Friday, June 30, 2017

2017 Foals of Chincoteague Ponies 1 - 10

These are photos from different sources and people, some are copyrighted (mainly by Darcy and Steve Cole, owners of DSC Photography of Greenbackville, Virginia), some are not.  Copyrighted photos are always marked so.
   The names in quotation marks after the sex id are my personal names for the foals - of course, whoever actually purchases the babies will give them their registered names - but this helps me keep them straight....
   The photos are also NOT arranged in chronologically - I just try to choose shots that give a good view of markings on each side, as well as a facial shot...   Sometimes a butt shot will be included because of bulls-eyes or tail markings - a half-color tail, or a tipped tail, etc...

#1  -  filly  "March Hare"    sire:  Legacy;  dam:  Anne Bonny       5 March 2017
Mom, baby, and Dad

#2 - colt  "Storm Warning"    sire: Legacy;  dam:  Sweetheart          13 March 2017

#3 -  colt  "Lost Tide"   sire:  Riptide;  dam:  Suede    27 March - 31 March 2017
     died from massive umbilical infection

#4 - colt  "Swan"   sire: Legacy; dam: Little Duckie     27 March 2017

#5 - filly  "Twisted Spots"  sire: Legacy; dam: Splash of Freckles      31 March 2017

#6 - filly  "Aquila d'Oro"   sire: Chief;  dam: Lady    7 April 2017

#7 - filly  "Tidal Star"    sire: Riptide; dam: Secret       15 April 2017

Mom, baby, and Dad

# 8 - filly  "Festival Queen"   sire: Prince; dam: Carnival Baby   17 April 2017

#9 - colt  "Black Prince"   sire: Prince;  dam: Baybe    19 April 2017

#10 - colt  "Ken's Heart"      sire: Ken; dam: Whisper        20 April 2017

Things To Do On Chincoteague With Children - Part 1

When I write about things to do on Chincoteague Island in Virginia, I must make it clear that these items include things to do on and in the waters surrounding both Chincoteague and Assateague Islands in Virginia, as well as some wonderful places to visit on the nearby mainland of Virginia.  The island of Chincoteague is, due to it's very nature, tied to the water and marine life.  The portion of Assateague Island located in Virginia is both a seashore and a wildlife refuge - Assateague National Seashore and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge (which, confusingly, is located on Assategue, not Chincoteague).   People live on Chincoteague Island; people visit Assateague Island.
     As a former teacher of kindergarten and third grade, as well as being an assistant in high school classes, and being a step-mother and grandmother, I know very well that each child is unique, each has his/her own interests, and that attention spans can vary wildly - pretty much the same as adults.  As a parent, you know your child's likes and dislikes and attention span.  I am providing a list of multiple items that you can do with your child while on the islands of Chincoteague and Assateague.
  * If you have never visited the island before, the first thing that I recommend that you do is - open all of your vehicle's windows (weather permitting) as you go around Pump House Turn on 175, having passed the NASA Visitor's Center, and once you see the causeway and bridges that will lead you to Chincoteague.  If it's high tide, you can smell the salt air and listen to the calls of the gulls and other waterfowl.  If it's low tide, you'll be hit with the very distinctive smell of Chincoteague marsh mud, along with the smells of salt water, salt air and the sounds of local wildlife.   Also, be aware of turtles on the causeway and try to avoid them - they are precious usually only one son or daughter will survive to reproduce.
  * Depending upon where you are staying, your choices immediately multiply upon arrival.  People visit for a great many reasons, and it depends upon your interests as a group, as to what you do. If you're staying at a hotel/motel or residence with a pool, and either are afraid of the ocean, or don't like to be sandy, then the pool is the best place to swim, period.
   * Once you have checked into your residence for the visit, I suggest that you visit the Chincoteague Chamber of Commerce, where friendly island natives will answer your questions, and can provide brochures and information on just about everything on the island.  You can also visit their website -  and get up-to-date information.
   * Chincoteague has been the home of people who make their living on the water since the late 1600s (when my family arrived there) - the people are called watermen, and they fish, shrimp, crab, clam, oyster, and now aqua-farm for their livelihoods.  Up until 1920, people lived on Assateague, and horses, cattle, sheep, goats and pigs had free range there.  We also hunted ducks and geese and deer there.  In 1921 most of the village of Assateague was moved by raft and barge to Piney Island and the East Side of Chincoteague.
    If you are interested in learning about sea life and the ecology of the waters surrounding Chincoteague and Assategue Islands, the best thing you can do is take an eco-tour with Barry Frishman.  Captain Barry's Back Bay Cruises is a hands-on experience for young and old (or if you prefer to sit back and just watch, that's OK, too), and each time you go out with him you have a different experience.  Since the waters, shoals, sandbars and tumps are always in flux, you never know exactly what you'll see and/or do.  Barry is an experienced waterman, a previous tug boat captain, has been a Red Cross volunteer around the world, has a huge crew of grandchildren, and is a well-known artist, as well.  He is an extraordinary man, and his excursions never fail to delight - many people return for his cruises each summer.  His website may be found at:   and he is also on Facebook at:
    Captain Barry is a must do each and every time I revisit my old home.
  * Bike all over the islands - bring your own or rent one by the hour, day, or week.
  * Hike the trails on Chincoteague and on Assateague.
  * Go to the beach - swim, sunbathe, collect shells, fly a kite, picnic.......
  * Visit the Museum of  Chincoteague     ( )
  * Birding - the CNWR is on the Atlantic Flyway, and over 300 species of birds may be seen over the course of the year.  Last year, the Fall Flight Index estimated that over 90 million ducks passed through the area...
   Much, much more tomorrow.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Assateague Island Scenes

