Thursday, June 30, 2011

Chi-Aano Alder Hill Farm Sanctuary Mustang Challenge Painting #142

Sanctuary Mustang Alder Hill Farm
6 by 9 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

Chi-Aano grazing Happily at
Alder Hill Farm Rescue where she
in permanent sanctuary.
Chi-Aano is a 6 by 9 inch special painting that is  available for sale as a fund raising painting to help raise money for the sanctuary Mustangs at Alder Hill Farm. You can purchase this painting or commission your own by going to: 

Chi-Aano and her stablemate, Brio, were surrencered to th rescue from a small farm in Mayand. To see more photos of the horses and read their story go to the Alder Hill Farm Rescue page on Facebook:

Shy Happy Adoption BLM Burro from Alder Hill Farm Challenge Painting #141

Rescued BLM Burro
9 by 6 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

Shy was just delivered to her new home this past week from Alder Hill Farm.  Its easy to forget when looking at all these beautiful wild mustang horses that there are also wild burros and wild mules that are often rounded up and in need of new homes. Alder Hill Farm Rescue placed 2 of  5 burro's this week and is also offering a staddle started mule for adoption now.  A second BLM wild donkey will be offered for adoption once her evaluation and training are complete.

This painting of Shy is offered as part of the Branson Mustang Series and for the same price as the special. You can commission a 9 by 6 inch simple watercolor of your horse or pet from now through Saturday Midnight

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"Holding Hands" Dessert First Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover Challenge Painting #140

"Holding Hands"
 Madeleine LeClerc and Dessert First
Tuesday June 28th Challeng Painting

"Holding Hands"
Dessert First (Desi( and Madeleine LeClerc
7 by 10 inch watercolor
by Linda L Martin

 Madeleine LeClerc and Dessert First (Desi) are training for the Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover in Fort Worth Texas this September 15th through 17th.  Having a wild horse trust you enough to pick up its back feet is  an amazing milestone in horse care. Being able to clean the hoofs and make the horse reliable and safe for hoof care in  one of many aspects of basic horse care and handling that the SEMM trainers  must accomplish in their training programs.

Handling of the back hooves is even more significant in a horse that has grown up in the wild and has never been imprinted by contact with humans. The back legs,  especially in mares are used  to kick in order to protect, show dominance and  to defend when  flight options are exhausted and are the first defence if the horse feels its legs are entrapped.

Many people, usually because of  Hollywood move stereotypes believe that wild horses rear and charge  and act aggressively toward people as a general rule. However  rearing is generally used between stallions when posturing or to gain a height advantage when fighting for mares. On occasion  all horses at sometime will rear at play or in addition to bucking when they have been attacked by a predator from above. Sometimes also a horse will strike out with a front foot to show dominance and defend territory.  The fact that a horse uses its hooves for a variety of self defense and self preservation actions makes it doubly important for trainers to take extra care in teaching horses to yield their feet.

For the Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover  this year Madeleine LeClerc and Robert Carlson will are training 3 Mustangs for the September competition and adoption auction. You can follow their R&M Mustang Program on Facebook!/rmmustangprogram

Special Thank you to Amy Spivey of Lightning Bug Creek Photography for the use of the  reference photos. You can visit her work on Facebook as well :!/LBCPhotography

Monday, June 27, 2011

Flip Sanctuary Mustang at Alder Hill Farm Challenge Painting #139

Flip Sanctuary Mustang  At Alder Hill Farm 
since  2010
Flip of Alder Hill Farm
6 by 9 inch Watercolor
By LindaLMartinArtist

Flip wasn't what you would call a happy adoption. This bay roan, approximately 15 years old may never have known the concept of belonging to anyone, much less the idea of being cherished. Well not until he reached  Alder Hill Farm and Scott Litherland, at any rate. A horse woman happened to be at a horse sale in Oklahoma when she spotted this emaciated little stallion fearful and unsure of himself. He was underweight, his right ear seemed to have been broken and hung over at an odd angle. His BLM adoption tag was still hanging around his neck. Someone had agreed to adopt him but upon getting him home they possibly thought him too much to handle. However that is only speculation. No one really knows How he ended up at that sale. And to make matters worth with the minimal of research it was discovered that Flip was untitled. That meant that who ever had agreed to adopt Flip had not completed the minimal of housing and inspection requirements for the adoption of a mustang through the BLM.  The woman brought him home.
She realized that to handle him properly and  help him to adjust to captivity would take proper training and handling by a professional who knew the special needs of Mustang Horses. So she contacted Scott. Scott brought Flip home and he has been turned out  as a permanent sanctuary horse.

