THE WILD HORSES
OF CALVANA .
The Horses of Calvana are one of the reasons for loving this land so deeply.
For all of us in A.S.S.C., they have been one of the cardinal points for our motivation. Enlivening every landscape, they leave visitors venturing into the territory for the first time amazed.
These animals, which have been running wild for generations now, live in harmony with a territory that can be very harsh.
At present there is no plan to protect the horses, and many times in recent years we have been called upon to help the ones that find themselves in trouble for one reason or another.
Like little Crostino, found trapped in a muddy pond when just one day old;
Nina, who on her second day of life fell into a ravine full of brambles and was abandoned by her mother, who had lost all hope;
Margot, who was dying during the difficult birth of her foal;
And not last Neri, who had been trying for months to survive with a broken leg, and many others that we have helped to bring their suffering to an end.
Another of our mascots is Gambatorta, whose name means ‘bowleg’, since he has a leg that was broken and then healed in a very unnatural position. For horse lovers, it will seem strange that a horse can live with a broken leg, since horses in this condition usually die for various reasons, even when receiving medical care.
As if to proclaim the special nature of these horses, to show their strength and stubborn resistance, he has lived in this situation for many years and has survived infection, disease, and even managed to escape an attack by wolves.
More than once we have tried to capture him, but for now he shows no intention of collaborating!
We will monitor his state of health from afar and hope that will have need of us as late as possible, while we smile at the incredulous expressions of people who happen to see him, report him to us and then hear his story.
He and all the other animals we have mentioned have been reported (and at times even helped) by people who happened to be on Calvana and who, through the police and other authorities, have called on us to help them, as volunteers.
And so we have felt the need to take care of the animals, as well as the territory.
One of our objectives is that of developing an emergency protocol for helping animals in trouble, and operational protocols to be followed when emergencies occur, such as drought or excessive scarcity of food sources.
Other measures are aimed at making the territory safe for the horses and all the other wild animals, as well as for hikers and visitors to Calvana.
Soon we will present these measures, one at a time. We take periodic photographic censuses of the horses and have given each of them a Tuscan name.
In Italy, and everywhere else in the world, the chance to see wild horses roaming at large is a very rare occurrence.
At the moment, we are in process of twinning with Aveto, in the Province of Liguria, an organization that, like us, aims to protect its band of free horses, the heritage of all.