AORE Association News June 2015 - Page 10

A Unique Spring Break Trip (cont.) We observed those bands through binoculars. On the first day in the field, we saw a brand new colt, estimated to be only a few hours old. One of the trip participants named her Deja Blue, her last name taken from her father and lead stallion, Blue. Her mother protected her while she tried to learn to run. After five day’s work, (and hiking and camping) we had a working knowledge of the wild horse bands, and the dangers that surround them without any protective legislation-thanks to presentations made by Homeboy, Judy, and Paul, a doctor who studies ecology and biology and teaches at the University of New Mexico. We also had given Homeboy enough notes and photographs of the horses to create a database, which will hopefully help them in a legal battle to protect the horses from slaughter. By the time we returned to campus, we had our work clothes and boots covered with a layer of dirt and eleven student strangers had become a family, met interesting people and about 100 horses had become officially documented on the private mesa. After coming back to campus, I got many nods from other folks in student affairs because of that collaboration and the impact it had on the students. It was one more way of showing that outdoor programs at universities can have something in common with other areas of student affairs/student life. There is already talk that they want another one of those trips! 10