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Do you have "mixed" herds?

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  • Do you have "mixed" herds?

    How do you handle yours herds in pasture situations? We have always kept our mares with foals, our barren mares, and our young horses in different pastures. Does anyone keep them all together and if so, how do you begin this?

    I have always been worried that the single mares will interfere with the mare/foal pairs, but my husband disagrees.

    What do you think? Thanks!

  • #2
    I've always pastured all my horses together. Mare with foal, maiden mare, geldings...everyone gets along. When introducing a new horse I've always done so slowly by pasturing in adjoining fields for a few weeks and then introducing the others one at a time. In fact until reading some of the posts on this forum it never occured to me that some people separate by gender. I should add that I've had the same horses together for a long time and rarely add another.
    "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."


    • #3
      The horses get separated because there isnt enough space for them all in one place! Other than that, there isnt really any rhyme or reason to how they are separated. For your kindof question about maidens/open mares in with mares and foals... it really depends on the mares temperment. good mares will be fine. extremely agressive or dominant mares will not. (at least that has been my experience)


      • #4
        All together mostly. Mares, geldings (although these are rare on my place!), foals, ponies. IME the period of working-out-drama is no longer or shorter with either gender or age groups, and depends entirely on the temperaments of the individual animals.

        Right now I do have a pregnant mare that just came in turned out only with my "boss mare" for a few days, since they are previous herdmates from the winter at my trainer's barn and I know they get along well. The mare is in her last month of pregnancy, a maiden, and I want to ease her into the herd (which also contains one rather obnoxious young mare with a suckling at her side) as gently as possible. With Bonnie as her "sponsor" I'm hoping she won't be bullied as much by crazy-mama.
        Click here before you buy.


        • #5
          We had 2 mares together with 2 geldings. One gelding was recently sold and a pregnant mare brought in.

          Now we have a mare and a gelding together. We have a skinnier tb who can go anywhere, with the rest of the herd, with the new horse, or out alone. The pregnant mare is in her own paddock though she gets along well with the skinny tb. The mare foaled yesterday and is obviously protective of her foal. So they get their own paddock.


          • #6
            I've only ever had my mare at boarding barns, never a breeding facility, so there was never "maiden" and "barren" mares, it was just "mares".

            That being said, she's lived in mixed gelding/mare herds, and only mare herds. I do prefer mare only herds, if it can be done. There just seems to be less fighting and picking at each other, when they're not competing for girlfriends and boyfriends.
            Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!


            • #7
              I used to keep geldings and mares together. It never mattered up until a month ago when an experience broodmare came to the stable and promptly went into heat. She convinced the 4 year old gelding (by putting her butt in his face, slamming her butt into him, etc) that it would be a good idea to mount her, which he did. He caused her a UTI and later when she went out of heat and the young gelding didn't understand this, she kicked him hard enough he had to be on stall rest for 2 weeks. So, now its mare pastures and gelding pastures.
              My treasures do not clink together or glitter, they gleam in the sun and neigh in the night.


              • #8
                Originally posted by PRS View Post
                I've always pastured all my horses together. Mare with foal, maiden mare, geldings...everyone gets along. When introducing a new horse I've always done so slowly by pasturing in adjoining fields for a few weeks and then introducing the others one at a time. In fact until reading some of the posts on this forum it never occured to me that some people separate by gender. I should add that I've had the same horses together for a long time and rarely add another.
                I do this also - with the exception of course of the stallion and I have an alpha mare that I don't put in with foals/yearlings.


                • #9
                  Depends on the specific horses.

                  Normally, I leave a mare and foal together alone for turnout for a good 3-4 weeks, then integrate back in with my herd.

                  Right now I have all mares (four for four fillies born at my place, go figure) but I have had mixed herds with success as well, mares and geldings.


                  • #10
                    I separate by hind shoe status.

                    I put mares and geldings together as long as no one has hind shoes. I have one gelding that has to live alone, but he's a little goofy and has a wicked side kick on him that I think is responsible for a broken leg on a mare of mine a few years ago when they were all running around the field. After that incident I started keeping my show horses (i.e. horses with hind shoes) in their own pastures.
                    Flying F Sport Horses
                    Horses in the NW


                    • #11
                      I used to have mixed herds but now separate mares and geldings. It just seems like there is less drama among the horses. Also, I had a gelding mount an elderly mare and penetrate her, which tore her up pretty badly and required many stitches. That was the end of mixed herds for me, and life has been much more peaceful since.


                      • #12
                        of my 9 groups, 4 are mixed, 2 are all mares, 3 are all boys. i separate the horses based on personalities and what they eat (most of ours live out 24/7, so they eat in the paddocks, and if there's 1 in a group that gets a lot more or a lot less...can cause issues). i have bigger problems with the 3 broodies that live together than any of the coed paddocks.
                        Different Times Equestrian Ventures at Hidden Spring Ranch


                        • #13
                          I have 5 horses at my house- all of which are mine.
                          One field is 3 mares and a gelding. The other is 1 gelding. Everyone is quite happy this way- Gelding by himself seems to prefer being by himself and gets about 4x's more feed than the others which are all easy keepers (they eat in the field together)
                          "As soon as you're born you start dyin'
                          So you might as well have a good time"


                          • #14
                            For safety ~ and allergic to vet bills

                            I generally separate by sex and also by "hind shoe status" ~ as I just HATE vet bills.
                            Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


                            • #15
                              I keep mine seperated. Gelding, stallions and colts go out together. Mares, fillies and babies together. I have had to many geldings that WOULD mount and penetrate any mare in season and viciously fight other "stallions" for "breeding rights" not to mention to many mares that WOULD kick the crap out of any dumb ass gelding. Mares are hussys and gelding are dumb, only the stallions in my life seem to know whats-what! For that reason there is no co-ed in my pastures, lols


                              • #16
                                So for "hind shoe separators"--does each horse with hind shoes get a separate paddock, or do all the hind-shoe-wearers go out together? If so, how does this reduce the risk?
                                Click here before you buy.


                                • #17
                                  We mix at the barns I've been at. Generally no preggo mares, but def mix geldings and mares. My gelding is currently out with two mares. But has previously been out with 4 mares and 2 other geldings. I've worked at barns where they did not mix sexes though. As long as everyone gets along I see no issues.
                                  Custom Painted Brushes: spcustombrushes@gmail.com


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                    So for "hind shoe separators"--does each horse with hind shoes get a separate paddock, or do all the hind-shoe-wearers go out together? If so, how does this reduce the risk?
                                    My horses with hind shoes go out alone.

                                    Only horses with no hind shoes live with other horses on my farm.

                                    So of my [small] herd now I've got 1 gelding in his own pasture, 1 mare in her own pasture, and 3 geldings that live together (I just sold the mare that ruled the roost among the geldings, but up to that point it was 3 geldings and a mare in that field). The 3 geldings are all barefoot and the mare had front shoes only.
                                    Flying F Sport Horses
                                    Horses in the NW


                                    • #19
                                      Hind shoe wearers go "solo" ~ barefoot behind horses same sex go out together.
                                      Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


                                      • #20
                                        I've mixed herds.

                                        I've one herd that's all male but the rest are mixed sex herds.

                                        They range between 5 and 11 in number in a herd and the majority are shod.