The inspiration of my children’s books, Pale as the Moon and An Independent Spirit, are the wild horses of North Carolina’s Outer Banks. There are five main locations where the horses live: Corolla, Ocracoke, Cedar Island, Carrot Island, and Shackleford Banks. The wild horses I am most familiar with are the ones managed by the Corolla Wild Horse Fund.
The horses have been designated North Carolina’s Official State Horse. North Carolinians cherish the horses for the part they have played in our heritage. When you think about it, had it not been for horses we would not have gotten very far in exploring and settling the New World. The horse helped us in our work, farming, transporting goods, in war and peace. And it all started with the tough, small, Spanish horses first introduced to the continent by European explorers.
It is a tribute to their toughness that descendents of those first horses still roam freely in parts of the North Carolina Outer Banks. But development and so-called-progress has dealt a hard blow to their survival. Because of the dedication of a few citizens the horses are hanging on, but for how long we don’t know. Its going to take a lot of people working and campaigning for these beautiful animals to survive.
The hardest thing for me to understand is the cruelty of some human beings. Why would anyone run down a foal with a four wheel drive or shoot these horses? If you find that hard to believe go to Corolla Wild horse Fund’s Blog and read the entries. If it doesn’t make you want to cry then I think you have a hard heart. If it does move you to tears then write your law makers and tell them how you feel and beg them to support the legislation that will help us protect our wild horses.