Of all of Doc’s reluctant ladies, it seems Brumby, Jasmine and Aztec are the most independent. This will come as no surprise to fans of Brumby; she even walked away from long-time mate Jackson on several occasions. While in the Pryors this year I often observed Brumby off, doing her own thing but keeping an eye on the band at the same time. I like to jokingly refer to Doc’s band as Brumby’s band….I think she would appreciate that. In fact, one morning Sandy and I woke up to find Doc’s band was missing Brumby, Aztec, Heritage and Firestorm. We thought the mares must have stayed with Firestorm to foal, but as Quietstorm was not born for a couple more weeks, we can only guess at why, and how, the group of four mares had managed to separate from the larger band. By the time we saw the band again, it was fully intact.
Mother and daughter pair Aztec and Jasmine are also in the habit of walking away from their stallion. When Jasmine left her natal band to join Jackson, Aztec would often visit her daughter. Jasmine never seemed 100% settled with Jackson’s band as her band of choice, and it wasn’t unusual to hear that she wasn’t spotted with the band, even after it seemed that she had permanently moved on from her birth harem. It seems like the two girls haven’t quite kicked the habit, even with Doc’s more domineering personality.
Aztec and Jasmine have been frequently sighted with Cappuccino’s band, and last year I did see Aztec with the dun stallion. However, though reports have indicated that the mares are still wavering between the two bands, in the 3 week time span I was in the Pryors this year I only ever saw Aztec and Jasmine with Doc. This wasn’t for lack of trying on the mares’ part.
In one instance, while Doc was busy getting rejected by Galena, Aztec and Jasmine grazed steadily closer to Cappuccino’s band. Once they were close enough they started actively walking over to the other horses. They would have made it all the way but Jasmine suddenly gave a soft whinny to her “other” family and the cat was let out of the bag. A very stressed Doc burst out of the cover he was standing in and raced after the mother/daughter pair. The girls made a run for it but Cappuccino wasn’t interested in getting involved in the domestic dispute so Doc managed to swing them around and chase them back over to the rest of his band.
Unfortunately, at this point Doc was rather irritated and raging with testosterone, so he roughly gathered his mares and began pushing them around. It isn’t hard to see that Doc can get easily stressed with his large group of mares, nor is it tough to imagine why they resent his style of leadership. It will be interesting to see how Doc’s saga plays out.