December 28, 2009 – Stiles & Monero

I was very excited to get to go to the Monero Mustangs wild horse sanctuary yesterday. Photographer Lynne Pomeranz also was able to go too, so that was great as she played a big role in getting a home for Stiles there. We got to the sanctuary in the morning and got to see Stiles right away. He’s still in a pen now as he gets acclimated to the area and gets to become acquainted with the other horses there. His pen is pretty nice for him; it is a pretty good size and has nice trees for shelter.

He was shy when we approached at first, he moved back into the trees to watch us while he ate snow. I thought it was funny he ate snow even though they keep a water trough in there thawed for him. Having liquid water this time of year is something he really isn’t familiar with as it is so rare in the Pryors.

He eventually came out to eat some more hay. They told me that Stiles is funny about always eating every last bit of hay he has available.

Stiles has interaction with the other horses at the sanctuary. Next door to him is a pen with two younger males. I think Stiles would look pretty good running with the sorrel looking horse. It sounds like they annoy him sometimes, though; and he has apparently shown them who is the dominant stallion of the three.

Some of the other horses in the area that were feeding also came  to visit him, though he was a little shy again. I really liked the little dun pinto there.

We also spent time with the other horses who were nearby feeding. Most of them were down from Stiles. This time of year, many of the horses come in and stay in this end of the sanctuary while they get supplemental feed. In other seasons, all of these harems are spread out around the area.

The horses were fairly docile, much like the Pryor horses, so we were able to get good looks at them. It was fun hearing the stories about each of them and the herds they had come from. It sounds like some of them were rescued from some pretty bad situations before coming to the sanctuary. Many of them are horses from the Jarita Mesa Wild Horse Territory. They were very pretty and a lot of fun to be around. Here are some of the photos I took of these horses:

After spending time with these horses, we headed out into the sanctuary to see where Stiles will soon be exploring. At 5000 acres the area is quite large. Here is a photo I took showing one of the big open areas there:

While looking through this area, I caught a glimpse of a horse. They immediately knew who it was and we soon found the rest of the harem the mare belongs to. This harem is led by the black stallion Malpais, who came from the Jicarilla Wild Horse Territory. They apparently tend to stay out here unlike the many horses hanging out closer to the supplemental feeding area.

After a few minutes, the sorrel mare we’d originally spotted came back to them.

This harem had a foal this year. This little buckskin’s name is Fantasma, and he is a pretty good looking little colt!

We also were able to see many of the elk that are on the sanctuary right now. This was pretty fun too.

I’d highly recommend that you go to the site of the Monero Mustangs to learn more about the organization. I think that this is a program that is well worth supporting. I think that this is an especially good time of year to provide the sanctuary with support as the hay used for supplemental feed can’t be cheap for them. I had a great time out there, and I can’t wait to come back during the other seasons to spend more time there.

Published in: on December 29, 2009 at 6:30 pm  Comments (16)  

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  1. Thanks so much for telling and showing us how Stiles is doing. He is such a beautiful horse. How and why did he get to go to Monero,instead of going with the older Pryor horses that were adopted and stayed on a ranch by the Pryor Mt.(I don’t think this is bad, just curious) This seems like a wonderful place for wild horses. Thank you so much for your wonderful updates on the horses. It’s wonderful to see them and feel like we are getting to know them better. Happy New Year. Let’s hope this coming year is a better one for the wild horses.

    • Well, it basically comes down to a few different parties having similar ideas for ensuring the older horses found good homes. As time has gone on, I’ve also talked to other people who were planning to do this too, though they didn’t due to all of the already involved parties. I personally was attracted to Monero early on due to its size, security, and management planning. I hope that this is a good new year for the wild horses too, and I really think it will be a great one. Though a lot of not-so-pleasant things are going on with wild horses now, and there’s a lot of negativity swirling around wild horse issues, I have also heard about other things that are very positive signs of change.

      • Matt, I hope you are right about the coming year. I am hoping that the new year is good to our wild horses and sees them back on the range wild and free.
        Happy New Year, and thanks for the updates on the horses.
        Have you heard anything about Meeteetse, she was the only older horse that was not accounted for by either you or TCF, i was just wondering how she was doing,
        take care,

      • Jan,
        I’ve not heard about Meeteetse since a little while after the adoption, but she was doing well at that point. I’ve also had a number of other adopters contact me and let me know how well their horses are doing. I’d like to put some posts up here in the future with information on these.

  2. Great update and pictures on Stiles and his new home at Monero Mustangs. What a great place to live out his life, if he can’t be on Pryor Mtn! I hope to visit there next year, as it’s not far away. Have a great New Year, and thank you for all you do for the Pryor Horses–it is greatly appreciated!

    • I hope you’re able to get to Monero as well. I really loved it there, and I think it will be even better in the warm months when the snow is gone, the temperature is higher, and the horses are spread out throughout the sanctuary. I’m hoping to be able to get back there again next spring.

