At eleven minutes past three this morning, a healthy, bay, colt foal entered the world. i know the exact time, because Fern lay down in front of me in the paddock and gave birth.
i ended up checking her at 12.30 and this time she came trotting up to me in the night, desperate for scratching and rubs. No baby, but very heavily waxed up, and obviously uncomfortable. So back to bed for me.
3.00am, at least it was a beautiful night, was all i could think as i dragged myself out of bed yet again. walking into the paddock i could see almost everything silhouetted against the bright moonlight. There was Fern, standing in the corner of the paddock that all our mares deliver in. No foal yet. but as i approached her, talking softly, she started walking towards me. Then suddenly, as she was almost right to next to me, was a great whooshing sound. Followed by the splashing of water as it hit the ground.
Guess her waters just broke. i backed away as to give her room, ands not stress her.figuring she knew what she was doing. But secretly heart pounding. Was she really going to deliver in front of me?? the big moment was here.
Turns out that, yes, she was going to deliver right then, and there. after walking a couple of tight circles, interrupted by more sounds of water hitting the ground. Down she went on the grass. I was crouched down 20 metres away, against the fence, trying to be as still and quiet as possible. glancing at My watch 3.06am.
3.11am there was a groan from fern. then the sound of something hitting the ground, with a wet thump. The baby was here.
It was a text book birth. by 3.20am she was on her feet licking her baby clean, having already passed the placenta. at 4.25am i was back in bed, having made sure that mum and baby were happy and healthy. Little Silver Son (Sonny) as he has been named,had managed, after a few attempts to get to his feet. He was happily tucking into his second drink of milk when i left. i had gotten close enough to see that it was a bay with a white sock, but didn't know the sex. I choose to leave them at peace, rather than harass Fern by trying to handle, what looked like a very healthy and strong baby.
by nine this morning though, curiosity got the better of me. mother and i, headed back out to the paddock to see how, our newest wild horse was doing. Fern and sonny were both happy and healthy. Fern letting me get right up and scratch both her, and her lovely, little, brand new, baby boy. shes an excellent mother so attentive and calm. Even in the night she stayed carefully between her baby and the fences, ensuring even in his weak first attempts, that he didn't stumble into anything that could harm him.
The baby is a cutey, it would be fair to say, that he has a bit of growing to do, to fit his head. it being slightly on the large side. But he has big strong legs, that look ready to run the ranges on. he loves to be itched and scratched and is calm, strong, boy. What more could you ask for?
As for me, I'm exhausted from my night, of little sleep, the excitement still being to Strong to get to sleep, when i finally made it to bed. But more than anything i cant believe, little Fern, gave birth,literally at my feet. i must be doing something right for her to be comfortable enough for that. What a cool feeling I'm still buzzing, my horse from the wild had her baby in front of me. i got to be there for his first steps, and even got to cuddle him this morning.Awsome!
P.s photos are in wrong sequence. they should start at the bottom, but you get the idea.