A black-crowned night heron - known on Chincoteague as a "wop"

Believe it or not, Whisper of a Living Legend has already had her baby this year...
getting up from a nap

Cattle egret with a snack

Filly born to Surf Queen and Hoppy on 26 June
(The photo above and the one below were taken by DSC Photography)

Ace's Black Tie Affair - due to the mud, you can't see both hind stockings above his hocks

Assateague sunrise

A royal tern

Assateague full moon rising

(l to r) May's Grand Slam threatens 15 Friends of Freckles, while Dreamer's Gift
tries to get out of the way (which makes her look like she's falling over)

Here and There, Bits and Pieces

I am going to try to get back into the habit of blogging daily again.  I have jobs through the end of July, but nothing yet in August, though I'm sure that a few of my regular clients will suddenly remember that they haven't yet scheduled me to cover for their vacations.  I've been busy trying to keep up with all the new foals on the southern end of Assateague, taking care of multiple houses and the attached critters, working on three families genealogy, trying to keep up with the news, and reading for pleasure.
    I stopped in at the pharmacy yesterday to pick up my anxiety/high blood pressure medication, and received quite a surprise.  I normally get a 90 day supply of 90 50mg tablets four times each year.  Yesterday I was given 30 tablets, and was informed that the pharmacy would not have them in stock again until September - and that I needed to contact my MD and ask to try a different medication.  I just checked for shortages of the medication, but could find none.  I will be calling another pharmacy to see if they have the same problem, and, if not, will transfer my prescription to them.  If there is a shortage of this very prevalent beta-blocker, I want to know why it wasn't recognized sooner - and I guess I'll need to call my MD.  But this has me quite upset, which isn't good for my blood pressure, nor my anxiety.  Grrrrrrrrrrrrr!
   My wonderful 2-year-old Chincoteague filly, Surfer Princess, has apparently settled in with Tornado Legacy's herd.  Legacy is a buckskin pinto, and the Princess is a rich copper color.  I'm hoping she won't have a foal until the summer that she turns four, but I can't control Mother Nature.  Her dam, Surf Queen, has finally settled in Hoppy's herd.  Hoppy is the nickname of Effie's Papa Bear, and he is a 15 hand bay stallion with no markings, not even a brand.  On Monday, June 26, Surf Queen had a half-sister to the Princess - another gorgeous filly, solid bay with three white anklets below her fetlocks and a black right hind.   And I think her legs are longer than the Princess's were...
    At the moment, we're sitting at 60 foals born in the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge.  There have been, so far, no new births reported since Surf Queen on Monday - but today might bring new sightings - and there have been three deaths.  One of the deaths, perhaps, might have been prevented - the mare White Saddle lost her foal last year to the marsh, and the same thing occurred this this year.  I am going to ask the Pony Committee to, next year, take her and her newborn to one of the farms on Chincoteague, so that White Saddle won't lead her baby where it should not go again.  The other two deaths were due to a massive infection incurred at birth, and to a congenital leg abnormality.  I'll soon start posting photos of all the foals born so far this year, in order of birth.
    Despite the snow melt making our local creeks run a bit higher than normal, our vegetation is very dry.  There was a grass fire that burned 3 acres yesterday because some idiot set off fireworks along the side of a road - in someone's hay field.  We had an adult black bear spend yesterday in a tree at the corner of 16th Street and Spruce Avenue here in Boulder.  It moved back to the open green space to the west of town during the night.  And an adult moose decided to visit the Flatirons Mall - at an 8-lane Interstate intersection the day before yesterday.  Wildlife officials had to tranquilize the moose, after which they trailered it to South Park, where they turned it loose.
   I am upset, and will stay upset, for as long as the Pompous Pricktator is in the White House.  I well remember that it took almost two years for Nixon to resign - and I hope and pray that this Putin-Sucker will not be able to hold out that long.  That oddly-coiffed creature is an abomination on this planet.  I would dance with joy if he and his cronies were suddenly dropped into Hell through a fiery maw that suddenly opened up beneath their feet!  That mass of orange crass is an ass.  Disgusting.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Island Sunrises and Sunsets - Photos