Flip is a 6 by 9 inch special painting that is  available for sale as a fund raising painting to help raise money for the sanctuary Mustangs at Alder Hill Farm.
You can purchase this painting or commission your own by going to : 

Friday, June 24, 2011

Metawa Wacipi Wi on Winners Week Challenge Painting #138

 Lona Patton was the second Second Chance Mustang A Day Challenge Giveaway winner.
Metaway Wacipi Wi

This is Metawa Wacipi Wi, Lakota for Moon Dancer Mine. He is Lona Patton's♥ mustang, captured out of Adobe Town HMA in WY in March of 1996 as a 2 yr old. She adopted him less than 2 months after his capture,  He was still a stallion. Metawa wasn't gelded until after his first year with Lona. She used his need for attention  as a means to easily gentle him and begin his training.

Congratulations to Lona for winning. Thank- you for participating in the Mustang A Day Challenge Giveaway.

A Pintabian on Winners Week Challenge Painting #137

Christina Gorski one of  two Second Chance winners for the Halfway Give Away. 
Second Chance Giveaway Painting

The subject horse is a gelding owned and ridden by Christina's daughter. He is domesticated however, Christina forgot to send me his name with the photo. She emailed me that although he isn't a mustang he has about as much fire in him as many mustangs on some days! His breed is Pintabian (minimum 99% Arabian blood with a Tobiano coat pattern). Christina's daughter won him in an essay contest a couple years ago. She rides him or does groundwork with him pretty much every day; English, Western or no tack at all. She also rides him as part of the Woodhaven Wranglers, a competitive equestrian drill team. 

Ive included the horse she wanted painted as her prize in the Mustang A Day Challenge because I thought it a great opportunity to share with folks the fact that wild mustangs are not the only horses that run on the range.

On occasion these domestics are bread by wild stallions and the resulting offspring can be a bit costly and inconvenient for the rancher. In those cases horses that stray onto private land from public land can become a nuisance when the stallions  infiltrate the Ranch herds.  Domestic horses are not only on the range because they have strayed they are also sometimes there as a result of right of lease from the state or federal land management entities.

This means that a Rancher or Ranch can lease adjoining public land in the form of grazing rights. Generally grazing rights allow for a  rancher's stock to be on the public land for a contracted amount of time. Meaning domestic animals can be pastured there for a time sometimes no more than 3 to 6 months. This is especially important to the economy of ranchers when the land in question can only sustain one horse or cow per 100 to 1,000 acres per animal.

Many times it is impossible to tell wild horses from domestics unless they are branded with either a freeze or hot brand. Branding of Domestics makes it easier to tell them from wild horses and provides a way to get them home to their owners.

When the BLM rounds up specific herds they manage from time to time domestic horses that have strayed on to public land are seperated out of the wild herds. A brand inspector is present and will try to locate the origin of the  horse. If it is a local stray there is usually a list of reported  horses and the owners can come and claim their horses. If the horse has been found to be abandonded and goes unclaimed the unclaimed horses are in some cases offered to who ever will pay for them. Since these unclaimed domestic horses are  not covered under the Wild Horse Act they are not offered the same protection as mustangs.

It is very important if a person has a horse that is lost or strays into public land to report the animal to the local BLM office. If it is found that the owner abandoned it there there can be heavy fines. And in some locations cruelty charges will be filed against the owner of record. 

Wild Horse Watchers and photographers  are very helpful in reuniting lost horses with their owners.

Just this past spring  Horse Watchers spotted a domestic running loose on the Sand Wash Basin HMA, near Craig Colorago. The horse was wearing a blue halter and had a visable freeze brand. The Horse Watchers and photographers reported seeing the horse several times, giving approximate locations on the different days as it migreated with the wild herds. This way  the owners, who had reported the horse missing to the local BLM office, could retrieve  it. The Horse Watchers  also posted a photo of the animal and its location on the Sand Wash Basin Club page on Facebook.  The local media to the HMA picked up the information and ran a special story on the horse.

Private/public interest groups connected with different HMAs provide a valuable tool in helping when issues like this arise regarding domestic animals.

