33 minutes | Dec 7th 2020

Ep 092 Prairie Sky Sanctuary: To Be Friesian or Not To BeFriesian, That Is The Question

We haven’t talked about horses for a while, and they’re definitely one of our favorite creatures, so today we’re off to Wisconsin, to talk about one of the most majestic animals in the equine world:  The Friesian.  Native to Holland and beloved by film producers everywhere for their striking looks, there’s a very long history on these animals, and they have gorgeous movement to boot.We met up with Nicole Porter Salvato and her husband Dan on their beautifully-remote hilltop ranch in western Wisconsin.  Prairie Sky Sanctuary has beautiful trees, mushrooms in the woods, gorgeous pastures filled with butterflies and flowers, yaks, thoroughbreds, and Friesians, of course.  And though the blue above seems to go on forever in the daytime, it’s a dark-sky location that’s hard to beat, for all of you astronomy buffs out there (And they have yak cheese, so we knew we were truly in Wisconsin). In talking to an epigenetics expert (among the other bases of knowledge Nicole has in her very interesting brain), you would think our conversation today would be about the yaks she raises, and the groundbreaking genetic research she is doing (No, Sunny Hill Ranch, today we’re focusing on horses.  Sorry about that.).  Nope!  Those elegant, prancy, high-stepping ebony horses are the thing today.On a related but unrelated note:  As we’ve been binge-watching TV series this year, one of our many topics of conversation with Nicole and Dan left us wondering about a concept from Beforeigners (thank you, HBO).  When does an organism that we artificially bring from one time or place into another something different?  If you bring an Old Norse person (read “Viking”) into Oslo in the current day, is he still a Viking?  Even if he shares the same basic genetic material as what’s there now, are the modern-day newbies something different altogether?  Will they react the same way as the ones on the ground?  And if we apply this question to our obsession with artificial insemination today, are the animals we create in this way still the same animals?  No one knows for sure yet.  But it’s worth a thought or two and a rousing intellectual discussion.  Or twelve, if you were on the mountaintop at Prairie Sky that day.  Sheer bliss. Links:https://www.prairieskysanctuary.org/ https://www.prairieskysanctuary.org/new-page-1 https://www.psr.onl/ https://fhana.com/ https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8332130/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASr0n5LnWnU https://www.cdc.gov/genomics/disease/epigenetics.htm https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valkyrie https://modernnorseheathen.wordpress.com/2017/11/06/what-types-of-horses-did-the-vikings-ride/ https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/08/160808123849.htm https://www.ancient-origins.net/history-ancient-traditions/viking-dogs-followed-their-masters-valhalla-008944 https://skjalden.com/viking-farm-animals/Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/agriCulturePodcast)
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