Saturday, December 2, 2023

BLM Announces More Than 8,000 Wild Horses and Burros Found New Homes in Fiscal Year 2023 - Full Article

Published: Saturday, 25 November 2023

November 25, 2023 - WASHINGTON, D.C. — As part of the Bureau of Land Management’s efforts to manage and protect wild horses and burros on public lands, the agency and its partners helped place 8,045 wild horses and burros into new homes in Fiscal Year 2023, saving approximately $181 million in taxpayer money.

“Giving a good forever home to a wild horse or burro is not only a rewarding experience, but it helps support our efforts to keep the wild herds and their habitat healthy on public lands,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. “I am incredibly grateful and humbled by those who choose to adopt a wild horse or burro.”

Of the wild horses and burros placed into new homes, 6,220 animals were adopted, 1,798 were sold and 27 were transferred to other government agencies. This is the second-highest number of animals placed into new homes in over 25 years...

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Friday, November 10, 2023

Ranchers sue BLM over lack of wild horse gathers in central Nevada

TheNevadaIndepentent - Full Article

The BLM did not roundup horses in parts of central Nevada this year, citing “funding limitations and competing national priorities” and lack of corral space.

Amy Alonzo
October 20th, 2023

Claiming the federal government violated its own provisions on how to manage wild horses and burros, two Nevada ranches are suing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) over its failure to remove an excess of wild horses from central Nevada.

Colvin & Son LLC and Stone Cabin Ranch LLC are suing the Bureau of Land Management in federal court for what they allege is the agency’s failure to comply with the Wild and Free Roaming Horses and Burro Act of 1971. The act requires the BLM to manage, protect and control wild horse and burro populations on public land where they existed when the law was passed while maintaining ecological balance between the horses, burros and other wildlife.

The ranches are seeking removal of hundreds of horses from the Stone Cabin and Saulsbury herd management areas outside Tonopah. Excessive wild horses in the area negatively affect wildlife and grazing, according to the suit...

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Wednesday, October 18, 2023

‘Year of the Mustang’: One man’s mission to remind us of the plight — and power — of the wild horse - Full Story and video

A 23-year-old Utah man embarks on 7,000-mile, 30-state journey to raise awareness of the mustang crisis and urge Americans to consider adopting one of their own

By Katie McKellar
Oct 17, 2023,

Six-year-old Denver’s ears flicked back and forth and his dark, shiny coat rippled with tension each time Jake Harvath bumped a heavy leather pack against his sides.

Jake was gently testing his youngest mustang’s memory of what it was like for a 65-pound pack to hang against his rib cage. At first, Denver flinched each time his human partner heaved the bag up, then down, up, then down. He stood still, eying Jake with more trust than uncertainty until he no longer quivered. Eventually, Jake clipped two of those packs to Denver’s saddle, one on each side.

Now to test him in movement. Denver trotted steadily around Jake until the packs bouncing on his back spurred his instincts to take over and his legs lurched out from beneath him in fear. He fought to break out into a gallop, but Jake firmly jerked the mustang’s haltered head in to keep him under control in a tight circle.

“It’s kind of like a high-fiber breakfast,” said Jake’s dad, Daniel, as he watched his son work Denver from behind the tall round pen fences at his home training facility, Sage Creek Equestrian, near Heber City, Utah.

“It’s not always easy to watch, but it’s really good for Denver. In the long run, it will help him feel calm and at peace. A lot less fear,” Daniel Harvath said. “These creatures, being herd animals, their biggest challenge is fear. At the core, that’s all Jake is trying to teach them, to work through fear.”

Jake is going to need Denver and his two other mustangs to overcome a daunting challenge of his own — a more than ambitious solo pack trip to crisscross America that he’s been planning since he was a teenager...

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Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Idaho Wild Horse Capture Operation is Sparking Controversy - Full Article

By: Cooper McCauley
Posted at 4:29 PM, Sep 10, 2023
and last updated 8:28 AM, Sep 11, 2023

In the Owyhee Mountains, dozens of wild horses enjoy a hundred thousand acres of public land. As part of an effort to manage their population, the Bureau of Land Management launched a roundup in the Black Mountain Herd Management Area.

