Posts Tagged ‘moonlight’

(Yet) more Moonlight pics!!

Last year, I sat down on a rather chilly hillside in the sun (resulting in a warm body but alarmingly cold butt) to enjoy the sunshine and watch Moonlight and Mum’s mares as they enjoyed the warmth on their backs.

Still shunned by the herd, Moonlight decided that human company was much more preferable, which is why I am now able to amuse/bore you with these photos:

As you can see, I bought her because of her obvious intelligence and decorum

As you can see, I bought her because of her obvious intelligence and decorum

Whatcha doing?

Whatcha doing?

WHATCHA DOOOIIING?

WHATCHA DOOOIIING?

Ooph

Ooph

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More on Moonlight

When we moved down to south Wales, we were able to bring the pigs and the chickens, not to mention the cats and dogs. Moonlight, sadly, has been forced to stay put at mum’s as the field really isn’t suitable for a mare and foal.

Jo and Moonlight - 6 February 2008

Jo and Moonlight - 6 February 2008

It occurred to me as I was writing yesterday’s post about Moonlight that in reality, even though she is my pony, I have spent very little time with the mare. I got her in February and other than spending some time with her each day, we thought it would be best to let her settle in and find her place with Mum’s herd of Section A mares without too much interference from us. Things like feeding her but not them would lead to severe jealousy and some major arse-kicking and she couldn’t come down to the house because the stallion, Ted, was stabled and the last thing he needed was a mare to distract him.

Thanks to that, it was until the end of March, when Ted rejoined his harem, that I was able to bring Moonlight down to the house. Typically, I had just started bringing her in each day to handle her and teach her about being groomed and having a rug on, when the builders, contracted to repair and do up the house, decided that now was the time to start The Work. (Ha, only eight months late then!)

Minor distractions such as the dumper truck parked outside the stables, the roofers ripping the roof up, the builders knocking things down with sledgehammers etc brought about the swift decision that Now Is Not The Time and Moonlight’s training (and our bonding) came to an abrupt end. I tried in the field but her companions in the field were a young mare, Hope, and her surprise foal who was born in mid-autumn. I say “surprise” because Hope wasn’t even two when Ted had his wicked way with her so she foaled as a two year old: the equine equivalent of a very young teenage pregnancy. Still, she was a fantastic mum and we chose her to keep Moonlight company so that we could wait until late spring before putting her in foal again. Bless!

Anyway, to get back to the point, Hope is very timid and having been at the bottom of the food chain her whole life, Moonlight suddenly discovered what life at the top was like and her dam’s personality (that of a total thug) began to shine through. So, handling her in the field wasn’t such a good idea because it simply reinforced her newly conceived idea about being Special.

But… by the time the builders finished and we got the yard back, it was time for Madam to meet her new boyfriend, Monty the 3/4 Polish Arab at a friend’s farm nearby. There, she was turned out with Himself and about thirty other mares (who never once let her forget she was back at the bottom) so although I visited her quite often, again it wasn’t the right time or environment in which to handle her.

And then, by the time she came home, we’d moved out …

So although she is technically my mare, it doesn’t really feel like it at the moment.

One day, one day, we’ll find a way to own our own smallholding with enough room for Moonlight (and a companion!) as well as the pigs and chickens. Until then, Mum adores her so she’s in good hands.

Horsing around

One year ago today, I collected my new Section C mare, Moonlight. She is now three and very much in foal to a 3/4 Polish Arab, nicknamed Monty.

This is what she looked like last year – a skinny teddy bear who, as a two year old, had not wintered particularly well:

As always, the herd was not at all impressed with the introduction of a newcomer and chased her round the field for ages

As always, the herd was not at all impressed with the introduction of a newcomer and chased her round the field for ages

Moonlight eventually palled up with Cressida, another outsider. Being horses, once the introductions were over, they settled down to graze

Moonlight eventually palled up with Cressida, another outsider. Being horses, once the introductions were over, they settled down to graze

I bought her because, as far as I can tell, there is a distinct lack of decent 14.2hh Pony Club ponies – the type you can muck on with your friends, doing all sorts of silly things, but also be a strong competitor in any type of competition, from one day events to the show ring. These days, they all look far too valuable (ie wimpy) to spend the day riding up the river, as I used to do on Beauty.

