Congrats on the DS nuptials, sp! I dunno.... some people will do anything to have an excuse to party... My guess is going to "Grandma's" for pony rides is not in the too distant future now.
Well... I finally turned Jack out with Jewel & Al last night. I figured after 2 months of sharing a round bale at the fence line tolerance levels had plateaued. I initiated the merger by temporarily opening the front yard (with REAL grass!) to all three, reckoning the buffet would distract them from realizing there was no longer a fence separating them. It worked for about 45 minutes while I wandered around the yard with them, strategically putting myself between Al and Jack like a playground monitor. Then Al purposely meandered closer to Jack and started chasing him down again. I managed to break it up with a loud and stern "ALBERT!!", after which he would break away, prancing in a wide circle with tail flagging. Then all would be good for about 15 minutes before a repeat performance. I put them all back in a shared paddock about sunset to let them sort out their hierarchy as long as there was no blood letting going on.
Poor Jack kept giving me bewildered looks, like "What did I do to deserve this? I LIKED having my own paddock." Yeah. Well... the only area conducive to sharing a bale through the fence has become such a pit of muck and mire I can no longer get the truck to it without sinking to the axles. A new location means full sharing in cohabitation, even if I have to put them up in shifts throughout the day and night. I didn't hear any ruckus overnight. But this morning Jack was hiding in a thicket area at the end of the creek. Now Al and Jewel are waiting for breakfast at the back fence and Jack is at the far end of the paddock watching them.
It appears AL is exhibiting stallion behavior, protecting "his" mare. I've decided to put Jewel up for a day and just leave the boys out together and see what happens. I suspect Al will hang around the stall near Jewel. It's always interesting to watch these animals interact and try to get inside their heads. ~FH
UPDATE- New round bale is placed and I only had to step in and "eyeball" Al one time after an initial chasing Jack episode. Once I stood at the RB myself, Jack came in behind and started eating while Al and Jewel stayed on the other side of the bale. I left them to their own devices for about 15 minutes and Jewel eventually pushed Jack off but without any baring of teeth. It looks like the war is not yet over but at least is down to just occasional skirmishes.
I'm off to eBay in search of a blue UN Peacekeeper's helmet.