Wild Stallions

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Wild Stallions

Image: Chris Gimmeson,
Nature Honorable Mention,
2008 International Photography Contest [larger view].

The photographer writes:

These are two wild stallions from the McCullough Peak's herd of wild horses, which is located just outside of Cody, Wyoming. This image was taken in September 2008 with a Canon Rebel XSI and a long telephoto lens. I expected them to fight but they went back to grazing after a minute of posturing. The peaks area is pretty desolate, with little in the way of water supply and a lack of trees. The main staple for their grazing is sagebrush.

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Feral stallions would be more accurate.

yes, but they don't know they're feral!

(besides, what is the time limit for feral-ness? horses did, after all, evolve in north america)

Too often we do not see that stallions are not the fire breathing dragons they are made out to be. Stallions that are raised in a herd environment often meet and greet other stallions who aren't challenging them for the mares.

Mmm...I think feralness is pretty much a permanent condition. Cows =/= bison, German Shepherds =/= wolves, domestic horses =/= extinct native horses. Lovely animals in the appropriate setting, just not a part of our native ecosystems.

Excellent!

By Bill S. Preston Esq. (not verified) on 03 Dec 2008 #permalink

"Maybe, but that pinto on the left sure has a lot of battle scars! "

or just scars, not battle scars. Many of the horses turned out in pastures have scars too. Boys tend to play rough, mock fighting, biting and kicking at one another. This is not to say that fighting does not occur, it does, but many times meeting is greeting, not aggression. And in a herd environment, it is more evident.