The roundup was launched on September 6th, with BLM capturing 24 of the 220 wild horses they aim to gather. Once captured, BLM will treat 38 wild mares with a fertility suppression vaccine called GonaCon Equine to curb the growth of the wild horse population.

The roundup has continued steadily in the days following its kickoff, but not without sparking some controversy in the community. Wild Horse Education (WHE) is a small volunteer group that advocates for change in the management of wild horses on public land. The organization filed an Appeal and Stay Petition to halt the operation due to their concerns with the treatment of the horses being captured, and argues on a post on their website that the BLM "rushed to begin before the courts filed a ruling..."

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Monday, June 26, 2023

Hundreds Of ‘Stray’ Horses Rile Up Ranchers In Southwest Wyoming - Full Article

Hundreds of stray horses are causing problems In southwestern Wyoming, and nobody’s sure what to do about them.

Mark Heinz
June 23, 2023

Hundreds of horses that nobody claims are running loose in southwest Wyoming, and their fate seems uncertain.

Nobody even seems to know how many there are, but estimates for this rogue herd run as high as 800.

Rancher Vance Broadbent said it’s frustrating, because he’s had some of those horses on grazing allotments he leases from the Bureau of Land Management. But the horses apparently don’t count as mustangs, or wild horses, so the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) isn’t claiming responsibility for them.

“We’re still having conversations with the BLM, as far as what can or can’t be done,” Broadbent – who ranches in Sweetwater and Uinta counties – told Cowboy State Daily...

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Monday, June 19, 2023

Contrary To What BLM Reports, Horse Advocates Say Winterkill Hit Wyoming Mustangs Hard - Full Article

The BLM’s estimates of a thriving Wyoming’s mustang population are off, some wild horse advocates say, and that winterkill hit mustangs hard in some areas.

Mark Heinz
June 16, 2023

Wyoming’s mustangs suffered mass die-offs this winter, and there are probably about only half as many left as the Bureau of Land Management estimates, wild horse advocates tell Cowboy State Daily.

A BLM spokesman said the agency is double-checking its mustang population estimates.

Death On The Range

“I spent the first half of May documenting death and counting live horses,” Angelique Rea of Thermopolis, who has monitored and photographed mustangs for years, told Cowboy State Daily.

Chad and Lynn Hanson of Casper, founders of the Wyoming Mustang Institute, said they made a grim discovery when they checked on mustang herds this spring.

“We found the dead horses in Stewart Creek along (U.S. Highway) 287 south of Bairoil, and along Mineral X and Crooks Gap Road,” Chad Hanson told Cowboy State Daily...

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Wyoming: Winterkill Wiped Out Deer & Antelope Herds, But Wild Horse Population Is Exploding - Full Article

There are more than twice as many mustangs in Wyoming as there should be, according to the Bureau of Land Management, and the past harsh winter that decimated some antelope and deer herds didn’t do much to reduce their numbers.

Mark Heinz
June 14, 2023

Wyoming’s mustangs seem to have pulled though this past harsh winter well — maybe too well. There are more than twice as many on the range as the state is supposed to have, says a Bureau of Land Management official.

“We are not seeing the same level of mortality (among mustangs) that other ungulates are seeing,” according to preliminary estimates of the winter death toll, said Kris Kirby, the associate state director of the BLM’s Wyoming headquarters.

In parts of Wyoming, winterkill decimated mule deer and antelope herds.

Meanwhile, there are an estimated 8,181 mustangs roaming across roughly 5 million acres in 16 herd management areas that the BLM oversees in Wyoming, she said. The agency’s target population is 3,725 horses...

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Sunday, May 28, 2023

BLM seeks public comment on proposed wild horse gathers in Owyhee County, Idaho - Full Article

By News Team
Published May 15, 2023

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI) – To help healthy wild horse herds continue to thrive on healthy rangelands, the Bureau of Land Management Owyhee Field Office is seeking public comment on the Owyhee Field Office Herd Management Area Management Plan Environmental Assessment for the Black Mountain, Hardtrigger and Sands Basin Herd Management Areas.

The preliminary 10-year environmental assessment addresses potential environmental consequences associated with excess wild horses as well as fertility control applications to help slow future population growth. The environmental assessment is available for comment May 15 to June 13, 2023.

