Tuesday, December 1, 2020

A New Life For Gosto

 

Gosto (Altamiro x Bella)
Enjoying a good gallop on one of his last days on the range


On November 13 Gosto left his wilderness world at Ravenseyrie and embarked on journey taking him to a new life in the Flamborough district of Hamilton, Ontario better than 6 hours south of our wonderful Manitoulin Island.

Steph Clift of Clearview Kiger Adventures is well situated to take on Gosto, an 8 year old, untrained Sorraia stallion as she has had experience with stallions and owns a number of Kiger Mustangs both domestic and wild born and an infrastructure in place to accommodate him.

Two 2019 yearlings from Clearview Kigers

Steph likes to use liberty training to start horses and also enjoys tackless riding.


Steph Clift and Ace (Kiger Mustang from Riddle Moutain HMA)



While Gosto has not had any formal "handling", since birth we have had daily interactions with him and he is no stranger to the wonderful itches sensitive human hands can provide and has appreciated us helping him keep his mane and tail free from irritating burrs.  Of all our stallions, Gosto is the one who seems to actually enjoy interacting with humans and is full of curiosity and trust.

Steph intends to leave Gosto as a stallion and cross him with one of her Kiger mares and that is something that Kevin and I are so pleased to hear.  Steph will also likely be training Gosto as a riding mount and if she is as sensitive and patient with him as she was with him during the 5+ hours it took to have Gosto calmly walk into her trailer, I have no doubt he will be a willing partner and that both of them will be experiencing a more beautiful life by coming together than if they had never met.

Steph let me know when she and Gosto made it safely to their destination late that evening.  She left Gosto in the care of a friend because she had to be off again in the next morning to haul some more horses (Steph hauls horses coast to coast as part of her occupation) and kindly sent me a photo her friend had taken, showing how well Gosto was getting along.  Gosto had only arrived late Friday evening and this photo was taken on Sunday:

Gosto, not looking like a wilderness stallion any longer

 
To my eye, Gosto looks a little perplexed at his "change of scenery", but not the least bit unnerved by his induction into the life of a domesticated horse.  

We sure wish him well!  And we hope to receive news from Steph about Gosto from time to time.

I'll close by sharing just a few images from some of the last days that Gosto was with us.




Getting accustomed to the round pen


Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Iberian Horse Free to the Right Home


Gosto
Sorraia Mustang stallion on Manitoulin Island


Special Notice
____________
The Ravenseyrie Sorraia Mustang Preserve needs your help.  An amazing Iberian horse is free to a good home.  Sound, healthy, the most gregarious, people friendly stallion at Ravenseyrie - this horse has fantastic potential for the right person.   When I was a young girl, to be offered a horse like Gosto would have been a dream come true!  But I am no longer young, nor do I have the luxury to lavish all my attention on one special horse, and do not have a controlled setting for training.  Someone out there does, though - that someone could be YOU.  Please consider our gift of Gosto.  We will corral him for you, the rest is up to you.  Come pick him up (before the Whitetail Deer hunting season begins on Nov. 16) and embark upon a beautiful educative partnership for him and for you.  Contact Kevin Droski at eastbluff@xplornet.com or Lynne Gerard at ravenseyrie@xplornet.com 

17Oct20 UPDATE:  Congratulations to Steph Clift from Clearview Kiger Adventures in Hamilton, Ontario - with heartfelt thanks for her willingness to bring Gosto into her life.  We will post more soon!
____________


There came a day when Gosto got the "urge for going".

Nevermind that he was born and raised in the Ravenseyrie Sorraia Mustang Preserve and had been quite contented to roam the expansive 360 acre habitat with his siblings and receive the support and admiration of the two devoted humans who live there, too.  "Seasons change and so did I, You need not wonder why" -  Bachman/Cummings.  

This spring, as a mature 8 year old stallion, something within him became dissatisfied and pressured by the situation he was living in.

Gosto in the lead
  

It wasn't enough to simply avoid his brothers when testosterone aggression expressed itself among these wild boys, the way his sire, Altamiro, had learned to do.  No, Gosto wanted a realm to himself, it seems...so he taught himself how to swim out and around the eastern fence line extending into the North Channel.  A brilliant solution for an incredibly intelligent equine, but one that has made things very problematic for us humans.

To provide some perspective on the way Ravenseyrie is situated on the landscape, I have put together these aerial photos. Click on each of them to see the larger version and read their captions.

