A prior post titled “Reprise Of Family Ties” conjectured the forthcoming reunion of two mother-daughter pairs with existing family residents. Hence the observation of family recognition and herd dynamics was once again anticipated. Previously we reported the unforeseen outcome of reuniting Coal and half-brother Flint. Later was the reuniting of Jewka, the “New Colt In Town”, with Rain (Cream Puff) where the family recognition was remarkable. So now, borrowing a well know phrase, you will know the rest of the story.
Expectations were soaring over four mares now ready to be joined with the Sand Wash Basin herd. The four ladies were greeted by a pair of exceptionally friendly but unrelated young mares, aka, the Welcome Wagon. However, the response was not so welcoming as anxiety and uncertainty puzzled onlookers. The six mares enjoyed a brief gallop around the pasture and the uninspiring reunion concluded with the newly introduced mares maintaining separation in a quiet corner.
Several weeks transpired with surprisingly little interaction between the related family members. The integration for some reason was suspiciously slow and no precise family reunion was witnessed. Eventually the four mares established harmony amidst the herd. Meanwhile, a post-quarantine five-year-old Pinto gelding, Rocky, was now prepared to join the herd. Dissimilarly, Rocky immediately established friendships with Quincy and the always faithful Semper, who exhibited a distinctive effort to coax Rocky through the gates into the pasture.
For both of these events the individual personalities once again significantly affected the behavioral dynamics. Did the cluster of four mares pose a greater caution compared with a lone equine? Was gender relevant to the swiftness of integration? The behaviors throughout these transitions were a complete family ties surprise even though the outcome resolved in harmony as expected.
To this point, the story coalesces into a magnificent ensemble as a finale. As pictured (17) harmonious companions socialize like an equine concert performing a unified symphony. There appears to be no single head of the herd, no coalition of brothers, no specific lead mares and no pecking order of rank and file. Instead, there is a diverse arrangement of personalities coexisting melodically with movements of chorus and operatic harmony. It’s an intensely remarkable experience to touch and intermingle with these Mustangs.