Born Feral?

Our new paper discusses how the term “feral” is constructed and understood. Link to open access article below. Abstract This paper examines the use of the term “feral” as a form of control over other animals. The concept of this “power word” is explored within the context of what it means for those who findContinue reading “Born Feral?”

New book: The Horse: A natural history

I’m proud, delighted and very pleased with my new recently published book, co-authored with Catrin Rutland, Associate Professor of Anatomy and Developmental Genetics at Nottingham Trent University. An evolutionary, anatomical, behavioural and anthrozoological overview aimed at equine professionals, enthusiastic amateurs and undergraduates, it’s an easily-readable and accessible book that has been academically peer reviewed byContinue reading “New book: The Horse: A natural history”

Equine herd dynamics

I recently replied to a forum question and have been asked to publish it as a blog to a wider audience. The question provided this information: The horse had been with same caregiver for 22 years, since a foal. Described as “a dominant horse but in a good way. A kind leader. He only hasContinue reading “Equine herd dynamics”

A snippet on habituation

Originally posted on Ethology – Wild Equus – Horses – Behavior:
Habituation is one of those terms habitually (see I did it again) used in training and experimental protocols. Trouble is, it is so overused and underdefined that its significance has been frayed at the edges, and is used by most as a term that…

Winter Welfare

If your horses are healthy they will benefit physically and mentally if you keep them unclipped, unrugged, outdoors with good natural shelter, and in a familiar social group. Oldies/arthritics/poorlies may benefit from a rug, always take individual needs and environment into account.  See this well-referenced article below for more info. http://academialiberti.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/thermoregulation-in-horses-in-cold-time.html?m=1

Social cohesion in horse groups

Horses evolved to live in highly social groups; however in many countries it is traditional to keep them individually in stables, or turned out singly in paddocks.  It is becoming increasingly understood that this causes health and behaviour problems, including aggression.  In contrast, aggressive encounters are rare in properly introduced, established groups, where management meetsContinue reading “Social cohesion in horse groups”

Equine evolution sets new DNA record

700,000-year-old horse genome is the oldest known DNA sequence, beating the previous record of 80,000 years by tens of millenia! This study, reported in the journal Nature, rewrites the evolutionary history of the horse and redefines how far back in time scientists can travel using DNA sequences as their guide. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/06/130626-ancient-dna-oldest-sequenced-horse-paleontology-science/ photograph by Michael Nichols,Continue reading “Equine evolution sets new DNA record”