After swimming out and around the eastern fence extending into the lake, Gosto, found himself off the preserve and on Bill Riach's property, so he climbed up the bluff to the table land and loitered around Bill's yard.  Again, and again, and again, Kevin would go to the site, dismantle a section of the cedar rail fence and with a bucket of oats, escort Gosto back into the preserve.  Again and again and again, Gosto would swim over to Bill's property.  Bill leases the front range of his land to Bill Fogal who runs cattle up there from spring to fall and with the kind and generous permission of the two Bills, we were able to let Gosto live temporarily among the cattle while we put our minds to work on a solution.

Bill Fogal's handsome cattle
  

Each morning and each evening, Kevin has gone over to the cattle range to check on Gosto and bring him oats and hay cubes and remind him about how good life is on the preserve.  As expansive as the cattle range is, Gosto is frequently hanging around the fence between the preserve and Bill's land, looking to see what his former mates are up to.



Fidalgo, within the preserve, Gosto on the outside

Gosto.  What a handsome horse!


After strengthening a number of sections of fence that needed attention in other parts of the preserve and juicing up the electric fence line that extends into the lake, Kevin gave an invitation to Gosto to come back home - with us both hoping enough time had passed that Gosto had changed his mind and would stay home.  Sigh...Gosto had not changed his mind and the electric fence down on the shore did not dissuade him - he just swam further out (or under where it was higher than him.)

More time passed until Kevin and I managed to install a floating boom barrier further out into the lake and when the next opportunity to invite Gosto back home came, Kevin took it.  And Gosto spent the night at home!

Bringing our floating boom from our shore over to Bill's shore

We got the boom installed, finally!

We head back to the Ravenseyrie shore, hoping the boom does the job.

Joy was short-lived due to a day of high winds and powerful waves that managed to rip the floats off their mooring, snag them on the post that the electric fence connected to and downed the line.

High winds, high sea

The float line lost its mooring but got snagged by the fence post.

The rest of the boom got pushed up on the shore
  

While the waves were high, Gosto did not venture out to sea, but Kevin predicted once the lake went calm, Gosto would take his leave again - which he did.

What can one do when someone they love wants to leave?

  

We have to let him go.




 
Gosto, coming up to see me, while on the cattle range

Both Kevin and I are stretched to the max just carrying on with daily duties here on the preserve as well as making sure our mares down on the Twinravens range an hour's drive from Ravenseyrie are doing okay.  Our way of living, our finances and our personal physical energies are not capable of keeping a horse that is as determined to leave us as Gosto seems to be.  

Winter will soon be here and Gosto will no longer be tolerated on the cattle range - so we are obliged to find a new home for him.  But how does one find the right home for an untrained 8 year old Iberian stallion in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic?  We have cast out a line or two among a few people we know, but so far nothing has come of it and the clock is ticking...

The next step we are taking is to put it out to the general Manitoulin public:

The Ravenseyrie Sorraia Mustang Preserve needs your help.  An amazing Iberian horse is free to a good home.  Sound, healthy, the most gregarious, people friendly stallion at Ravenseyrie - this horse has fantastic potential for the right person.   When I was a young girl, to be offered a horse like Gosto would have been a dream come true!  But I am no longer young, nor do I have the luxury to lavish all my attention on one special horse, and do not have a controlled setting for training.  Someone out there does, though - that someone could be YOU.  Please consider our gift of Gosto.  We will corral him for you, the rest is up to you.  Come pick him up (before the Whitetail Deer hunting season begins on Nov. 16) and embark upon a beautiful educative partnership for him and for you.  Contact Kevin Droski at eastbluff@xplornet.com or Lynne Gerard at ravenseyrie@xplornet.com  


 

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Autumn Enchantments

A Discussion

There are things you do not know 

About the way things at Ravenseyrie have unfolded. 

Unsettling things.

Things that awaken thoughts you'd prefer not to have...

So you are best served not to dwell on such things.

Instead, walk among the other inhabitants

Breathing in the Wim Hof way

After cold immersion --

Then one can feel the enchantments

Such powerful medicine!

And smile to think one had been so paralyzed with anxiety

When really there is nothing wrong

Except a befuddled perception, now arighted

Almost effortlessly. 


Symbiotic

Family



Shaggy Parasols

For Dinner

Mares

Stallions


Apples and Hawberries

Rija

Waves

Barred Owl
Attitude

Looking up to The Zen Elm --with Gratitude