Congratulations to Christina for winning the Mustang A Day Challenge Second Chance drawing.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Amarillo Skye on Winners Week Challenge Painting #136

Amarillo Skye
9 by 10 inch Watercolor
by LindaLMartin Artist
Amy Bond and Her horse Amarillo Skye:
Painting for Wednesday June 22, 2011
Amy Bond was the winner of our Halfway Giveaway, in celebration of reaching the half way point on the Mustang A Day Challenge.

Her prize is a 6 by 9 inch watercolor  of Amarillo Skye. Skye is Amy's rescue half mustang. Amy got Skye when he  was 15 months old. As she share's on her facebook page in spite of being in need of worming and very thin, Skye showed himself to be very intelligent and a quick learner when Amy Started to work with him.  Amy said that he learned to lead, cross tie, pick up his feet and stand quietly for fly spray in just 2 days.

Congratulations Amy! 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Mustang A Day Challenge Painting #135 2011 Supreme EMM Penny and Madeleine LeClerc

"Learning Patience"
Madeleine LeClerc's 2011 Supreme Extreme Makeover Horse Penny Lane.

"Learning Patience"
8 by 10 watercolor on acrylic paper
by Linda L Martin
 Teaching a highly intelligent mustang to stand tied can be an interesting experience. What I love about Madeleine LeClerc's and Robert Carlson's training methods is that they try to keep every new experience fresh and fun for the horse.  Taking that little bit of extra time to pay attention to that detail makes not only for strong bonds of trust between horse and trainer but it makes for a trust worthy horse.

Lightning Bug Creek's A.Spivey 's photo of
Madeleine and her SEMM strawberry roan mare
Penny Lane receiving scratches as she learns
 to stand tied at the  tether pole.

Robert and Madeleine will be holding a Mustang Clinic this week end . To find out information on the clinic and TIP Mustangs they have available for adoption contact them through R&M Mustang Program on Face book or through their website
Please stop in and see more of Amy Spivey's wonderful photography on her facebook page:!/LBCPhotography

Monday, June 20, 2011

Zephyr on Winners Week Challenge Painting #134

Danielle Guinn's, of Craig Colorado, Story of how She and her mustang Zephyr  Came together. Danielle is a winner!
In her own words:
This is the story of Zephyr. He is a BLM registered mustang. While now he has a sleek Bay coat, is nice and well rounded, smart and appreciated, it wasn't always this way.
 I first met Zephyr when I was in the sixth Grade. A friend of mine's step father owned him. He was in a field, maybe 2 acres of parched grass. He was actually at a good weight... Granted it was in the middle of winter. He had two pasture mates. I was in awe of his talent.

5 by 7 inch Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

He had not been touched in a few years, and he made it clear that he would rather keep it that way. His owner was not kind to him, and expected him to behave, but instead he reacted on instinct. This earned him several beatings and several bad habits.
By the time I had been in a financial spot to get a horse, I was on my own. I called the guy up and asked about Gambler, a little appendix quarter horse he had on the same property as Zephyr. He told me that Gambler would never be sold again, as he was for his daughter to learn on. He told me he had another horse he would be willing to part with. So arrangements were made to meet this horse up close and personal.
I drove up to the familiar house and he told me I could have him for free, because if he couldn't get rid of him, he would sell him for meat. He was at wit's end. He said the horse was too much for him as he was getting too old to risk broken bones. I saw a wild horse, untouched for years, possibly lame from ten to fifteen years of hoof neglect... His mane was matted, and he had mud everywhere.
Any other sane person would have turned around and drove away. I walked out into the bare paddock, and as to be expected, he ran, head held high and proud. I wanted a challenge/project horse, as the last one didn't work out all too well. I spent about an hour out in that paddock, bucket of grain in hand. He was shy, but eventually (curious about the feed, no doubt!) he wandered close enough for me to get a good look at him. I looked into his eyes as he cautiously got closer. He wanted a bond, he wanted to trust. His eyes were so kind and gentle... I walked out of the pasture, him watching me the whole time.
I told his owner "Get that horse a brand inspection. You just sold him." I came back, two weeks later with a two horse trailer hooked up to my little SUV. He had Zephyr caught, with a lead rope on him, and he backed the trailer up to the fence. He then told me he had tried to take a hack saw to his hoof, to try to help him break off the excess. I fumed quietly, for I knew he would NEVER have to deal with that EVER again.
This was the first time he had ever been loaded into a step up trailer, and he wanted no part of it. Eventually, he loaded up, and we were on our way. We hauled him 90 miles that day, and soon his new life began.
I spent the first week I had him sitting outside of his stall, just listening to him breathe, and move. He soon learned my scent and recognized me as someone he could trust, at least half heartedly. I took him on daily walks and cared for him, and a few weeks in, time for training. I lounged him in the round pen for weeks trying to get him to accept me as his "boss"... One day, I was lounging him, and he stopped when cued, as usual. He turned toward me, snorted and walked up, and placed his big, soft nose into my outstretched hand. This was a huge breakthrough.
With the help of a few friends, we soon had him riding, the first time ever for him... Bareback. He felt a connection with people for the first time. He loved every single one of us, and he made a huge impact on everyone he's ever met. He's now my trusted partner, and I ride him bareback most of the time. I love to spend time brushing and braiding his mane. We're now working on letting Boss handle his tail. His hooves still need a lot of work, but he's getting there. I love him, he's the best horse and the best friend I've ever had."   
Danielle told us that the Brand Inspector confirmed that Zephyr was from Wyoming, although not certain which  HMA.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Father's Day Week on Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #133

