It’s a Colt!

So excited to announce that Highland Lily had a stunning colt by Zhivago on July 18, 2022. Lily caught me off guard as she was not showing any of her typical signs of impending birth! However, all went well 🙂 This lively fellow was already whinnying before he was fully delivered. He is still quite vocal and calls out when we head out to feed. We named him Zagazig (Zaga for short) which is the name of a town in Lower Egypt.

Bria, the filly is quite smitten and intrigued with the new addition. She stands near the fence and wants to meet him (much to the chagrin of Lily as she is still in the protective mode) Once he is a bit older, we will put the mares and foals together. Hard to get any work done because I like to visit both foals a few times a day. It is a great way to get them used to people and being touched as they are always ready for a scratch!

The materials are here for the new three sided shelter that is to be built soon. It will be great to have the additional space for the horses. Hoping to get water and power installed for a heated waterer as well. We had some work done to the ring and removed some sand as it was too deep in areas. What a difference it made!

We started to work with the three year old fillies that we retained for breeding. Darlequin and Bizette will be attending the Canadian Hanoverian Society Inspection Tour of Eastern Canada this fall. We have been practicing leading in hand with bridles so they will be ready for their big day. I will definitely need to brush up on my braiding skills. It is certainly a bit of a thrill to be presenting these fillies that we have bred and raised ourselves so they can be inspected for the Hanoverian Studbook!

Below is a photo of Zagazig at thirteen days old 🙂

It’s a Filly!

On April 25, 2022, Florencia had her foal by Benicio. We were hoping to get a filly so we could eventually add her to the breeding program. Perhaps a bit biased, but she is lovely 🙂 She was super friendly from the start and accepts everything new without any issue. The cooler wet weather has limited her turn out time but now that temperatures are warming up, she is spending a lot more time outdoors!

Bizette is back from her winter home at Tea Hill Stable where she was a companion horse for a filly the same age. Because of the availability of an indoor arena, we were able to work with her once a week under the experienced tutelage of our coach and trainer. We will continue the light training work with her and our other three year old, Darlequin, here at home. Still working on breeding decisions with these two!

We moved Lenah and Dannsair to a larger field a couple of days ago and it was great to watch them stretch their legs. Even though they are a year apart in age, the two are the same height! Lenah is petit like her dam and Dannsair is a big fellow!

Highland Lily is starting to show a bit of foal belly now. She is due around the end of July. Looking forward to meeting her foal by Zhivago 🙂

Below is a photo of the filly Bria and her dam, Florencia.

Video of Bizette

Just got through digging out from the last snowstorm. Three out of the last four weekends have brought severe storm systems. We lost power with the first two, so this past weekend, it was a treat not to have to use the generator! We have someone to clear our lane and the area around the barn but there are places that can’t be reached and have to be dug out by hand. I am seriously thinking about purchasing a small walk behind snow blower!
I outfitted all the horses with turnouts after the last storm. The run-ins provide great shelter but if the weather is particularly nasty and lasts for a while, I like knowing the horses have the extra protection with blankets on. I put the young ones in the barn overnight which is good practice for them as it allows them to get accustomed to being in a stall. They were super. The foaling cameras come in handy to see how they got along.
Definitely had to let out the belly straps on the broodmare’s blankets! Both mares are doing well. Florencia is due in May and Lily is due in July. This time of year, I like to take a look at different stallions and figure out breeding plans for the spring. Florencia will be rebred and we are planning to breed our own homebred three year olds that we retained, Darlequin and Bizette. They are both lovely fillies and it is very exciting to include them in the broodmare herd this year ☺. Because Lily is due later in the summer, she may have the year off to reset. Having two to three foals a year is a manageable number for us so not sure if we want to have four foals running around!
We are planning to build another shelter for the new summer pasture we established. It will also serve as an extra space for hay and straw storage, plus, will offer additional space for horses in winter if we need it.
Below is a video of Bizette taken in August at the stable where she is spending her fall/winter as a companion for a young filly. Having access to the arena is great as it allows us the opportunity to do some groundwork during the winter months.

November Update

It has been a while since we have posted any goings on! Even though there was only one foal born on the farm this year, it still seemed very busy. Perhaps it was a lot of non related horse events that caused the summer and early fall to fly by!