So … I wanted to see what would happen if you crossed a native pony with “blood”. Moonlight is a bit “showy” for her breed, but that’s perfect for what I want to do.

Still, all that’s in the future.

For now, she’s thankfully on her way to completely destroying her pink New Zealand rug and when it dies a death, it will be replaced with a plain blue one. Phew!

A picture in pink!

On Sunday, I went up to Mum’s and was disappointed by the lack of time and the driving rain as I’d hoped to get some photos of her Welsh Mountain ponies in their fuzzy winter coats, not to mention my Welsh Section C broodmare, Moonlight, as she was a real teddy bear last year and as she approaches her 3rd birthday in May, she’s growing fast and I’m missing the lot. Not to mention the fact that she is (I hope!) in foal. I’m trying to avoid thinking about the fact that the most I’ll have to do with him/her is providing the name and signing the paperwork.

Anyway … that’s a blog post for another day (like I said, there’s denial going on here!). Instead, I’ll amuse you with a photo of Moonlight’s coat this winter:

Moonlight - 11 January 2009

Moonlight - 11 January 2009

Mum said she’d got her a New Zealand rug. I didn’t realise she’s been so mean!! Still, she’s lovely and warm (I put my hand under the rug – nice and toasty) and she has no sense of fashion anyway. But even so…!

Moving on from the ponies, the weaners are looking great. I tried to get some photos but they weren’t in the mood to stay still so it made things a bit difficult! Harold recognised me immediately and positioned himself for simultaneous back scratches and belly rubs – or maybe he didn’t recognise me and simply guessed I was a sucker for piggie scritches… The rest certainly didn’t rush up and greet me in their usual manner, suggesting that I’ve passed on from their memories. Actually, they knew that they should recognise me as they hung around, looking as though they were racking their brains for a clue but the sweet relationship I had with them is long gone 😦 Still, that’s the way it works and it’s exactly what I expected.

Fergie is looking wonderful and I’m so glad I sent her up to Mum’s instead of keeping her down here, even though Mum’s been dealing with temperatures as low as minus ten. They’ve got a 5 acre field to themselves with plenty of shelter under the gorse bushes if they want it, not to mention the large shed where they sleep as well as having enough room to play out of the rain but not in their bedding. Mum also feeds them in the shed so they get to eat away from the elements.

As a result, Fergie has put on loads of weight and has grown upwards as well. Unfortunately, Mum has discovered that little ole Fergie is as deaf as a post! She’s tried several tests, having first become suspicious when Fergie was in front of the quad bike (which is kept in the same shed as the weaners) and didn’t even flinch when mum revved the engine to get her to shift. Since then, she’s realised that Fergie operates by using sight, smell and touch and simply can’t hear. I never noticed because they were always in close proximity to me so she could always see what was going on.

Poor Fergie!

Fergie - 11 January 2009

Fergie - 11 January 2009

Once I’d said my goodbyes a couple of hours later than I intended, I dropped Wurly off at her new home and once she was settled in, I made my way back to the farm, getting alarmed at how late it was. The sun (not that I could see it beyond the rain) had long since set by the time I arrived and I was forced to do the pigs and chickens by torchlight. My biggest worry was that the pigs, being used to getting their tea in the afternoon, would object to the two hour delay and would break out to find their grub themselves but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it was business as usual and they didn’t even object to the torch!

Brini by torchlight - 11 January 2009

Brini by torchlight - 11 January 2009

It was a good day and I must go up again sometime soon so I can spend some real time with Moonlight and the weaners – and Mum!