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"Taffy" and Betty's first ride

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Bobbi.  Left eye removed at vets.

  Wild Horse Spirit Ltd. presents...

            "the  Palomino Band" 
    closeup palomino stallionEarly Sunday morning August 1989. Palomino band just finished drinking at Lousetown Creek and now on their daily free roaming journey

                     Free-Roaming in the Virginia Range -August 1989
© Photo by Wild Horse Spirit, Ltd.

"As It Should Be, Wild Horses (forever) Running Free"

The "Palomino Band" was a well-known and beloved Virginia Range band of wild horses photographed while free-roaming in August 1989.

On this early Sunday morning, this band has been the third wild horse band to drink from Lousetown Creek during the summer drought. Very orderly and courteously, each band waited and allowed each preceding band distance and time to drink. Then each band resumed their precious free-roaming migratory journey.

This beautiful family of wild horses was removed from the Hidden Valley community in February 1991 to protect them from harassment, abuse and slaughter-for-profit by a few unkindly and unenlightened humans. If the saga continues as is continuing on both public and private western ranges, soon the last wild horse will go with Pegasus.

Riparian Areas and Wild Horses

Below are a series of photos taken on that summer morning in August 1989.  The photos demonstrate that during droughts, wild horses know the preciousness of water.  We observed them drinking quickly and leaving without disturbing the riparian areas or the surrounding forage.  The MYTH that wild horses destroy riparian areas is false but continues to be propagated by the private vested interests of public lands livestock industry and uninformed people..  See for yourself below and you decide.

Early Sunday AM, the first wild horse band appeared to drink from Lousetown Creek. Because of the drought, water was scaress and precious. After the first band left, a second band appeared waiting patiently for the first band to move up the mountain road before proceeding to the creek to drink.
(ABOVE) That early August 1989, Sunday morning, we waited quietly on the mountain side hoping to see the Palomino band that we had observed in early spring near the developing Hidden Valley community just east of Reno NV.  While we waited, (LEFT) the first  band appeared from the left.  They drink from Lousetown Creek then moved up the mountain road.  (RIGHT) Then the second band appeared.  They, too, courteously and orderly, drank from the creek then continued on their free roaming migratory journey.
Finally, the Palomino band was the third band to appear, wait patiently, then took their turn to drink from Lousetown Creek that Sunday morning in August 1989
(ABOVE) August 1989.  We had almost given up, when suddenly, the Palomino band appeared to our right on Lousetown Road.  They, too, waited quietly for the 2nd band to drink. Once they left, they proceeded down to the creek.  They were the third wild horse band to drink from the creek that early Sunday AM. The Palomino stallion is seen far right just above the green sagebrush. The palomino filly is Yellow Fox and the sorrel paint filly is Echo.

(RIGHT) August 98- Palomino stallion, "Skip", is to the far the right.  The dapple gray mare is Whisper's mother.  The dark foal to her left side is Whisper's brother. Whisper was born the next year in 1990. By that time, Whisper's brother had turned a dapple gray like his mother.  The Palomino band, along with Whisper,  returned to Hidden Valley in 1990, the drought still on-going.  To the far left is a reddish-brown foal.  That is Taffy.  By February 1991, the Palomino band was removed for reasons given above.  It was then that we adopted Whisper, our first wild horse, to save her from slaughter because of a blinded left eye.  Whisper  was  considered "unadoptable".  But WOW what a horse she turned out to be. Taffy was our 2nd wild horse.  Both still "Spirits" at Wild Horse Spirit.    

Palomino band waits patiently while the preceeding 2nd band drinks from Lousetown Creek
In times of drought,as this photo reveals, wild horses do not destroy riparian areas, but quietly and quickly drink and move on, hardly distubing the creek and surrounding forage. This is unlike livestock that congregate around and destroy riparian areas.
(ABOVE) Now the Palomino band is at the creek, quietly and quickly drinking from the creek before continuing on their precious free-roaming migratory journey.  This was the only water source around during the drought.  As you can see, the MYTH propagated that wild horses destroy riparian areas is entirely unfounded.  In time of drought and unlike livestock, wild horses drink then leave, hardly disturbing the creek and surrounding forage.  

After drinking from Lousetown creek on this early Sunday morning in August 1989, the Palomino band's precious daily free roaming journey continues.

Taffy is the sorrel foal bringing up the rear. The dark foal is Whisper's brother
was born one year later in 1990. 
The dappled gray mare behind the palomino stallion is Whisper's mother.

Palomino stallion (left), Whisper's mother (dapple-middle) and Whisper (right)in Fall 1990  Goldie (left), Whisper (right) and Taffy (behind)in 1990
are some of these wild ones now!  
Taffy, only a few months old in the August 1989 photo at the top & in the photo on right behind Whisper,  born the next year to her dapple gray mother, are both "Spirits" at Wild Horse Spirit. Skip, the Palomino stallion is in Missouri and Goldie, a palomino filly, lives in Reno.

HISTORICAL NOTE:   The Virginia Range wild horses (Northern Nevada) are the very horses that spurred Nevada's Wild Horse Annie, Velma Johnston, Velma Johnston aka Wild Horse Annie - historical crusader for the preservation and protection of America's free roaming wild horseon a long grueling political journey, beginning in the 50's, to stop cruel atrocities inflicted upon wild horses by unenlightened humans who saw them only as an easy cash crop for slaughter (mustanging); only objects to satisfy their need for cruel excitement, pests, etc.  Annie's journey ended in the passage of the federal 1971 Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act.  Children were instrumental in helping to pass this Act.  The Virginia Range was the on-site location of the movie, "The Misfits" (1950's), starring Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe. The "Misfits" graphically documented the cruelty inflicted upon the innocent wild horses of the Virginia Range.

  Ironically, the Virginia Range wild horses were excluded from the Act, as were many other wild horses across the western states.   Mustanging continued in Storey County (NV) and surrounding counties until late 1993 when Storey County finally passed an ordinance prohibiting mustanging because of public outcry and zero tolerance for this senseless tradition.

  In December 1990 which is the shortest and coldest days of the year, a mustanger with the approval of Storey County officials and brand inspection certificates issued by the Nevada Department of Agriculture, captured 391 wild horses through a grueling helicopter chase and trucked them directly to auction for slaughter in Idaho, North Platt NB and Texas.  These 391 horses included stallions, mares, and foals.  Today, there remains only two horse slaughterhouses for human consumption in America...Beltex and Dallas Crown in Texas. Both are foreign owned and horsemeat is shipped and consumed abroad as a delicacy. Click on Texas for more information and what is being done to stop this atrocity.

   More to COME!

Wild Horse Spirit, Ltd.
25 Lewers Creek Road
Carson City, Nevada 89704
(775) 883-5488

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