action is exciting, but often overlooked is the amount of running and chasing the stallions have to do to maintain the band. It is hard work for sure, but these stallions are driven to get and maintain a band.

Published in: on November 22, 2020 at 8:27 pm  Comments (7)  
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