The donkey foals sleep a lot, like all babies, and for the past three months it has been my regular habit to sit down in the dust and have a quiet time with the foals when they are resting. Since I do nearly all the photography myself for this blog, it has been difficult until now to get some shots of me sitting with the foals. At last, an opportunity arose while I had family staying recently and the shots appearing here were taken by my daughter Alys. Click on photos for full-size
Sitting down with Morris attracts the attention of his mother Rubi who comes over to join in. She stands over me and rubs her chin on my head, then sways from side to side over her foal and I, rubbing against my shoulder. This is quite an established pattern of behaviour but this is the first opportunity to catch it on camera.
I move over to sit with Aitana and she is really sleepy and soppy, making snoring noises and grunting occasionally when I rub between her ears. Unlike the situation with Rubi and her foal, Aitana’s mother Matilde is not interested in joining us but keeps her distance.
Finally, having observed me with the other donkeys and not wanting to miss out on the display of affection, Matilde came over to where I was sitting and licked my face. This was a very rare occurence. (Was it just for the camera?) It was very brief: almost a gesture! Then she walked off.