Friday, August 28, 2009

Lucky Horse shoe #112

When we bought our current farm and acreage we had to have some foresight. Old buildings in terrible condition, an old farm house, and lots and lots of junk covered this property. As we started clean up, I started finding horse shoes...since this place had folks on it since the early 1900's, I found we not only had horse shoes all around, but LOTS of horse, I started collecting and counting. The first few years here with the most productive. In the areas around the barns, produced the most horse shoes. And the funny thing was, they were all shoes that had been sucked off in the mud, lost by the wearer probably unknowingly. I found various types of shoes, a good amount of draft horse shoes, many, many mule shoes, and the rest just general horse shoes. Draft horses were used here years ago, to farm the ground, from a wheat crop to a hay crop which they brought to the barn on wooden sleds. Mules were later used by the owner here , as he was an outfitter. He took folks into the back country for hunting trips...and then of course, throw in alot of misc horses all needing shoes.

It has been several years since I had found any shoes. I was stuck on the total of 111. I saved most of them, and put them in our barn in various spots, used a few to make tack hangers with and saved the rest....but, yesterday as I headed down to feed in the evening...I heard that recognizable klink...a sound that one hears when they hit a part of a horse, I looked down and saw an edge right at ground level. I took my hands and dug around it a bit, and my work revealed horse shoe #112! I wonder how many more years until I find the next one ;-)

Monday, August 24, 2009

Welcome Marbles

We are proud to introduce to you and give a big welcome to our ranch "CVC Marvelous Story" aka..."Marbles"....Marbles is a product of Laura Kinne's program, she has been breeding quality horses for a number of years. Marbles loaded quickly at Laura's, and settle in nicely for a long ride home. She seemed content and perfectly happy on our journey and has settled in nicely here at the ranch. Marbles' pedigree traces back to *Peter J, ABC -1 (f) literally the first curly horse registered in the ABC. On the bottom of her pedigree it is a fine blend of curly lines, and TB lines. Marbles is a smooth coat and is 3/4 curly 1/4 TB. She is a lovely mover, supple, elastic, with good suspension and extension. We are quite pleased to have her in our mare herd. She will be started under saddle, and there will be a fall breeding to our stallion. Welcome to the new girl !

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A great Honor

As most of you know or suspect...I have a love of "horse photography"...presenting our horses in the most accurate and incredible light as possible. I also have a great love of competition...whether it be in my horses competing or myself competing my own photos.
Well...I have my very first "BEST OF SHOW" winning...for one of my pics ;-) I enter a few great contest each year, the CSI Equine photo contest is one of them. and......this year, I took top honors for amateur photographer, a BEST OF SHOW win! Not only did I get a really great prize, but I am stunned, honored and totally jazzed about the win. Photos are the history records of life. This photo was taken 2 years ago, when Kallie was just a baby foal, and has always been one of my very favorite photos ever! Thank you CSI for hosting this contest..and thank you to God for my talent and my herd.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Hattie's diary...happy birthday to me!

Yeah !!! Tomorrow I am two months old...a real mark in an orphaned foal's life, at least that is what they say.....;-) All my recent visitors have commented on how well I am growing, and some muttered something about being able to eat dinner off my back? I thought a flat back was a good thing? I spend my days with my 1/2 sister "C-C Heather" she knows I am really the boss, and acts accordingly. Mom takes us out for long strolls, some grass to eat, and good exercise...Heather and I like romping in the arena ALOT !! We get to play with the brother..."Dark Knight" some and sometimes Legacy our "auntie" watches over us. All in all, it is a very good life. I have cut my milk consumption down some, but Mom decided to keep giving me milk, to make sure I keep growing so nicely. Usually at 2 months, they cut your milk off, but I guess I am going to be waaaaaay spoiled and get some for another month. Mom says it is expensive..but she says I am worth all her effort and love. I guess soon there will be other weanling to greet, I have not offically met my other sisters, they stroll by my pen twice a day, once in the am for breakfast, and they again in the evening on their way back out to pasture with their is certainly good around here ;-)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The ups and downs of AI

We offer *AI* as a service here on our farm, so that mare owners across the country can get some of the genetics of our wonderful, successful competition stallion....*Shadow's Hawk Spirit...aka..."HeartBreaker......

Every year we have inquiries about the complex business of AI, and ask how they can best be successful, as it is a costly venture. We have several tried and true rules about what we want in a possible date for HeartBreaker, but the most important one of these rules, is DETERMINATION....
it takes alot of determination on the part of the mare owner, one to find a suitable equine reproductive vet ( believe you me, they are not all suitable ) to get the appropriate "prep" work done for the mare ( culture, proper weight, good health, etc ) and patience too. Not all mares will settle on the first round. Live cover stats for mare is at 70% success rate, and AI rates are a bit lower than that. Maiden mares are sometimes stressed by all the vet work that must be done, and until they are used to it, and in a better frame of mind, they may not settle.
This year we had another factor in the mix ( this is where determination comes into play ) We received word that Fed Ex had damaged the shipment, and the vet requested another shipment of semen. It was doable from here, so we went ahead. Timing should have been just right, BUT...Fed Ex was again the culprit....The Shipment was on a plane that was delayed for repairs in TN, the shipment never made it to its destination, but instead landed there a day repro work, a day late is most often a disaster, as it proved to be in this case....So, our mare owner was out yet another cycle, and had to file an insurance claim against FedEx to cover expenses.
Thankfully, on the next cycle, the mare settled and is happily into her pregnancy now.
For those considering AI, just remember, a good dose of determination can go a very long ways.