Corona Band Stallion at Sand Wash Basin HMA with his 2011 offspring Can Wakan and Indiana Jones.
"Adoring Father"
Corona, Can Wakan, Indiana Jones
5 by 7 Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist
Prints available at
Reference photography for this painting Courtesy Nancy Roberts, Crystal Walker, and  John Wagner. A special Thanks to them for their contribution to this painting. Click on their names to see more of their work

You can follow the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses on Facebook at this link:

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Father's Day Week on Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #132

Daddy's Little Girl: Prince and Madeleine
Daddy's Little Girl
Prince and Madeleine
5 by 7 watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin

Band Stallion Prince with little Madeleine at the waterhole on
the Sand Wash Basin HMA in 2010.
A Special Thanks to John Wagner for use of the photography. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Father's Day Week on Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #131

"The Father Son Talk"
Brave and Frisky
5 by7 inch Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

Bear and Frisky
Reference Photo by Sally Wright. Used by permission
All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mustang A Day Challenge Painting #130 2011 Supreme EMM Miles Fidelis and Robert Carlson

Challenge Painting #130 2011 Supreme EMM Miles Fidelis and Robert Carlson

"Serious Business"
Robert Carlson and Miles Fidelis
on Day 1 of  training for the  2011 Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover
8 by 10 watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin

Miles Fidelis Photo by A. Spivey of
Lightening Creek Photograhpy.
Used by permission

Robert Carlson working in the
 round pen on arrival day.
Photo by A.Spivey
Used by permission

Father's Day Week on Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #129

Celebrating the Fathers of  the Sand Wash Basin HMA
Band Stallion Eagle and his 2010 son Falcon. Painting for Monday June 13th 2011

"Quality Time"
Eagle and his 2010 colt Falcon
5 by 7 inches Watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin

Eagle and Falcon on the High Desert Range of Sand Wash Basin HMA
Photo taken by John Wagner on a 2010 visit to  the Horse Management Area.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Marty of Sand Wash Basin HMA, 2011 Foal Challenge Painting #128

Marty 2011  Foal Sand Wash Basin HMA
"Shadow Boxing"
Marty, 2011 Colt of Sand Wash Basin HMA
4 by 6 inch Watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin
Marty is Shadow Boxing like many young colts do in preperation when they will grow up and one day become band stallions. 
This little chestnut pinto colt was born to Bonita. Bonita is a gray pinto mare. She is a harem mare in Cherokee’s Band. Cherokee is a very nice chestnut or sorrel pinto band stallion.
You can follow the horses of the Sand Wash Basin HMA and even become a part of the club  by going to the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Club page on Facebook:

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lozania of Sand Wash Basin HMA, 2011 Foal Challenge Painting #127

Luziana of Sand Wash Basin HMA
Trying out her new legs.