Our colt, Dannsair, was injured the day of the Hanoverian foal inspection in September and could not be evaluated. Naturally, we were a bit disappointed with that, but the important thing is his recovery. He is a wonderful colt so we are giving him rest and taking it day by day.

On to more positive news: Donahan has been sold! He will be leaving soon for his new home in Maryland. I have really enjoyed working with this amazing horse. He has been the most sensitive of our youngsters but once he figures things out, he really shines. He wants to do the right thing and is so willing. He is going to going to a super home and I am looking forward to hearing about their progress.

Meanwhile, we have retired one of the broodmares, Donatasha. She is now the designated senior to keep the youngsters in line! One of our other mares, Safira is home now after being away on a breeding lease. She is going to be put back under saddle and it will be so nice to be riding again 🙂

We are expecting two foals this year. Highland Lily is in foal to Zhivago and Florencia is in foal to Benicio. Very excited to see these crosses in 2022.

Below is a picture of Dannsair taken in October.

July Update

Highland Lily had her foal by Dancier on June 7, 2021 just before midnight! He is a beautiful colt with four white stockings and a blaze. Looks like he will be black or dark bay. We named him Dannsair which is pronounced “Donsair”. Dannsair is the Scottish Gaelic word for dancer. He is a sweet fellow, very sociable and loves being scratched 🙂

The two yearlings, Lenah and Donahan and the two year olds, Darlequin, Darlington, and Bizette are out in their respective summer pastures. They are all brought in every couple of days for brushing, handling and applying bug spray when needed. They have all had some practice at trailer loading and we will soon take them for a short drive.

Soon we will be ultrasounding the two broodmares, Florencia and Donatasha to confirm if they are in foal. Highland Lily will be bred soon and we are hoping that there will be three foals for the next season.

We had the run in shelters cleaned out after the winter build up and at the same time, removed extra sand from our outdoor ring. What a difference that made in the footing.

With the quiet spring as a result of only having one foal, we have been able to work on some gardening, landscaping, and tackling those odd jobs around the farm.

Below is a photo of Dannsair who is only a few minutes old when it was taken.

Video of Derry

Lots of signs of spring around! Shedding out coats on the horses could be a day long endeavour if I wished. However, there is lots to clean up around the yard and garden after winter to fill the days as well.

Highland Lily has approximately a month to go before her due date. The foaling stall needs a good scrub and the camera needs to be hooked up. It will be strange to have only one foal this year. However, two of our mares that are on breeding leases are both due any day now so I am keeping tabs on them 🙂 We will probably search for a companion for Lily’s foal at weaning time so he/she has some company over the winter.

The 2020 foals, Derry, Lenah and Donahan will be turning a year in May, June and July respectively. All of them have grown but Lenah is definitely more refined and looks quite dainty next to the two boys. The colts were castrated a few weeks ago and have recovered nicely….that sure slowed down some of the horseplay that was taking place in the pasture!

Donatasha and Florencio have finally showed signs of heat so next month we will officially begin the breeding season. The stallions are tentatively picked out for each but that can be subject to change!

Below is a short video of Derry taken a few days ago. As usual, his tail is up in the air:)

March Update

The horses are beginning to shed and it is starting to feel like spring! Our broodmare Highland Lily is sporting a big belly and definitely looks in foal! She is due the middle of June but has, on previous occasions, foaled earlier so we will have the cameras up and ready to go. She is an awesome broodmare and consistently passes on her excellent temperament.

The other two mares, Florencia and Donatasha will be bred as soon as possible this spring as they are currently open. Donatasha is to be bred to the wonderful stallion Wynton. We are planning to use frozen semen for Florencia but are still figuring out which stallion to use!

The 2020 youngsters, Derry, Lenah, and Donahan have grown over the winter. Currently, they are sporting very hairy coats that are usually covered in mud with this warmer weather. Keeping them somewhat tidy is challenging in the spring but they are good sports and seem to enjoy the grooming.

Our two 2019 fillies, Darlequin (Dauphin/Hampton) and Bizette (Benetton Dream/DeNiro) are maturing nicely. They are both lovely fillies. They will be lightly handled this season and then “retire” for the winter. The tentative plan is to breed them when they are three years old.

