We talk about herd dynamics - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 22 Old 02-13-2013, 12:20 AM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Valley of the Sun
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When my sister's paint was in the herd, she was the alpha. She was pretty a flighty, herd bound mare, and very reactive. It seemed like the herd was constantly on edge when she was the alpha.
When we sold her, Willow took over. She's a pretty witchy and independent mare. The other horses get out of her way when she comes through. She'll chase the other horses off if they get to close, but doesn't go out of her way to bother them. She is also extremely protective of the herd. If the coyotes come around then she is the 1st one out there chasing them off.
I was worried about putting the yearlings in with them because of her. She actually looks out for them. The babies go to her when the other horses are bothering them.
All and all the herd is a lot calmer with her in charge.

So in lies the madness, the pursuit of the impossible in the face of the complete assurance that you will fail, and yet still you chase.
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post #22 of 22 Old 02-13-2013, 12:47 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Texas
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IMO if the lead mare is secure and calm the whole herd is.
All my horses tolerate foals and allow them to approach them without aggression . It is the lower ranking mares and geldings that bully those that are lower in the pecking order.
The lead mares of each herd are very tolerant and are not abusive to the others.
They do not allow any hesitation if any of the lower ranking horses do not move out of their way quick enough.
A toss of their heads or flattening thier ears is enough to get results. That is all the force they need.
My stallion allows all the mare almost free rein and allows all to share his pile of hay or feed tub if they apporach his pen while he is feeding. No males however are allowed near his fence without a challenge Shalom
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