A Wild Reunion
On June 8, 2019 a foal was observed separated from his family band who were identified by photographers/fertility control darters who document the bands in the Lockwood Landfill area. They called the situation in and stayed with eyes on him until responders could arrive. He was trying to hook up with other bands but was getting roughed up by other horses and his family band had been seen heading a mile away. Separations can occur when skirmishes between stallion or other things happen on the range.
Two TLAR responders arrived and kept the foal, about 3 weeks old, away from the incorrect band where he was getting treated aggressively while waiting for the rest of the responders to arrive from around the area.
While they were waiting and darkness was setting in the foal decided to try to leave where they had been observing him, and rather than lose him to the darkness for the night they tackled him and carefully held him down in a spot that wasn't littered with rocks. Once the rest of the team arrived they needed to get him out of extremely rocky terrain and either back to his band or into holding for the night in hopes of finding his band the next morning for a reunion.
Despite a long day away from his mom, the little guy was healthy and strong and was not thrilled with all this human restraint. With a makeshift blindfold, makeshift halter, and a sling made out of a jacket, they got him up to the vehicles through a path other team members had cleared and then loaded into the backseat of a Jeep (not an easy task!) with two team members riding in the backseat to keep him calm.
As they slowly made their way down the Jeep trails toward the road a band of horses crossed the rescue caravan’s path that strongly resembled the description the photographer had given of the foal’s family band. Thanks to the WHIMS database and calls and texts with the photographer that knew the band well they were able to make a positive ID on the foal’s mom! This was all done in the dark with nothing but vehicle headlights and flashlights.
After letting the foal and a few band members see and hear each other, and after seeing his mom’s immediate reaction to hearing her lost baby’s cries, they were able to reunite the foal with his band. This sweet little colt’s name is Flynn and he nursed from his mom Fidget for a good ten minutes upon their reunion. Local volunteers observed Flynn with his band over the next couple of days to make sure all was well.
This entire rescue/reunite between little lost Flynn and his mama Fidget is a wonderful example of how teamwork can make the biggest difference imaginable. Everyone from the documentation and fertility control volunteers to the TLAR responders made this amazing reunion possible.