Four generations strong

Luella N. Brien
Thursday, April 15, 2021
Four generations strong
Photo by Tony Manolis
Shawn Traversie, of Eagle Butte, S.D., lands with his face in the dirt at the Real Bird family Buck Out on Saturday. The annual event is a test of unbroken 4- and 5-year-old colts fresh off their winter pasture.

The Real Bird Family’s bucking horses have competed in rodeos across the United States and Canada.

The family has been raising the animals for four generations.

This year, James Real Bird, with the help of his father Kennard and uncles Henry and Jimmy Real Bird, organized the family' annual Buck Out on Saturday.

Fresh 4- and 5-year-old colts are gathered from their winter pasture before the grass turns green and are put to the test.

The family tested 30 colts with 14 riders over five hours.

The event usually attracts a handful of local riders, mostly Real Bird cousins and nephews, but this year, James Real Bird said, riders came from as far as Eagle Butte, South Dakota and Casper, Wyoming.

Kennard Real Bird said the family purposefully brings the colts out before grazing them on the spring grass or giving them supplemental feed to see what kind of athleticism the animal possesses.

"Raising bucking horses is sublime," he said. "I love horses that are rank, powerful and athletic."

For more action from the Real Bird Family Buck Out see Ridin' Rank