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Another day goes by peacefully at the Ark.

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Zidane, our only colt, just turned 8 months old last week.

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It’s amazing how quickly they grow!

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Although he still tries to get a sip from his mother from time to time, he’s officially weaned and lives on heaps of green grass of the season, peanut hay and bran mash.

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But he also likes to eat halters, open doors, clip wires, train for stallionhood and do everything else a little horse like him is not supposed to do!

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Amazingly, he’s already grown taller than one month older Diva – and although I chose a small&fast Champion for sire, his mother (Ebony) is large in Nigerien standard, so it’s no surprise that he is tall. From afar, they look like twins, and the best way to tell them apart is that Diva has one white sock and Zidane two. :-)

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Although we’ve enjoyed watching him grow, the time is approaching for Zidane to leave the Ark (which is marked “Equines: Girls Only!”) and move on. As no vet in this country will voluntarily turn a colt into a gelding (“whoEVER thought such a barbaric procedure? to remove his manhood?! NOT happening!”) :-) he will join the other stallions at his father’s stables within short. His new caretaker has promised me that he will not be ridden until he is at least two years old (traditionally, they are broken in as yearlings, often earlier – which is one of the reasons horses in this country rarely live longer than ten years…). Although he’s not as well mannered as the fillies born at the ark (fillies are so much easier to communicate with than colts!), he is already quite the star and has high expectations. We’ll be keeping an eye on him: our very own first-born colt! Having seen what what a handsome boy he has turned out to be in these few months, I expect him to become quite a gorgeous stallion! By the way, have you noticed the unique mark in his face? A “ridge” growing in the opposite direction. And according to my ridgeback Sheba, this is proof that they are related! :-D