Sunday, 21 September 2014

Breanna's first romance

Our 3 year old bay roan filly Breanna de Kingmaker had her first romance this Spring.  She was covered by our black stallion Wilf  - Thornville Pride - initially too successfully as an ultrasound scan at 14 days gestation showed that she had conceived twins! Our vet managed to squeeze one of the embryos and a subsequent scan confirmed that Breanna had maintained her pregnancy. Her foal is due in late May 2015. He/she will be the first grandchild for our bay roan stallion Coverdales Carnival King.


Monday, 18 August 2014

Splash !!!

We had torrential rain in mid-May following Emperor's birth, but we don't like to keep our new foals stabled, so at 3 days of age, Impy discovered puddles the hard way!

I was fortunate to have my point-and-shoot camera in my pocket and realised what was about to happen as Impy was turned-out and set off on his first mad dash of the morning. I just managed to drag the camera out and aim it roughly in the direction of the silver blur as Impy went careering through a deep puddle at the gallop....

SPLASH !!!!! Water everywhere. A thoroughly soaked and somewhat shocked little foal. A look from Inca as if to say "well that serves you right dear", and one of those classic foal memories that will stay in our minds for ever.

Introducing Emperor de Kingmaker

Inca (Wolsey Quebec) gave birth to her fourth foal at 1.05am on 19th May 2014, bang on her due date. The new baby is a classy black colt with a central star, who we have named Emperor de Kingmaker, as he has a very proud and imperious look. He is a lively and mischievous boy, so very quickly acquired the pet name of Impy. Given that Inca's previous foals have all been fillies, he is quite a shock to her system!

Emperor's father is our black stallion Thornville Pride who has almost 100% Wheatside bloodlines. We hope to find a new home for Emperor where he will remain entire and be licensed as a stallion to help preserve these important bloodlines in the Dales breed.

Impy at 1 day old :

Impy at 4 days old :


Impy at 12 days old :


Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Introducing Equinox de Kingmaker

Tetley (Twywell Rosie Leigh) gave birth to her second foal at 1am on 17th April 2014. The new baby is a beautiful rich bay colt, with no white markings, who we have named Equinox de Kingmaker.

Equinox's father is our bay roan stallion Coverdales Carnival King.

From the outset, it was apparent that Equinox had the most wonderful, gentle nature. I am writing this blog in August (so much for my pledge to keep up-to-date!!!) and it's fair to say that Equinox has never put a hoof wrong in the 3½ months that have passed since his birth. He is a fun, friendly, athletic foal who loves to run and play. He has a wonderful, high-stepping trot, and he's doing really well with his early lessons - the "Mr Perfect" of our 2014 foals.

The photos below are of Equinox from birth to 3½ months old : 


Saturday, 24 May 2014

Elianne - growing up fast

Elianne is growing up to be a truly delightful foal. She's a very friendly but respectful girl who loves human attention. She's full of confidence and has a really great outlook on life - it's all about FUN for Elianne! She's a pleasure to have around.

Elianne is aged 6-8 weeks in these photographs :



Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Introducing ENVOY de Kingmaker, aka ZIGGY STARDUST

Becky (Packsfield Ella Beck) gave birth to her third foal, a RARE bay roan colt with central star, at 10.30pm on 6th April 2014. We have named the new colt Envoy de Kingmaker.

Envoy quickly acquired the nickname Ziggy Stardust. He was born just over 1 week early and spent the first hour of his life zig-zagging determinedly across his foaling-box whilst he worked out how to co-ordinate wobbly legs with brain! He fell over a few times - hence the "foal who fell to Earth", plus he has a sprinkling of silver hairs on his hindquarters which adds to the "stardust" effect.

Ziggy is a loveable, chunky foal with a pretty head and a beautiful expression. He looks to have the conformation and temperament to be run on as a stallion prospect.  Ziggy's father Coverdales Carnival King is still the ONLY licensed bay roan Dales stallion in the World, and we believe that Ziggy is the only entire bay roan colt, so he may well grow up to have a future helping to ensure the continuation of the bay roan colour in the Dales breed. Time will tell.

Ziggy is a quiet, inquisitive foal, with an obvious cheeky streak that is just waiting to come to the fore. His dam Becky is a little over-protective of her new baby and rounds him up whenever he runs off to explore on his own. However, as time progresses, Ziggy is starting to rebel - he runs away faster! - and Becky is tiring of her disciplinarian role, so a lively, more confident Ziggy is now starting to appear.

Photos of Ziggy from birth - 3 weeks old


Introducing ELIANNE de Kingmaker

Gem (Manorian Moonstone) gave birth to her sixth foal, a tall, whole black filly, at 3.20am on 18th March 2014. We have named the new filly Elianne, in memory of my Parisian great-auntie Elianne, plus it's names beginning with "E" for horses born in France this year!

Elianne is a delightful foal. She is extremely curious (probably better described as downright nosey!) and chock-full of confidence. She loves human attention, and is racing ahead with her early lessons. She loves to be groomed and by the age of just 4 weeks, was standing perfectly to have her mane and tail combed, and all four hooves picked-out. She takes all new experiences in her stride and seems to be fazed by nothing!

Photos of Elianne from birth - 3 weeks old



Catch-up. Must try harder!!!

Last year I was terribly remiss in posting regular updates on the Kingmaker blog, and we're now 5 months into 2014 and I have failed to post any 2014 news. I really must apply more effort, or even SOME effort!

So, it's catch-up time :

2014 got off to an exciting start with the arrival of two new ponies all the way from County Durham. Kingmaker Union Jacques, a rising 6 year old black Dales gelding bred by us, came home to France to be my principle riding pony. Jac has been brilliantly broken to ride by his previous owner Sarah Dowson and is an honest and enthusiastic pony who will turn his hooves to anything. He loves to jump, although I'm not too sure if I still do!!!

Jac arrived fit and fully clipped. Cue some fun rug shopping, although I think this one I chose was a tad too big!

Number 2 pony is (whispers) not a Dales but their smaller cousin the Fell Pony. 
We are delighted to welcome the very pretty seal-brown Fell mare Greenholme Spice to France. Spice is unbroken and has spent her life as a broodmare. She makes super, typey foals. Spice was purchased in-foal to Fell Pony stallion Grahamsley Cracker Jack, so we will look forward to the arrival of her baby towards the end of May 2014. It will be interesting to compare the two breeds.  

February brought some spectacular flooding, leaving many of our fields and driveway inundated. Turn-out for the horses became a logistical nightmare, and as the waters receded we were left with a sea of deep and very gloopy mud, which the horses seemed to cope with admirably, whilst we humans fell over in it many times!  

March arrived with several dark and heavy hail storms :
...and some spectacular winter sunsets. I was delighted to see this large bird of prey (possibly a Buzzard as we have several resident pairs of those on the farm) perched high up in a tree enjoying the fiery sky as much as me : 
King also seemed to appreciate the beautiful evenings, or maybe he was just dreaming of girlfriends to come :

Meanwhile, King and Wilf's former wives were all becoming nicely rounded. From left to right are Becky, Inca, Gem, Tetley and Spice :
Which brings us nicely on to our 2014 foals....