Buchanan, (Bonheur/Hampton) our 2017 Hanoverian gelding, has a wonderful new home on the Island. We are looking forward to an occasional visit to see him from time to time 🙂

Bellezza, (Bonheur/ Beau Soleil) our 2016 Canadian Warmblood mare, will resume her training this spring. She inherited her dam’s super work ethic. She is not a tall mare so she may become my riding horse. Can’t wait to get back in the saddle soon!

Below is a photo of Lenah (Licosto/De Niro/Wanderbursch II) at the beach when she was two months old. She is another future broodmare in waiting!

Video of Darlequin

Well, that two months flew by! The foals are weaned now and everything went smoothly. The two colts, Derry and Donahan are starting to roughhouse a bit more and Lenah, the filly wants absolutely nothing to do with them! They are maturing nicely and all of them are super well behaved when we take them into the barn one by one for grooming or a trimming by the farrier.

We started our three year old, Buchanan, (Bonheur/Hampton/Dauphin) this year. He is lots of fun and so willing and easy going. We have had him out trail riding around the property and hope to continue through the winter if weather permits. Our four year old filly, Bellezza, (Bonheur/Beau Soliel/Warkenson) was at the trainers this spring and summer and is now off for the winter. She will start back up under saddle in the spring. She is a perfect size for me so she may be sticking around 🙂

We are only having one foal this year but I think it is going to be a really nice one! Our mare Highland Lily is in foal to Dancier. She has been an incredible broodmare for us. All of her foals have her easy going, sweet temperament and super movement. Below is a video of Darlequin, Lily’s 2019 foal who we are looking forward to breeding in a year’s time. She, like her dam, is pretty special 🙂

October Update

It was strange not to be able to attend the Hanoverian Foal inspection this year. I know that the breeders and spectators alike enjoy the weekend! However, the 2020 foals have had their DNA samples taken, their microchips inserted, and the papers filed out for their registration to the Hanoverian Verband.

The youngsters have grown and shed out their foal coats. Looks like Lenah will be a bay, Derry will be a liver chestnut, and Donahan will be a dark bay. It will be a few more months before weaning begins, so right now, the foals are settled into a routine of grazing and naps in the pasture, playing together and sneaking some food from their mothers at mealtimes. Also, they get visits and scratches from us as well 🙂

We decided to not to rebreed Florencia this year in order to “reset” her. Unfortunately, Donatasha did not get in foal this year so we will retry in the spring. However, Highland Lily (Hampton/Dauphin/Wonderland) is in foal to Dancier (DeNiro/Lancier/Espri). This was Lily’s first attempt using frozen semen. A big Thank You to Dr. Mike Slana for all his work and visits every six hours to make this happen. Highland Lily has been an amazing broodmare for us. She consistently passes on her lovely movement and good nature to her foals. We are very excited to see this cross!

Below is a recent picture of Derry (Dauphin/Hampton/Dauphin) at the beach.

Video of Lenah and Donahan

The summer has been very busy and very warm!  We try to get the handling of the horses completed first thing in the morning to avoid the extreme heat.  You can see the changes in their behaviour when the temperature is cooler…lots more playing in the field as opposed to standing around swishing flies.  Everyone gets lots of practice with applying fly spray this time of year!

Florencia had her foal on July 12.  Donahan (Dauphin/Florencio) is a beautiful dark bay colt with lovely markings.  He still sticks to his mother’s side a lot so trying to take video of him has proven challenging.  However, I have noticed that all the very shy foals start to get braver over time and curiosity will draw them closer for a visit. A good scratch on their back seems to win them over every time!

The other foals have grown.  Looks like Derry (Dauphin/Hampton) is going to be a liver chestnut.  He has such a presence and is so personable.   We are very pleased with Lenah (Licosto/DeNiro).  She was a tiny  filly at birth but has filled out and looks amazing.  We have decided to keep her for a future broodmare.

We had some repairs done to our electric fence this year and it has allowed for more pasture rotation. It is great to be able to give some of the fields a rest especially during this particularly dry season. As I write this, Andrew is weed whipping along the fence line.  He just came in to tell me that he cut the bottom strand of our brand new fence 😦    I was hoping not to have to do any repairs quite this soon!

Will update the breeding plans for 2021 in the next post:)

Below is a video of Lenah (light bay) and Donahan (dark bay) with their dams Donatasha and Florencia.

 

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