The Challenger

I took my new 7dmarkII out for its second test run Saturday and got lucky with some action at the water hole. In spite of the wet, cold, weather we have been having, the wild horses are still frequenting the pond. It started out boring with just one lonely bachelor hanging around but soon got very interesting. This young stallion had decided he was ready to take on the big boys and he challenged each stallion who showed up escorting his mares to drink.

Some of the skirmishes were short and it didn’t seem as if the older horses were taking the challenger too seriously. One stallion was not in the mood for the young bachelor and they had several encounters that were interesting to watch.

Most of these fights take a predictable path. The herd stallion runs out to meet the threat, any sexually mature male, they usually sniff noses followed by squealing or roaring and some hoof play and or nipping. Often that’s it and the bachelor runs off; end of drama.

The challenger, I will call White Socks as he has four white socks, was not running off. He was particularly vexing for this bay stallion who was not amused at his nonsense. They mixed it up several times without anyone getting hurt and no lost mares for the Bay.

The bay displayed most of the classic herd stallion behaviors. He moved his mares off and then turned to meet White Socks. In the photo with his head down he is “snaking” the mares out of the way.

Not all the pictures are in good focus. I need to work on that. Still getting to know the camera. The 7dII by the way is able to handle all the fast action without pausing. I will have to watch that. The editing was a real chore. 😉

40 thoughts on “The Challenger

  1. You’ve been posting some really great photos lately, but I didn’t figure out how to read what you typed, like a post, or leave a comment until this one. I get the text that you’ve written in the email notification, but when I click on the links, all I see is the slide show. I found out I need to click the blog link a the top of the page to read what you’ve written.

  2. Yes, the editing is the real chore. That’s what most people who are casual photographers don’t get about why they have to pay for really good professional photos. Taking the photos can be fairly quick and easy, depending on the subject of course. But editing 1000 photos of the same subject to get the absolute best one is what consumes almost all of the photographer’s time. And that’s the part that nobody except the photographer ever sees!

    1. Agreed. I used to do event photography, barrel racing and rodeo. The editing was a monster. Just this little wild horse shoot generated 800 photos. Maybe one or two are keepers. It is big job just hitting delete. 😉

  3. Very nice series and story – didn’t take you long to adjust to the new system! Observing and photographing wild horses must be a thrilling experience, with lots of possibilities. I’ve dabbled in horse photography, but never in a situation like you describe (draft horses in the college equine program, draft horses on an Amish logging operation, the Assateague Island ponies, etc. ). Hope you continue to post on the subject through the seasons.

    1. Thanks Nick, I will. The horses are always a good go to for me. This is not the best time of the year for them. Got lucky with the fighting. It is usually a spring time activity for them.

  4. I so agree with Cindy, wow. Wow, and double wow. To be there when something like happens, fantastic. Could you tell who was the challenger? Both beautiful animals. Thanks – makes me long for the great outdoors.

    1. Thanks archeoteck! The challenger has four white stockings and the herd stallion has two stockings back legs. It is a great experience to see this type of interaction in the wild. Thanks for stopping in. 🙂

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