4 by 6 inches Watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin
Luziana is the 2011 foal of the beautiful gray mare Pablina. Last year Pablina was a member of Lightning's band. This year according to the horse spotters and photographers, the band stallion Rounder has the mare and is accumulating a large number of mares and younger horses. And so things change and life goes on in the Sand Wash Basin HMA

You can follow the horses of the Sand Wash Basin HMA and even become a part of the club  by going to the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Club page on Facebook:

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Snow of Sand Wash Basin, A Tribute Painting HMA Challenge Painting #126

"With Angels Wings" Snow of Sand Wash Basin HMA
"With Angels Wings"
Snow of Sand Wash Basin HMA
6 by 4.25 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

Little snow was the only foal born to Picasso's Band this year. Monet was Barren again, possibly because of her age.Olga, Picasso's other mare in the PZP study, was stolen sometime in the spring by Vegas.

Snow was born solid white with a few small markings of black around his mouth. His skin was pink and his eyes the bluest of blues for a horse. For several days he ran with the herd and nursed, however something wasn't right and as happens sometimes, a possibly congenital defect caused him to die at a few days old.

The Sand Wash Basin can be very hard and cruel in the variation of the elements only the very strongest and the most vigorous can adapt, survived and thrive under these harshest of conditions. This painting  is a tribute to those who lived for but a brief moment and contributed to the beauty of the experience to those who appreciate them  for but a small exceptional period of time.

To read more about the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses follow the blog at

To become involved in the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Club "LIKE" the page on facebook:

"Diamonds in the Rough" 2011 Ft. Worth Supreme EXtreme Mustang Makeover Challenge Painting #125

 Diamonds in the  Rough 
Makeover Painting for June 7th, 2011
Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover Horses Miles Fidelis, Penny Lane, and Dessert First

"Diamonds in the Rough"
Desi, Miles, Penny
8 by 10 watercolor
by Artist LindaLMartin
 Madeleine LeClerc and Robert Carlson are headed to the Ft Collins Extreme Mustang Makeover this week end with Tango and Watson. Tango and Watson are headed to competition and ultimately new adopted homes.While waiting for the results of the competition this week I am offering the the introduction of The R&M Mustang Programs three new Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover horses.

Two weeks ago they picked up their three Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover Mustangs. There three are now trainging for  the September event in Fort Worth, Texas. All three are from Nevada HMAs.

Miles Fidelis

The Bad boy of the group is the jet black gelding, Miles Fidelis. From a HMA that is famous for it extremely wild horses. This is  one of the herds least desensitized to humans in the USA.  Miles was probably destined to be a band stallion and showed a lot of  Spirit and Fear. His reactions to first introductions were always violent  when first started. However Robert reports that from the beginning Miles, once he over came his fear was willing and intelligent. 

Penny Lane

The little Strawberry Roan mare is Madeleine's horse. Her unofficial name is Penny Lane or Penny for short. Penny's introduction to work was more average to what The R&M Mustang Program expects. She also is very willing and progressing nicely. She has a very sweet face. 

 Dessert First(Desi) is the name of the little dark chestnut.  Desi was one of the after the auction pool horses that was purchased after the auction. This little mare turned out to be a real surprise. She was very willing and surprisingly easy to handle from the beginning.  She is very gentle and watches everything the two trainers do when thy are handling the other horses.

Dessert First
You can follow Madeleine LeClerc and Robert Carlson's R&M Mustang Program on facebook at:
All photos and reference photos are  by A. Spivey of Lightning Bug Creek Photography on facebook at:

Dont forget  Tango and Watson are both available for auction On Sunday at the Ft Collins Event. You can see both horses perform during the event that Starts this Friday. 
Also If you need some Equine, Livestock or Ranch  photography and would like to meet Amy Spivey in person, she will be at the event also.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Barcus Band Stallion of Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #124

Barcus Band Stallion of Sand Wash Basin HMA
Challenge painting for Monday June 6, 2011
Barus of Sand Wash Basin HMA
9 by 6 inch Watercolor
Sold As Commission
By Artist Linda L Martin
So many amazing changes on the Sand Wash Basin this Spring. One of the big ones is that Barcus has come into his own as a band stallion. This beautiful black stallion with a short white sock on his right forleg and a large white snip that covers the lower half of his face and a narrow stripe and hooked star has become a lean mean fighting machine with 6 mares  several yearlings and a new foal already on the ground.
As of his family portrait he was a bit underweight  from fighting and defending his mares. He has new scars from his battles and an injury to his right ear that he didnt have before. As he covers more mares and they come into foal things will settle down. Through the grazing months of mid and late summer into the first freezes of autumn the horses will eat and the young will grow and play. There will be some skirmishes however mostly the stallion and his family will eat and the foals will go strong until they are fat and happy for the coming winter.
Life goes on this way constant change and constantly the same each season. Unless of course there is intervention by man.

