Natural Predators Of Wild Horses
The largest predators of wild horses are human beings who shoot, kill or catch them whenever the horses are found on land used for agriculture. These horses used to be slaughtered or even now are sometimes sent to other areas for that purpose. Some horses may be sold as riding horses to be broken. There are plenty of “mustang challenges” where cowboys compete to see who can break a mustang the quickest. Human beings take these horses and tame them or sell them to be used in doing races. This poses a big challenge since humans make the species extinct.
Additionally, there is a need to check out for wolves, cougars, and bears. Though a single cougar may not take down a mature horse on its own, as the mustangs get older or sick or lame, they become fair game. Foals, a name used to represent young ones of a horse, are hunted regularly, and even if they’ve learned to be up or able to move away within a short period, they can still end up as a meal for a hungry cougar. Packs of cougars can then take down a mature horse but rarely do as a wild horse is very fast or, if forced to fight, has a kick that can kill a predator. Their teeth are nothing to ignore either since they’re strong with a painful bite.
Grizzlies can feed on horses, but these bears much prefer smaller tasks when hunting. This is because it takes much effort to get their heavy bodies moving, and normally, they don’t prefer going after a healthy horse. While grizzlies can move faster than a horse over small distances, horses feeding in a group having a head start would easily run away. They pose a danger to helpless, tied domestic horses and cattle since they can easily outshine them. A grizzly is not a big predator since it only waits for a single opportunity when a horse is helpless to feed on it.
Coyotes are smaller in size when compared to wolves. A coyote mainly preys on a squirrel, rabbit, and other small animals. Coyotes are intelligent hunters who move in groups when hunting and don’t start a fight that they may lose. For the coyote family, horses are huge and threaten a coyote’s health for them to bother. However, whenever hunting in a pack, coyotes can kill a young horse then feed on it when hungry. This makes them predators because coyotes occasionally feed on young horses, which are left to wander alone.
On given occasions, some feral dogs will form united fronts to hunt. While most trouble is caused for cattle or other domestic livestock, they are bold and more aggressive than other animals. These dogs may chase a mature wild horse herd, which accidentally leads to their death. Generally, horses have excellent eyesight that enables them to see their enemy from far. Wild horses possess eyes situated on the sides of the head, giving them a wider view of the land for any coming predictors.