This mare, lovely though she may be, is only rarely recorded in a relaxed attitude; she is quite put-off by any human proximity. She has a ranch brand, and indeed, for years, was a useful but uncooperative working horse. She found a new home with That Herd, and has not once allowed a human hand touch her since she was released. She took to free range life readily and this is her first foal, which was dramatically stolen from her just after birth by a wise old mare longing for her own baby. (Previous posts document some of those moments). I like this image not only because it’s a pretty scene, but because it might be the only time this black mare didn’t sprint past me in a wide arc to guarantee I could not get close. Even in this image, you can see her raised tail, her head held low nervously mock-grazing, eyes and ears alert to my position, before she can’t stand it and dashes away. After numerous encounters such as these her filly has learned to be suspicious of visitors as well. This black mare, formerly known as Tehachapi, seems suited to her new life. She’s a fine example of the strength of wild instinct still residing in domestic horses.