DID YOU KNOW
that you can experience
Lucy's lifestyle and teachings with her
Opportunities to study wild horses in Spain
This unique project was set up by ethologist and trainer Lucy Rees to promote the study of equine ethology in Europe through direct observation of a feral herd living in completely natural conditions. We offer this facility to non--invasive research projects, to Equine Science students and veterinarians, to colleges and schools, and to those interested in natural horse behaviour and welfare.
Theory sessions on basic ethological principles and equine ethology
Observation and identification of behaviours (the ethogram)
Data collection methods and analysis
The opportunity to plan and carry out a pilot study designed to answer a particular question.
We adjust teaching level according to the students and the duration of the course. We also design courses for special groups, for instance schools, undergraduates or M.Sc. students. Study groups are welcome to bring their own tutor; we provide a guide to help find and identify the pottokas. We can also accommodate and help longer-term researchers.
We constantly need volunteers who wish to help and learn.
FOR MORE INFORMATION AND ACCOMMODATION DETAILS
Please email Bonny at firstname.lastname@example.org
A ONCE IN A LIFETIME OPPORTUNITY!!
Writer, ethologist and horse trainer, Lucy has travelled and worked in many countries and equestrian disciplines discovering the easiest, most universally applicable and successful ways of understanding and working with horses.
"To understand an animal's nature you have to see it in its natural state"
Raised among horses and fascinated by animal behaviour from an early age, Lucy studied zoology at University College London, specializing in ethology and neuroscience, before doing postgraduate research in Sussex University, working between times with a variety of trainers. Returning to her native Wales, she had a rather atypical riding centre in Snowdonia, where she began training wild Welsh ponies, became known for her success with “problem” horses, edited a climbing magazine and wrote her first books. Her insight and teaching led to the publication of The Horse´s Mind (1984), a book that pre-dated modern trends and has had enormous influence for its combination of an ethological approach with wide experience gained working in Britain, Ireland, the USA and Portugal.
Apart from writing books and articles and teaching equine ethology in universities in Wales, England, Spain and many Latin American countries, Lucy has been the protagonist of three documentaries: To Ride a Wild Horse (HTV 1984) in which she caught and rode a wild mustang stallion in Arizona; Chamana de Caballos (The Horse Shaman, Catalonia 2002) and Salvajes (Wild Pottokas, Alucina 2017).
Those who watch Lucy working often say she is a horse whisperer, but she is guided by scientific principles: above all, the observation of feral horses.
"To understand horses and their difficulties in our hands, we need to watch them as they really are, without anthropomorphic interpretations and expectations"
To this end, she has studied many populations of feral horses in the Americas and Australia, above all in Venezuela, where for years she ran residential ethology courses. These studies led to Horses In Company (2017), a book whose evolutionary perspective revolutionizes our view of horse society.
They also convinced Lucy that anybody who wants to understand and work with horses must have the opportunity to observe them in truly natural circumstances. To this end, she started the Pottoka Project, in which she released a herd of feral Basque ponies in the mountains of north Extremadura, where she lives. Now, European students, professionals and horse lovers can share and contribute to the ever-expanding understanding that the study of natural behaviour brings.
Horses in Company
Paperback, 160 pages, 28 September 2017
Horses in Company is an in-depth study of the social relations of horses in the wild. The book discusses how, during evolution, the need for collective defence against predators shaped horses characteristic behaviour and reactions. It aims to help the reader understand how in domestic conditions, unnatural resource competitions and stress affect social relations, leading to widespread misinterpretation and misunderstanding. This radically new analysis of equine society is based on the author's first-hand observations, and opens the way to a new understanding of horses at both ethological and practical levels.
to read Bonny's
Blog about her
Bonny has been a fascinated observer of horses her entire life. She has worked as an equine podiatrist from 2005 specialising in working with unhandled, troubled, feral and wild equines. She is a founder member of the Equine Podiatry Association UK. Bonny has studied many aspects of equine health and well being including anatomy and physiology, nutrition, biomechanics and behaviour. With her own horses, Bonny likes to undertake long-distance journeys, attend classical dressage clinics and Le Trec events as well as just hanging out. She has lived in the Highlands of Scotland for over 20 years and is an active member of her local community.
Bonny is presently on sabbatical in zimbabwe studying zebras. She is still organising courses and tours and is acting as a point of contact for Lucy.
for Lucy Rees
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Bonny's Blog: touching-wild.blog
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PLEASE NOTE: These emails go to Bonny Mealand, Lucy's UK Representative. While we will pass on your comments to Lucy when we can, we cannot guarantee a response directly from Lucy herself.