There is a possible round up of the Sand Wash Basin Wild horses sometime in 2012. At that time some of the younger horses maybe removed. With good wild horse managemet  each existing band will stay intact only to be seperated  by normal activites of horses and not the intevention of man.
This painting of Barcus was a special commission for a new young Art collector’s Birthday in Kenya. She has a great love of horses although there are not many where she lives. This is her first original.  What an honor to have the subject of her first owned art work to be one of the Wild American Mustangs of the Sand Wash Basin HMA
Photography credit for the reference photo of this painting goes to horse watcher And Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Photographer and Documenter Nancy Roberts. You can follow her blog at   To find out more about how you can participate in supporting this herd you can also link in on facebook to the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Page at:
Among other things you can meet others who are passionate about the Sand Wash Basin Herd and read about their sightings. And you can also choose a favorite horse and sponsor it to help in the documentation.

Friday, June 3, 2011

The Eyes Have it: "Snowman" of Sand Wash Basin HMA Challenge Painting #123

Snowman and the importance of  Safe Range Etiquette when visiting the Wild Horse Areas

"Eye of Wild"
Snowman of Sand Wash Basin HMA
5 by 7 inch watercolor
By LindaLMartinArtist
Watching a wild herd of mustangs and documenting it is indeed an exciting activity. Of course our knowledge is limited to those who spot and photograph and come back to share with us what happens.

There are a growing number of those who are going out now and reporting back to those of us who cant visit the Sand Wash Basin HMA, located outside of Craig, Colorado. What is so exciting, is now we have several regular photographers in our loose association, Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Club, that not only spot and document but they verify sightings. Each is developing their own list to share. We are more than bird or herd watchers, we are also all very emotionally involved in the dynamics of the band families and the daily drama as it unfolds.

Battle scarred Snowman of Sand Wash Basin HMA
Photo by Horse Watcher Nancy Roberts
Used by permission
One such drama is the ongoing saga of  Cowboy and Snowman. These two bachelor stallions palled around all winter then separated as more mares came into season this spring.  Their purpose was to challenge band stallions for the right to breed and have their own harem of mares. Snowman spent a good portion of his winter and spring battling it out trying to keep and maintain a herd.  Battle Weary and  bloodied, the stallion has been of significant concern to the horse watchers and photographers in the past few months.

With good documentation we watched the photos and the accounts of Snowman’s slow recovery. And recently he seemed to be healing well and had joined up with his buddy Cowboy again. And at last spotting Cowboy, Snowman and  another bachelor stallion, Voodoo were paling around together. Horses like company and one thing we have seen documented time and again is that when not off chasing mares the stallions generally have preferences in company when on their own.

Not only is our passion for the herds of the Sand Wash Basin HMA profound as we move forward but also is our responsibility in sharing information and working together for the preservation and yes protection of the herds. It is important that  as new people join with us  who have no experience with horses that while managed by the BLM, they are indeed wild horses and have been wild for generations before the 1971 Mustang Protection Act.

Wild Mustang Horses have learned from generation to generation to think and make decisions for themselves and they are not dependent upon man for their survival when left to their own devices. And as such they have no interest nor knowledge of domestic horse etiquette when dealing with humans. Desensitizing wild horses to humans also presents other unforeseen hazards to wild horses that could also open up visitors to the range to  injury and the horses to harm.

 In order to insure their safety we must also limit our direct contact with these horses and teach others to do the same.
If you are new to watching  Wild Horses on the Range, here are some things that you can do to keep the horses and yourself safe: 

