An Unpleasant Condition?

This morning Jackie chopped up all the recent garden refuse too large to be composted, for burning, which Flo did this evening, or dumping at the recycling centre; I dead-headed and weeded.

For some days now we have been aware of a goldfinch incubating the contents of a nest in Wedding Day rose. We only have to walk under the supporting arch for the parent to fly off.

Jackie decided to photograph the nest as it is without the parent.

Or is it without a carer?

After lunch we took a forest drive.

Beside the ford at Brockenhurst, now bearing enough stream water for vehicles to create a splash,

a young foal, its too long legs splayed for grazing, attracted much attention from visitors and a friendly woman on a seat with a gentle dog on a leash. I wondered why the equally amenable foal appeared to have lost chunks of fur. Suddenly, coming face to face with the companionable canine, the spooked equine rushed round and round the green, eventually settling at a safe distance from the bench. Had the infant been attacked by a different dog? Was this a skin condition which needed attention?

The two adult ponies among the buttercups remained unconcerned.

At Waters Green cattle slept and ponies grazed,

foals having a penchant for ditches.

Jackie photographed me as I wandered among them,

and found her own foal in a ditch.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s pasta Bolognese or Carbonara, according to taste; Lidl Aberdeen Angus burgers; tender asparagus and green beans, with which I drank more of the Ponce de Leon and Flo drank mixed fruit cordial, while Jackie abstained.


        1. That would have been good. I sent a link to my post to the Verderers this morning. They had not known about that foal, although there had been a report of one with neither mane nor tail.

    1. Thanks very much from us both, Liz. I am going to investigate the foal’s condition today – the Agisters will deal with it if they haven’t already been alerted.

  1. Jackie’s photos are superb! So lovely!
    Her “Where’s Derrik? He’s among the sweet sleepy faces!” is a wonderful photo!
    What an interesting nest! Wonder what is afoot there?
    Such a cute little head and ears visible above the ditch. 🙂
    Your photos are delightful, too, Derrick!
    I hope that little foal is okay. It is a mystery as to the loss of hair. I hope it wasn’t painful. 🙁
    (((HUGS))) ❤️❤️

  2. This is a garden of Eden of sorts…
    In East Africa when there are no leaves high in the trees, giraffes spread their forelegs in the same way to reach the grass… Nice convergences…
    I too wondered about the missing patches of fur. Barbed wire allowed on fences in your neck of the woods?

    1. Thanks very much, Brian. We liked your comparison with giraffes. I think this is more than barbed wire. I am going to contact the New Forest Agisters today.

      1. I might have a giraffe picture somewhere. Will send if I find it.
        Agisters are the authority? Good idea. The “cuts” seem short. That’s why I thought barbed wire… The foal is young, maybe local treatment by a vet could help?

  3. I hope the foal’s skin gets better. Maybe there is a volunteer group you could sent your photos to? You look like you’re enjoying your adventure in the pasture communing with your four-legged friends.

    1. Thank you very much, JoAnna. Good suggestion. There is a professional body of Agisters whose responsibility takes in the health of the animals. I will contact them today.

    1. I knew you would have some idea, Lavinia. Whether or not it is ringworm your link has prompted me to contact the Agisters who patrol the forest seeking problems – there is also an annual roundup where the animals are all given health checks, but it clearly can’t wait that long. Thank you very much.

  4. It’s possible the long-legged foal was attacked by a virulent dog —his reaction on coming upon a gentler member of the canine community hints at a strong possibility of the same. The cattle seem to have settled for a siesta under the somnolent skies.

  5. This has been a pleasant meander through the area. Jackie’s foal-in-the-ditch is an interesting photograph and I enjoyed seeing the nest too.

  6. Derrick, I saw in the comments that you have alerted the authorities to the foal’s condition. Thank you so much for stepping up and bringing in help. Do keep us informed. xo

  7. Wonderful photos Derrick. What a sad condition for the foal. I noticed its knocked-knee situation before I even read your post. I am glad you reported it to get it some help. Great posts

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