Kate Bell Relishing Time Foaling Mares at Evergreen Stud

My placement at Evergreen Stud has been amazing and such an eye-opener, with so many different opportunities offered. I started my placement with the pre-trainers where my duties included strapping for riders, providing required treatment to horses, assisting with vet checks, and feed runs for horses in work and horses out spelling.

During this time, I also had the opportunity to prep horses ready for the track and take horses to and from spelling paddocks. I also worked with weanling assisting in their preparation for the sales next year. 

My recent move on the property has brought me to the breeding side of the farm, where I have developed my skills while becoming more hands-on with mares in foal and dry mares. This has aided my ability for foaling down and getting mares ready for service later in the season. The change has also given me more opportunity to work with weanlings on a more regular basis.

My duties with weanlings are to assist them in adjusting to people by grooming, walking them around in the box, and handling them whilst cleaning out their boxes. After a few weeks, I was asked if I would be interested in getting involved in night watch. I leapt at the chance to test myself a little more and gain further experience in this field. I was very nervous when it came to my first night shift, as Neil (the manager) kept saying, it ‘was either going to be that night or the following night for the stud’s first foal’. I was walking around every hour checking the mares, and then reporting back to the manager when he checks in halfway through the shift.

That night not much was reported, so I knew deep down that it was going to be my next shift. When the next shift came, we were smack bang on the dot with the foaling, in the early hours of the morning, I was able to help welcome the first foal of the season to a somewhat cold and frosty morning.

I honestly could not explain in words the excitement and emotion that I felt at that moment and the happiness when the little fella took his first steps. That will be a moment I will never forget. I am so glad that I was given this opportunity and I cannot thank Evergreen Stud for these experiences, allowing me to grow and learn so much more. My dream wouldn’t have been possible without the ongoing support of Lindy and the Explorer Program, because, I know I wasn’t the easiest Cadet, but I really do appreciate all the support and guidance that the other Cadets and I have been given!