Horses and Horsemanship
Before buying this property, we had done a small amount of recreational riding many years ago but we had never
owned a horse. When we purchased the property that is now Long Grass Nature refuge it came with three old untamed horses who we named
Wilbur, Red and Madam.
Madam is an old grey mare of indeterminate breeding. She had escaped just before we took over and gotten herself
pregnant to a neighbours stallion. Subsequently, on the 18th September 2004, she gave birth to a fine young colt who we named Monty.
as an aside, he was named after the famous WWII commander Field Marshal Montgomery, not as many people assume, after Monty Roberts
the horse whisperer who at that stage we had never heard of, being newcomers to the horse world.
Over the last few years we have acquired several other horses, mostly retirees, and sadly lost one of the original three, Wilbur after
she broke a leg escaping from wild dogs.
We now have eleven horses!
- Red is one of the original three horses. He has never been handled but is a gentle horse with a very kind nature.
- Madam is the second
surviving horse of the original three. She is Monty's mother. She has never been handled and it has taken me five years to be able
to stroke her on the face. She used to be a bit unpredictable but has settled down a lot since Monty has grown up.
- Monty was born
here at Long Grass and has had a charmed life. He has a wonderful nature and is a good strong horse. We have recently found out that
his father was a pure bred Arabian stallion Millavale Zahmul (registration number S7691).
- Emmy is an Arabian gelding who came to us
during the drought. He was going to be sent to the "doggers" before we took him. He is a very intelligent, very willing and gentle
horse. He has been to a 4 day clinic and an 11 day supercamp with Ken Faulkner. He is a pleasure to ride.
- Jack is now retired. He
came to us during the drought along with Emmy. He is an extremely gentle and friendly horse.
- Willow is the baby of the herd. She is
a registered Anglo-Arab mare born on 20 Oct 2006. We bought her in march 2009 at which time she was almost completely unhandled.
is another of the retirees. He is a large Appaloosa aged about 14 years but has a badly calcified knee joint which means that despite
his kind nature he cannot be ridden.
- Belle, also retired, is a registered warmblood mare.
- Micky is a thoroughbred gelding. An ex racehorse
who, as with many animals that come from the race track, is a wind-sucker. He was originally bottom of the herd, a retiring horse
who could not put on weight. Since attending one of Kens clinics, and now wearing a "Miracle Collar" he is in wonderful condition
and has risen to be the new "king" of the herd.
- Gypsy, also rescued from the doggers is a 5 year old thoroughbred mare with a beautiful
nature and a fantastic pedigree but with a problem in her hips
- Wilbur was the third of the original three. She was a very timid mare
who could not be approached even after years of trying. Sadly she had to be shot after breaking a leg after being chased by wild dogs.
- Rocky, a retired standard bred, ex trotter, of considerable age, is another of the retirees. He took over as "king" of the herd for
a number of years but grew too old and handed the crown over to Micky. He died of old age in Sept 2009 aged 31.
- Rebel, another
chestnut thoroughbred gelding. An ex race horse who was retrained for dressage and was given to us by the local vet nurse Andrea.
A lovely, gentle soul, just starting his natural horsemanship journey.
Australian Natural Horsemanship
Since 2007 we have been training our horses under the guidance of Ken Faulkner at the Australian Natural
Horsemanship Study Centre near Esk in south-east Queensland.
Peter has attended a number of Kens 4 day clinics as well as two of his
11 day "Supercamps". The most recent of these was the 2009 Supercamp that finished on 25th April.
Peter and Monty had a fantastic time
at the camp.
At the start of the camp Peter had never ridden Monty, who had just been started by Ken at the end of february 2009. By
the end of the camp they were very comfortable together and had formed a very close bond.
I can thoroughly recommend these supercamps
to anyone who wants to improve their horsemanship. The photos from Supercamp 2009 are available here.
Parelli Natural Horsemanship
In 2011 Peter joined the Parelli Natural Horsemanship program and has taken Emmy to two 4 day clinics
with 4 star instructor David Grace.