Watchful Wildies Walkabout

Wild Wild Horses couldn’t drag me away. Wild Horses are more commonly referred to as Mustangs, from the Spanish word mustango, which means “ownerless beast” or “stray horse”. Our continental neighbors to the north often refer to them as Wildies “Eh”. While our mates from down under call them Brumbies.

Regardless of your preferred terminology, these magnificent feral creatures are by no means “Wild Animals”. Likewise, the Rocky Mountain Mustang Refuge is not a zoo or a sanctuary. We do not attempt to domesticate or train our resident Mustangs. Instead, we are an experiential destination of discovery, encounter and interaction.

Pictured here is a band of Mustangs who share a common aversion toward human touching and affection. This particular band of equine have mono-behavioral characteristics of herd mentality and flight responses. Yet unprovoked, simply by walking about them, there is unexplainable magical interaction through mutual observation. We are equally curious about each other. At times it can be quite playful but mostly it is a matter of maintaining patience and building trust.

Contrastingly in the adjacent pasture is a band of equine with diverse personality variations, many of whom seek human affection and often with a jealous disposition. Ironically, it is inherently more dangerous to be inches away from a group of friendly Mustangs than yards away during a walkabout among the wildies.

For the record, strictly speaking, any one of these Wild Horses could easily drag any human away. The sentiment, however, is ultimately and poetically expressed. You don’t even need to be a horse lover to experience it.