Feeding time at the Zoo!

Feeding the little Icelandic herd at Leradale is a two-man job.  Today, it was Floss’ turn to help me feed Brá, Dreki and Lilja.

I had hold of Hetja and was feeding her pieces of swede as she is a good weight.

The little foals get a bucket each, which they have quickly learned to kick over or play with or even eat the contents…..

ie, mucking about and arguing!

The most important horse is Brá who is giving her all to her son, Dreki.  In science terms, it is called a “maternal investment”.

If you are interested, this article is fascinating – Maternal investment results in better foal condition through increased play behaviour in horses

Hetja is still letting Lilja nurse, though she is not getting nearly as much benefit as Dreki who is bigger and fatter.

Lilja was bored of her bucket first – the wind had tipped it up and she lost interest.

So she came to say hello to me and ask why I was keeping her mother back.

Next up was Dreki, having finished off Lilja’s food, now on the ground, too.

Lilja drifted back but Dreki stayed to chat.

Brá, meanwhile, still ate her bucket.  She has her personal body guard, ie Flossie.

 

Hetja did the washing up!

 

 

They are not looking bad for 8 month old foals.

I am still working with Dreki and Mr Headcollar.  He is a very good boy.  Lilja continues to voice her objections.

4 thoughts on “Feeding time at the Zoo!

  1. Margaret Robinson

    Hi — We’ve a similar term for parts of “motherhood for horses” here. And much like your two babies, foals here differentiate in size and how much is eaten. The females are usually less in size (not always because of feed because occasionally you get a filly who will eat normally, but grow really fast). Sometimes fillies here have run off the smaller colts and eaten their food too. You couldn’t possibly have any of your horses like that as they are all well-mannered!

    Reply
  2. Louise Stopford

    The foals do look really well. I think Dreki is going to turn out (if not already) an absolute sweetheart.

    Reply

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