Mustangs | Spirit of the Shrinking West, National Geographic Magazine: Fight Or Flight Instinct In Steens Mountain Horses

Three horses on a hill react by running and looking alert.

Horses are prey animals with a flight or fight instinct, although their first response is often to flee from predators. As these three stallions travelling across sagebrush high plains in Oregon crest a hill, one is startled by a noise. He sounds the alarm for danger, and begins to run. The middle horse begins to follow and gallop to safety, and the third alertly looks back to the perceived danger. Man is the greatest predator of horses, but in Steens Mountain the mountain lion is also a threat.

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