Northern Outer Banks wild horse dies after running into barbed-wire fence

Joaquin suffered severe injuries running into a barbed wire fence. [Photo courtesy CWHF]

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund this morning announced another death among the northern Outer Banks’ wild mustang herd — a beloved stallion named Joaquin.

The young horse was severely injured this week when he attempted to go through a barbed wire fence on U.S. Fish and Wildlife service property, the CWHF said in a Facebook post.

“A good Samaritan spotted him Thursday afternoon and immediately called us,” the fund said. “Upon closer inspection of his injuries, it was determined by our vet that his leg was beyond repair and the most humane course of action would be euthanasia.”

Joaquin’s death is the third this year in the herd of about 100 Spanish colonial mustangs who roam the northern beaches in Currituck County. In July, the mother of the second foal born this year was killed after apparently running head-first into unmarked guy-wire. And in June, a horse removed from the beach for a devastating shoulder injury had to be euthanized.

The CWHF manages the herd of about 100 wild mustangs roaming the four-wheel-drive beaches and a rescue farm of about 17 horses.

“We have feared this scenario since the barbed wire was installed several years ago,” the CWHF said of Joaquin’s accident. “USFWS has been very sympathetic and responsive since the accident occurred and we hope that we’re able to come up with a replacement for the barbed wire that serves their purposes without endangering the horses.”

The group said meetings are being set up with fish and wildlife officials “and we are optimistic for a positive outcome.”

Joaquin was well-known and loved in Swan beach “and our hearts go out to everyone who will grieve his passing,” the fund said.

He was four years old; “a lovely young Banker with a bright future as a harem stallion.

“His loss is a major blow to the herd and will have an impact for generations to come. And we will certainly miss seeing him regularly. Rest free, Joaquin.”

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Kari Pugh is digital director for, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and News Talk 92.3 WZPR. Reach her at