Chincoteague Bay sunset

Assateague sunrise

Chincoteague Channel sunset

Happy and Bodacious Bob with Assateague sunset
(Photo by Beached Paws Photography)

Chincoteague Channel sunset

Crab pot sunrise
(Photo by Beached Paws Photography)

Marsh Island sunset

Critters, Wild and Tame

It doesn't seem like a week since I sat down in front of a blank blog page...  All sorts of things are going on in the news and wildlife areas.  And I've been taking care of multiple houses full of critters, as people decide to vacation on a whim, without planning for pet care.  I've been running around like crazy.  I think I have two days off, Wednesday and Thursday this week, if nothing else pops up.
   I've started re-reading my Robin Hobb collection, and am currently reading Dragon Haven.  After I read her books, I'll hit my Rafael Sabatini novels, and then my un-edited editions of The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers.  That should keep me busy for a little while.
  I received my National Geographic DNA information back some time ago - my Haplogroup is J1c4.  But I have recently sent my DNA for processing to both Ancestry and to 23AndMe, also.  I'm waiting to see what is reported by the other two agencies...
   We've recently had moose in North Boulder - a woman was tending her garden on the edge of Wonderland Lake, and said she "suddenly felt a presence looming over" her.  It was a mother moose with twin calves, and the mother decided the woman was threatening her babies.  She was knocked down and walked upon.  Luckily, she only had scrapes and bruises.  And another moose with a single calf was reported at the Justice Center near the end of Boulder Canyon.
   Of course it's now summer, and we're having our usual incursions of coyotes, mountain lions and black bears.  The coyotes have been grabbing small dogs who are off-leash on walking, jogging, and biking paths, as well as cats loose in neighborhoods.  The mountain lions are grabbing the mule deer and fawns.  The bears are smashing bee hives and stealing honey, as well as raiding any bird feeders they can reach.  A friend has a one-inch thick wrought iron post for her feeders, and thought they were safe - this morning the post was bent at a 70 degree angle and the bird feeders were crushed and empty on the ground.  And folks around my sister and brother-in-laws house now have teen-aged bobcats out hunting with their parents, as well.  The fox are staying under cover as much as possible.  The cottontail rabbit birth explosion is feeding most of the smaller predators.
    Tess, one of the dogs I care for, is not doing well at the moment.  She started having seizures last fall.  They began occurring every 4 days a couple of months ago, and she has finally been placed on Potassium Bromide as a daily medication. (Her owner is a very firm believer in holistic medicine and diet taking care of everything.)  The K-Bro medication has increased her appetite amazingly, as well as her thirst.  But the main side effect is ataxia, her hind legs don't support her well...  The vet told the owner that once Tess reaches her optimal medication level, she'll return to normal.  The vet told the owner it would take one month.  I read the information, and it says the optimal level is reached in three to four months...  We'll have to see.  In the meantime, the dog who always bounced and danced on her hind legs is now shuffling with her nose to the ground.  It's pretty sad...
   Still at 59 new foals on the Chincoteague NationalWildlife Refuge - 56 after the three losses.  One foal died from an umbilical infection, one foal got stuck in the marsh mud and couldn't break free, and one had a congenital defect of the forelegs, which could not be healed.  All the others are quite bouncy and bold.  As usual, there are some really stupendous pinto markings, quite a few solids with great conformation, and a few real stand-outs.  I'm happy with the foals so far...