  3. Wonderful pictures! It’s great to see that the horses are in such good shape. Everyone of them looks healthy.
    Isn’t it funny that Stiles eats snow for hydration.
    Happy New Year!

    • Yes, they were definitely showing some good body conditions there! It was really cold that day, and you could see how much snow was there. This isn’t uncommon, and this season’s weather was actually a major factor in Stiles’ delay in going down there. We have to really be thankful to Ken McNabb for his generosity in providing transportation for Stiles despite this weather.

  4. Matt, thanks for the information, and it would be good to hear how all the horses are doing in their new homes. I went back and looked at the adoption file you posted prior to the adoption. Another mare I was wondering about how she is doing and where she went i Stile’s mare Cassidy, who was removed w/him.
    Also, i see that you and TCF use different names for some of the horses. Is there a chart anywhere that relates the names of the horses so that we would know who is who?
    Thank you again for responding so quickly.

    • It does get a little tricky with the naming. Some horses have a few names from different parties. We’re continuing the ID system Dr. Sponenberg introduced in 1994 along with the naming system started a long time ago but refined in 2000 with the introduction of the alphabetical system. This is why our names all start with the same letter year to year still. Basically, there were many people who invested many hours into keeping an organized database of every single horse; and we want to make sure our data remains comparable to that original data. Possible areas of difference in names result from this. Also, there was a time when having access to the horses’ names was not easy; and so many (including us) simply assigned their own names. Still, though, I think you will find that all in all, most horses are known by a single name as the horses given different names tend to be the more popular or commonly seen horses. I am making observations on every individual, though, so I need to have consistent IDs and names for them all. As far as ID’s, you really won’t find any differences since no one really cares about them but us. I’ve had some trouble keeping up with all of the different names assigned, and so my conversion charts are only complete in regard to our names and the mid-2000’s BLM names. Some of my earlier lists I distributed actually had all the different names for each horse in the names section, but this got to be way too confusing for people and sort of defeated the purpose of the names, which is to make it easier to talk about the horses with each other.

      As far as Cassidy, I’ve not heard how she’s doing in a little while; but she seemed to be in an excellent home and they were all having a lot of fun together. It would have been great for her to stay with Stiles, but I think that they are both doing great in their now different situations.

      Sorry for my big explanation on names! It’s just something I take pretty seriously and always like to explain to people.
      Thanks for your interest and support!

      • Matt, so is there a list of names/IDs in one of the newletters or elsewhere on the site?
        Also, would you recommend taking a tour w/the Pryor Center as the best way to see the horses? and if so, do I need to make a reservation now for net summer? I don’t have a 4 wheel drive vehicle and really want to see as many horses as possible, we’ll be out your way in late June.
        Thanks for all the information!

      • At this time I don’t have any easily accessible versions of my list on our site or anything. I do often email lists out to people as requested and can answer specific questions on horses from photographs. Due to what I feel have been cases of people taking credit for content produced through the horse monitoring project, though, I have gotten to be a bit more sensitive about sharing complete lists. Making updated lists available online is something that I’ve discussed a lot with people, and I really hope we can develop a good solution with this. I’d also love to be able to do something similar with my big herd database.

        If you’re unable to come to the area with a four wheel drive vehicle, you may want to consider taking a trip up the mountain with us. You definitely can try to see a lot of the Dryhead horses without a vehicle like that. These horses haven’t really been made as famous as their mountain counterparts, but they are my favorites on the range. As far as quantities, though, most of the horses are found on the mountain. It’d be great to get to meet you next summer!

  5. do you have any photos or information on the 19 pryor horses (conquistador, floyd, grumpy grulla, & all the rest) who were adopted by the friends of TCF & who are living on land on the other side of the pryors? (i noticed that there was no news on their adoption or how they are currently doing in the latest newsletter.)
    it’s wonderful to see the photos of the horses on the website! thank you so much for posting them. i hope that we can make it out to wyoming this summer to see them & to meet all of the folks at pmwmc. thanks, too, for keeping us updated on what the wild horses are up to. i look forward to seeing more photos & updates! have a great new year.

    • I’d really like to go take a look at these horses. From what I understand, they are doing quite well. Maybe sometime in the near future I can make arrangements to go visit them and showcase that project in an upcoming post too. If you are able to, please do come up to northern Wyoming! You could see the Pryor and McCullough Peaks horses in the same trip! Thanks for your questions and support!

  6. Matt, is a 4 wheel drive vehicle necessary to see the McCulloughs Peak horses, too

    • I guess it depends on how you want to see the horses. Driving between Greybull and Cody on Highway 14-16-20, you are more than likely to see some groups of horses in the distance. I’ve personally had a lot of fun just going out there and exploring the HMA on its numerous roads to find horses. The area is also very pretty. I would probably say it’d be a good idea to have a four wheel drive vehicle there though the roads aren’t really as steep or rocky as the Pryor roads. There’s also a short tour that leaves from Cody.

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