“We are deeply committed to maintaining healthy wild horse herds on Idaho’s public rangelands in the Owyhee Field Office,” BLM Owyhee Field Manager (acting) Ammon Wilhelm said. “As wild horse populations can double in size every four years, the alternatives identified in the draft environmental assessment provide a wide range of options to maintain the appropriate number of wild horses on healthy public rangelands. These options also took into consideration the comments we received from scoping last year...”

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Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Dennis Sun: The Wild Horses Battle Goes On And On - Full Article

Columnist Dennis Sun writes, "Even with aggressive roundups, there are still approximately 50,000 horses above the maximum appropriate management level."

Dennis Sun
May 21, 2023

The issue of wild horses just goes on and on. Literally from the day the Wild and Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act of 1971 was passed placing management under the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), finger pointing, discussions and lawsuits have been the normal.

At the time, BLM didn’t want to be managers of horses and burros – they are a land management agency – but Congress didn’t know who else to hand the problem over to. So, the BLM established herd management areas (HMA) and began allowing a specified amount of horses in each HMA.

Once they reached this number objective, the horses were rounded up and placed in feedlots or holding pens. However, this got so expensive, the BLM started leasing deeded land to place horses on.

Wild horse numbers need controlled because they have a comparatively large impact on the range.

Over the years, across all of the HMAs, horse numbers have exploded, and the BLM doesn’t know what to do with them...

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Sunday, February 12, 2023

Legislator Says Horse Slaughter ‘Worked Well’ Before, Could Be Answer To Wyoming’s Wild Horse Problem - Full Article

Published on February 6, 2023
By Mark Heinz, Outdoors Reporter

Reopening American horse slaughter plants would be a vital step toward managing Wyoming’s mustang herds, says a Wyoming state lawmaker.

“The next thing that’s really hampering this whole effort (toward mustang management) is the fact that these horses cannot be slaughtered for meat,” said Rep. John Winter, R-Thermopolis. “We used to have a slaughter plant in North Platte, Nebraska, and it worked very well.”

Winter made the remarks during House floor discussion of a bill he sponsored, House Joint Resolution 3. It calls upon Congress to revise management of wild horses and burros, and reopen horse slaughterhouses in the United States.

It passed the House on Monday with nobody speaking against it...

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Even the giant new Wild Horse Refuge can’t catch up to the mustang surplus

Beth Clifton photo - Full Article

February 9, 2023
By Merritt Clifton

Sanctuaries & anti-slaughter legislation address the wrong end of the problem

DENVER, Colorado––Wild horse advocates rejoiced on February 8, 2023 when the $29-million-a-year Wild Animal Sanctuary announced the purchase of 22,450 acres near Craig in northwest Colorado, to become The Wild Horse Refuge.

“Spanning 29 square miles, a landmass larger than Manhattan, the refuge will serve to rescue and protect hundreds of wild horses,” enthused Alexander Kirk for 9News in Denver.

“The Wild Animal Sanctuary said the refuge is being created in response to wild horse round-ups conducted in 2021 and 2022 by the Bureau of Land Management at Colorado’s Sand Wash Basin and Piceance-East Douglas Herd Management Areas,” Kirk continued...

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Monday, January 23, 2023

Are there enough wild horses to bring back equine slaughter for human food? - Full Article

By Dan Flynn on January 20, 2023

A lengthy joint resolution in the Wyoming House calls upon Congress to bring back equine slaughter and processing for markets outside the United States. Wyoming is offering the resolution as a “best management practice” for all those wild mustangs that roam and breed with little effective management throughout the Cowboy State.

By offering the solution to Wyoming’s wild mustang problem, the usual sides are lining up. Wyoming’s Park County Commissioner Lee Livingston sees equine slaughter as “practical and humane.” Grace Kuhn, speaking for the American Wild Horse Campaign, said it’s “impractical and inhumane.”

The slaughter of horses for human food — widely practiced in other parts of the world — ended in the United States in 2007 when Congress prohibited the expenditure of public funds for equine inspections without which its sale for human food is prohibited...

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Wild Horses Find Sanctuary at Skydog Ranch in Oregon - Full Article Over 300 wild horses and 50 burros saved after their capture now call 9,000 acres of breathtaking, rugged l...