Ten stranded horses in Ireland are breathing a little easier now that they've been discovered--and fed.
The stranded horses were found on an island on Lough Beg, a wide, shallow lake on the border of County Londonderry and County Antrim in Northern Ireland.
It is unknown exactly how the horses ended up on the island, or how long they've been there. One working theory is that the horses crossed on to the island in the fall, via a causeway, during a period of low water levels. But subsequent winter floodwaters running off nearby Lough Neagh raised the water levels again, effectively stranding the horses on the island.
Calls from concerned locals alerted the Community Rescue Service in Portglenone, a civil parish in County Antrim, to the presence of the stranded horses. Volunteers from the rescue service gathered emergency feed and supplies, piled into a boat, and set out to deliver the supplies to the island. It took some searching before the volunteers located the island that the horses were stranded on, as there are multiple islands on the lake.
When the rescue workers arrived on the island, they found 13 horses. Three horses were dead. The remaining 10 horses were friendly and seemed to be in relatively good condition, despite the fact that they were standing in upwards of 10 inches of mud and had no substantial food source.
The feed delivery by rescue workers provided a much-needed, short-term fix. However, the horses need to be moved to more suitable conditions as quickly as possible. No one is sure who owns the horses, but the Mid-Ulster Council is now investigating the case. With any luck, investigators will have the matter resolved sooner rather than later for the welfare of these horses.
Want to know more? Check out BBC's reporting of the story here.
All images via BBC