Saturday, December 1, 2012

Are You My Mother?

A couple of ravens have joined the herd.  I was cleaning stalls this morning and one of them sat on the fence cawing right beside Bombay.  Bombay gave it a little nudge with his nose and it didn't move.  A short time later he was drinking out of the water trough and the raven swooped over his head missing him by just a couple of feet.  It's wings went whoosh whoosh whoosh, and he didn't even flinch.

The ravens will walk right under the horses' legs, and the horses just accept their presence.  I've seen some birds ride my horses.  I wonder if their claws feel good, because the horses never try to get them off their backs (like they try to get me off their backs sometimes).

The bunnies will also hop under the horses' legs.  It's interesting how some animals just learn to live in harmony together and trust one another.  This bird seemed to hop from horse to horse asking, "Are you my mother?"

Please excuse the piles of manure in the background.  I had literally just dumped a wagon full of it only to turn around and find several fresh piles.  I did some calculations and figured out that each horse leaves 15 to 20 piles of manure a day.  So, in my barn I am cleaning up 45 to 60 piles in one 24 hour period.  Do you think they get enough roughage?  Just kidding.

I had wished I had my camera when Bombay poked the raven with his nose, but Gabbrielle did a repeat performance for me later on when I did have it.  When I first heard the raven making this noise, I thought it was choking on something.  Apparently, they have a wide range of sounds they can make.

Sorry about the shakiness.  I was trying to balance the camera on the railing while standing on my tip toes, and it didn't help that I started laughing silently as Gabbrielle inspected the bird.  These horses crack me up.

I  used clicker training to try to get Gabbrielle through the gate to the public land, and she was so suspicious of the gate that she flopped both ears out to the side and turned her head sideways to eyeball it.  Unfortunately, every time she made the decision to step through, Lostine had to ruin it by screaming, "Don't do it!  The gate will eat you!" and Gabbrielle would jump back.  Considering that the house was blocking Lostine's view of us, I suspect this communication was somewhat telepathic, because Lostine's timing in her frantic whinnies always coincided to the second with Gabbrielle making a move to step through.  Weird.  I think next time I'm going to wrap duct tape around Lostine's muzzle to shut her up.  LOL and JK.


Reddunappy said...

I have heard that Ravens are one of the smartest birds there are.

Funny how tame those are!

Marissa said...

That's so cute! Love the video

fernvalley01 said...

Cute video, Curious girl

Crystal said...

That video is very cute! I too have a horse that makes a ton of noise if I leave her home, Only I think she is saying take me, take me, you forgot me at home! It is rather disturbing to the other horses though.

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Oh yeah, since I mentioned manure clean-up in this post...

I had a neighbor thank me yesterday for keeping my barn and horse paddock clean. I do it for my horses, because I've discovered that they don't have to wear fly spray and fly masks this time of year if all the manure is cleaned up twice a day, but I thought it was interesting that my neighbor was keeping an eye on that. I guess having a new barn go up in the neighborhood makes some people nervous.

ellie k said...

When I was very young my dad used to tell me if I caught a raven and split it's tongue it would be Able to talk, of course I could not catch one and had no idea how to split ones tongue if I could have caught. I remember some of those wives tales and they make me smile now. I am 67 so you know this was many years ago. Keep the great posts coming, love to read them. Ellie

achieve1dream said...

I LOVE ravens!!! So cool that you have them around there. I had no idea they made that noise. So cool! And Gabrielle is just adorable investigating her new friend. I could see Chrome having a ball if he had his own pet raven lol. That is just soooo cool! Sorry I know I've said that a million times.

Oh and duct tape does have many uses..... haha just kidding!!

Since the clicker training was on the verge of working for Gabrielle I hope you can find a way to try again. Would it be at all possible to tie Lostine up somewhere around the gate so that they are within sight of each other while you work with Gabrielle? I don't know how well she ties or if there even is a place. I'm excited how close she got to going through. :D

P.S. I forgot to say Happy Thanksgiving on your Thanksgiving post! I'm glad you had a great day and that you're close enough to your kids to spend the holidays together again. That's so awesome!