At sunset in Sotardalen

As the sun was setting this Thursday evening three Nokota mares were relaxing after yet another warm and sunny April-like-day in March. The winter is definately over and our three Nokota horses are in a really good mode.

Now when the temperatures are getting up well over freezing even at night, the horses are drinking more water and washing their faces deep in the bucket.  

This will be the first spring in Sweden for these horses and they seem to like it.

As always spring is a busy time of year, more fences to set up, trees to take down, the stable needs a tack room and a kitchenette, tiles on the roof (or maybe grass), not to mention a new round pen and the …

Well, guess we won’t pull this of any sooner if we bite our backs, might as well take one step at a time and enjoy the ride, horses prefer to trot.

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4 thoughts on “At sunset in Sotardalen

  1. i just read about some research that seems to confirm what i have suspected: that the little automatic waterers fall short of horses needs because they love to splash and submerge their faces and drink more when they can do so, and thus it made me happy to read this :-)

    But something else that i still need to learn much more about is Swedish soil and its particular shortcomings, particularly selenium. We need to run some soil tests across our farm, but it is my understanding that Sweden is in general very deficient in Se, whereas the Dakotas are very rich and rife with Se concentrating plants which the horses utilize from time to time even when there is much else to choose from. So we have been giving ours free choice of different salt blocks, but so far they eat 5 to 10 times more of the “viltsten” from Granngården compared to white, universal, and even “häst”, and i strongly suspect it is because they need and crave more Se. So here is the profile of the blocks from Granngården, and i will list the häst first and vilt second by each mineral: Magnesium 0.11% v. 0.15%, 400 mg/kg v. 2,000 mg/kg Koppar, 280 mg/kg v. 300 mg/kg Zink, 200 mg/kg v. 200 mg/kg Mangan, 210 mg/kg v. 0 järn, 15 mg/kg v. 50 mg/kg Jod, 15 mg/kg v. 60 mg/kg Kobalt, 5 mg/kg v. 30 mg/kg Selen (but the häst has a blend of yeast formed and natriumselenit while the vilt is only natriumselenit)

    Koppar is also very important for hooves, so maybe it is part of their choice, too… but i trust their choice over my own ;-) And i would be curious to hear what your horses choose first? In NoDak they eat roughly equal parts of white versus mineral stone throughout the year, though it varies greatly with the season and the specific pasture (more to support my suspicion that the horses make their own wise choices instead of hapharzardly consuming as most seem to think) and may if anything tend towards a little heavier consumption of mineral salt, but certainly not on the order of 5:1 or more…

    Thank you for always sharing so much to make us smile, and best!

    • Hi Seth!!
      Yes we have noticed that the horses like to drink (and wash) water the traditional way. Now when it’s “warm” they seem to use more water than when it was freezing, but they also know how to crack ice with their hooves.
      Interesting about the (Se) and salt blocks.
      Our horses has eaten 2×10 kg of saltblocks since November and are now in for the third. (Additionally they have two small blocks in the stable.) Some of it gets washed away by rain, the last bit is also lost/left, but it is still a lot of salt!
      I think we bought them at Börjes, will check the content but it is probably the same blocks as Granngården Häst. Everybody says Hi!

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