National Geographic : 2009 Feb
• INSIDE GEOGRAPHIC PHOTO: LORI FAITH MERRITT, PHOTOGRAPHY BY FAITH ON ASSIGNMENT On the Hoof Beat "There are very few places where you can actually watch wild horses relate to each other," says photographer Melissa Farlow. While working on this month's story about mustangs, Farlow had an opportunity to see how wild horses related to her. On assignment in Lantry, South Dakota, "I was taking pictures at the International Society for the Protection of Mustangs and Burros," says Farlow. "I walked away from my tripod and lens for a minute, and this group of horses went up to check it out. When I ran back to the camera to steady it, they moved in closer and started smelling me. The expression on my face (above) is that I'm just thrilled to be able to experience this, to be able to feel their breath." Farlow wasn't as thrilled when mustangs broke two of her camera traps. "Contractors with the Bureau of Land Management let me put camera traps out where these horses were, with metal boxes around the cameras that are supposed to protect them. Horses ran over the camera probably a dozen times and it was fine, but then one hoof hit just right and cracked its protective case. This hap- pened once, but I still had two cameras left with boxes, so I decided to put another one in the path. Sure enough, they broke another." Mustangs investigated Melissa Farlow's camera--- then Melissa Farlow herself---at a conservation center in South Dakota.