Phoenix Returns To The Range

Yesterday the wild horse and burro expert for the area called to tell that he was going to try and get Phoenix back with her family today (August 30, 2007). This morning we headed up to see her return. (Click here for the post showing her removal.)

When we arrived on the mountain, we saw Teton and the rest of her family resting near the pond.

Teton family

A little while later, Stiles came out of the forest and challenged Teton a little.

Teton Stiles

This caused Teton to move the family up a little higher. Since the family looked content at this new place, we went ahead to see if we could find any other horses before Phoenix and the foal arrived. It isn’t so unexpected that we did not see any other horses besides Teton’s family as the horses have moved to some remote areas lately. It is very lucky that Teton’s family happened to be near the road on the day Phoenix and the foal were to return. Again, the BLM’s plan had always been to release them very close to Teton’s family when there wasn’t any other families around that could complicate the return. This would allow for the most stable of situations. The situation could not have been much more stable today.

We met up with the BLM horse and burro expert with Phoenix and the foal, and followed him in. It was about 12:30 by the time we reached the hillside with her family. As the trailer was backed just off the road, Teton and his family became alert and watched.

Teton family

As soon as the trailer was positioned below the family, Phoenix and the foal were released. They ran away from the trailer, smelling the air.

Phoenix and colt

Phoenix and colt

As they got closer to Teton, they started to call out to him.

Phoenix and colt

Teton and the dun mare quickly ran out to her, and the two year old colt was close behind.

Teton and WK

As the family ran out to Phoenix, Stiles ran up to challenge Teton again. The two sparred a little before Stiles moved away.

Stiles and Teton

After this, the family was able to be together and graze for a short while.

Teton family

Phoenix and the foal seemed to quickly readjust to life back on the mountain.

Phoenix foal

After grazing for a little while, they all went down to water. Phoenix has resumed her role as lead mare, and she led them down with the dun mare and her foal right behind. Teton and the two year old colt took up the rear.

Teton family

Teton and colt

They drank and played in the water for a few minutes.

Teton family

After that, Phoenix led the family out into the woods north of the pond, and Stiles was close behind.

Teton family

It was about twenty minutes from the time Phoenix was released to the time the family moved into the forest. I was taking most of my photographs from adjacent forestland, so I didn’t interrupt the family. Thus, it was difficult to get real clear photographs of her wound. Here are a couple cropped down shots of it from when she was running out of the trailer.

Phoenix wound

Phoenix wound

As I have mentioned, finding the mountain horses is a lot harder now than it was just a few weeks ago. The only other family I ended up seeing was that of Coronado (Red Raven) as they came to drink at the pond.

Coronado

I hope to get back up there soon to do some exploring and see how the other horses are doing.

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Published in: on August 30, 2007 at 9:06 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Thanks again for such good updates on the horses Matt! I really enjoy reading about them. It’s good to see that Phoenix is doing better and has rejoined her herd. I’m glad the BLM took her out and cared for her wound. I know that there are others who would like for “Nature to take it’s course”, but with so few breeding mares in the herds I feel we cannot lose her, especially when we know we can intervene. Is that dun mare with the wound in her hip the wounded horse you talked of in an earlier post? She looks well to me. From the pictures the wound doesn’t look ugly at all. And how in the world you can actually spot horses, let alone grulla colored ones, in that kind of terrain is beyond me! You’ve good excellent vision, no doubt about it! Maybe I’ll start calling you Hawkeye or something! Anyway- keep up the good work and I appreciate your letting us know how the horses are. Thanks again! RCG


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