By Marty Felix
I first saw the dun foal Shiva in Coal Canyon in April of 2012 when she was just a few days old. She was a cute, energetic baby who was enjoying a little romp down the canyon as her band headed to water. Shiva’s sire was Magnum, a handsome dun stallion, and her dam was Bonita, a dark bay mare (who will also be up for adoption this spring).
My favorite memory of Shiva came in April of 2013, right after her first birthday. A rare late snowstorm dumped 4 inches of snow in the horse area, and I headed up to the range for a hike. I had only walked about a half mile when I spotted Shiva with Inca, a 6-year-old bachelor. I was surprisedbecause Inca hadn’thad much luck with the ladies. He seemed pleasedto have acquired this little yearling.I spent aboutan hour with them, watchingShiva eat snow from the trees while Inca followed her around, not knowing exactly how to act. As I was about to leave them, I heard horses running and whinnying. Magnum, Bonita, and three other members of Magnum’s harem were barreling down the steep cliff on the north side of the canyon. Snow, mud, and rocks were flying as these horses made their rapid descent. Once they arrived at the bottom of the canyon, Magnum didn’t waste any time. He snaked his wayward daughter back to her mom, and then he lit out after Inca. The two stallions had a few brief words, after which Magnum chased Inca all the way to the cattle guard. I thought this was hilarious, and I was glad I was in the right place at the right time so I could witness this incident. I laughed all the way back to my vehicle, wondering why it had taken Magnum and Bonita so long to realize Shiva had slipped away from the band. Maybe they were napping or were so busy grazing, they didn’t notice that Shiva had made her escape.
Shiva was a gadabout many times in her early years. When she was a year and a half old, she spent a few days with Spin, a palomino stallion, before returning to Mom and Dad. She left her family band for good and became one of Gideon’s first harem mares when she was just a
2-year-old. For the most part, she was faithful to Gideon for the next four years, but she did have brief affairs with Medicine Bow and Inca from time to time.
Shiva gave birth to Cole, a blue roan colt, in April of 2015, and she had Bodie, a red roan/dun colt in 2018. Both of these good-looking boys will be available for adoption this spring.
As fate would have it, a friend and I were hiking in Main Canyon the day before the helicopter part of the roundup began, and we got up close and personal with Gideon’s band. We said our good-byes, knowing that some of the eight horses would lose their freedom the very next day. Shiva, Bodie, Willow, and Miracle were indeed taken from Gideon’s band and removed from the range the following day.
When I observed Shiva after she became a harem mare, she was always calm and quiet, and she was a good mother to Cole and Bodie. She got along with the other horses in her band, and I never saw her instigate any trouble. Shiva deserves a forever home with someone special, and I hope this pretty dun mare gets just that come the end of March.
Shiva & Cole
Shiva & Bodie