 ~Keeping our distance. (some say about the length of a city bus or 30'ft; however a wild horse can cover that distance really fast. I would say don't get any closer than 60 ft or about the length of a house and the farther the better)
~Waving off young horses that in curiosity come too close to photographers and spotters.
~Using Telephoto lenses on cameras so as not to invade the horses space.
 ~Making sure that food and litter are not left out where they could damage the environment or teach the horses that people are food sources.
~Remembering that while sometimes water sources and salt licks are good opportunities for photo ops, visitors should take care to stay far enough away not to impede horses from coming and going. Remember that a safe distance will keep you from being trampled if two stallions are posturing. A lot of fighting takes place when opposing bands and stallions come into close contact.
 ~Be careful not to get between mares and foals or stallions and their bands. Horses are highly protective of their weak and young and will come after anything they perceive as a threat.
~Always look for the band stallion first and keep an eye on him. If he seems nervous and unsettled either you are too close or another threat is near that you cannot see.
~ Learn to recognize that a settled band will be quietly grazing and some of the younger horses will even lay down and take a nap. Being a good watcher/spotter means you want the horses to feel comfortable enough to act normally.
~If you come upon a herd suddenly in your car, stop the car if they begin to run. To chase a herd  or  wild horse with a car or any vehicle is illegal  harassment  and is dangerous to the young and infirmed. If you witness anyone doing this please report them to the BLM office in Craig. Do not try to confront them but if you are able get a snapshot of their vehicle license or catch them in the act is helpful.

Horse spotting is a wonderful activity and allows us all access to the open range to see them at their wild best. We must remember our first and foremost goal is to keep the horses happy and safe in their natural environment. We want all the horse watchers to be safe as well and have a wonderful and successful trip to see The Wild Horses of the Sand Wash Basin HMA.  

You can read more about the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses at the club page on Facebook: 

or on the Sand Wash Basin Wild Horses Blog:

The Eyes Have it: "Eye Brow Cat" EMM Tennessee Winner 2010 Challenge Painting #122

Eye Brow Cat on pick-up day.
Painting for June 2, 2011 Mustang A Day Challenge Painting#122

"First Day"
Eye Brow Cat
5 by 7 inch Watercolor
by LindaLMartin Artist
In a Mustang rounded up from the range everything he sees and experiences is new and fearful.  Some mustangs react with curiosity and some with self protection such as kicking out  or  wildly dashing about and crashing into things as their natural flight instinct kicks in and they try to escape. By being able to read a mustang’s eyes you can see the stress level and the fear level. Wise trainers learn how to read the language of the horse's eye as well as their body language. Learning to read the stress level in a wild horse’s eyes can give the trainer cues of when to step back or stop so the horse can think about the new experience.

As the trainer works the horse using the dance of pressure and release, eventually the horse gains confidence in the trainer as its herd leader. That confidence brings trust and the horses eyes soften. In doing the Mustang A Day Painting Challenge I have discovered that  the ears also will be a signal to the trainer. As the horses’ eyes soften and he trusts his trainer more, the horse’s ears will point to where ever the trainer is while at rest showing the horse is focused on that trainer and ready to move where the trainer wants him.

The painting tonight is of the uncertain eye of Eyebrow Cat. The reference photograph  of Eyebrow Cat was documented by Amy Spivey on pick-up day at the holding pens. Eye Brow Cat was destined for greatness in the 2010  Tennessee Extreme Mustang Makeover through the efforts of  Trainer/Challenger Madeleine LeClerc.  Eyebrow Cat  Came in first and  the horse trained by  Madeleine’s partner Robert Carlson came in Second making it a clean sweep for the R&M Mustang Program trained horses.

A year later in May of 2011 Eye Brow Cat helps
to teach Madeleine's new Supreem Extreme
 Makeover Mustang how to lead from the saddle.
His experience also helps the strawberry roan mare
to gain conficence and stay calm in new situations.
Next Week both Madeleine and Robert will be competing with their 2011 Ft. Collins EMM horses Watson and  Tango. If you are interested in having Robert bid for you on Tango please contact Robert through The R&M Performance Horses website : or contact him through Facebook:
Both Tango and Watson  have turned into very useful horses and with continued training have a lot of potential both in a variety of completive equine disciplines or as a trail and pleasure horse companion.

Eye Brow Cat has his own page on Facebook. After his EMM Win Madeleine adopted him. He is now used for a variety of activities including helping to train new EMM and SEMM horses.
You can follow him here on Facebook:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Eyes Have it: "Domino" Sanctuary Mustang at Alder Hill Farm Rescue Challenge Painting #121

Domino, Sanctuary Mustang At Alder Hill Farm

Domino Sanctuary Mustang
5 by 7 inch Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist

Domino is a  life time sanctuary mustang at Alder Hill Farm near Stockton Missouri.
He was a band stallion who was rounded up at the age of 10. He was actually trained and ridden as a stud for two years by his original adopter.  He has only been ridden by two men one was his original adopter and the second was Alder Hill’s head Horseman Scott Litherland.

