While we are staying in Mesa, Arizona we were told about the Wild Horses (Equus ferus) in the Tonto National Forest. Someone we met told us that he had been going in search of them for four years and only seen them twice!
We must be blessed because we saw some each time we went looking for them and once when we weren’t.
There are over four hundred wild horses in the Tonto National Forest. As they are descendants of the horses introduced by the Spaniards they are really feral horses. But they are just gorgeous anyway.
When we visited the Deerwood Wild Horse Eco Sanctuary in Wyoming in 2017 we learnt that the beautiful condition of their coats was due to the fact that they “buddy up” and groom each other. Again we saw some of this happening with the Tonto Wild Horses.
In the large group we met in the forest we were fortunate to see a new colt foal. The foal was very distinctive to us as it had blue eyes. Apparently this meant at least one of its parent had blue eyes.
Our second encounter of a group of the wild horses was as we were taking a hiking trail along the Salt River looking for birds. We saw a group emerge from the trees on the opposite river bank and proceed to drink and walk along the river upstream then disappear back in to the trees. We were simply amazed when further up the river the group emerged from the trees and proceeded to walk out into the river.
What a great day.
Gear: Nikon D500, Nikon MB-D17, Nikon GP-1, Nikon 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6 VRIII, Nikkor TC-14 EII, Sony Digital film