At the age of 12 it was decided to geld the black and white pinto. He was moved to Alder Hill Farm Rescue in 2010. It was there that Leslie Maxwell one of the Rescue’s founders formed a bond with the Mustang. Leslie is the first  and only woman to ride the him. Every time she rides Domino, Leslie learns from the experience.  Leslie acknowledges that he is a very challenging horse to ride.

 According to Leslie, when Domino was entered into the herd at Alder Hill, there were some problems unique to him.  Domino has to be segregated from mares and cannot be pastured in a mixed group of mares and geldings. Drawing from his experience as a band stallion Domino’s falls right into leader and protector of the herd. He gathers up the mares and fights off the geldings. 

Napoleon (L), Prince(R) with Domino in
the mini pasture at Alder Hill Farm Rescue
Photos courtesy of  Alder Hill Farm Rescue.
All Rigths Reserved.

In order to help him learn the finer points of domestic life, Domino was pastured with the mini horses, Napoleon and Prince, and a mini donkey for the winter. The stallion happily lead his band of bachelors so that the 4 of them passed the winter in relative peace and camaraderie.

It was observed that Domino enjoyed the company of the little guys and they had no problem talking back if he got too pushy.  There was also one account of Domino using some of his band stallion/ wild mustang skills to help the little fellows  over the winter, by breaking through the ice in  the  water trough.

As sometimes happens with pink skinned horses they develop skin cancer due to repeated sunburn. Domino is a bald faced pinto which makes him a prime candidate for lesions. Over the winter it was discovered that he did in fact have some small lesions around his eyes.  The treatment and prevention of this condition is to have laser surgery to remove the lesions and then to tattoo eyeliner around the pink parts of the eyes to protect them from developing more lesions.

Prince trying to get Dominio to play.
Photos courtesy of  Alder Hill Farm Rescue. All Rigths Reserved.
Domino had his laser surgery in April of 2011. Once the skin around his eyes has completely healed he will be tattooed to prevent any additional lesions. The painting tonight is called intervention. The  reference photo provided by Alder Hill Farm was taken right after Domino’s Surgery.

A portion of the proceeds of the painting’s sale will benefit Alder Hill Farm Rescue’s Sanctuary Mustangs.

If you would like to donate to Alder Hill Farm Rescue directly or Sponsor one of the Sanctuary Mustangs there please contact them through their websight 

You can also follow Alder Hill Farm on Facebook:!/pages/Alder-Hill-Farm/143615622351535
Alder Hill Farm is a 501(c ) (3) Rescue Non-Profit registered with the State of Missouri

"Overlapping" Madeleine LeClerc and Tango Plus One : Painting #120 Getting ready for FT Collins

Overlaping" Madeleine and Tango plus Her new Extreme Mustang Makeover horse are featured in  the painting for tonight.  Posting for May 31st, 2011
Madeleine and Tango
8 by 10 watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist
In 11 days Madeleine Le Clerc and Tango, and Robert Carlson and Watson will be in Ft Collins Colorado competing in the Ft Collins Mustang Make Over. Already the two trainers are in full swing for the September 2011 Supreme Extreme Mustang Makeover(SEMM). Three horses in Training for the September Event,  a number of tip horses in training. Plus the Ft Collins horses its not surprising that the training not only overlaps but it finds more advanced horses  earning their training mileage while helping the newly started horses gain in experience.

Madeleine and Tango with Madeleine's SEMM
Mustang. Learning how to lead and be led.
Standing quietly undert he rope.

Every aspect of the Mustang Heritage Foundation program is to introduce the Mustangs involved in the program to any aspect of basic training that will help them adjust to a useful domestic life. However the training does not end with the aadoptions after the event. MHF trainers also offer additonal training and coaching for the new owners that gives even more opportunity for a successful adoption and a lifetime home for the mustangs involved.

Robert Carlson and  Watson playing
follow the leader though the obsitical course.
In Today's painting Overlapping shows  Tango  gaining experience in ponying another horse. The new horse is Madeleine LeClerc's little Roan Mustang Mare she purchased to compete in the SEMM.  To follow the Mustang Training Program that Madeleine and Robert have established in Boyd, Texas and to see about available mustangs in training you can link in on their Facebook Page: R&M Mustang Program

To read more about the Mustang Heritage Foundation programs go to