Cross-posted from Elko Daily Free Press
Written by ADELLA HARDING
ELKO —The U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s Elko and Ely offices have jointly issued a record of decision approving a gathering of roughly 1,726 wild horses beginning in July in herd management areas in Elko and White Pine counties.
The Wells Field Office of the Elko BLM and the Egan Field Office approved the gathering for the Triple B, Maverick-Medicine and Antelope Valley Herd Management Areas and the Cherry Springs Wild Horse Territory roughly 30 miles northwest of Ely and 70 miles southeast of Elko.
While the gathering is planned for July, the BLM will keep abreast of what is happening with a virus that threatens domestic horses in the West.
“Regarding equine herpes virus-1, the BLM will follow all state regulations and take any and all precautions necessary,” said Chris Hanefeld, public affairs specialist for the Ely BLM District. (emphasis added)
The BLM reported the agency estimates the population in the Triple B HMA will top 1,460 wild horses by July, including foals, while the BLM’s appropriate management level for the HMA is 250 to 518 horses.
The BLM also stated there are 636 wild horses in the Maverick-Medicine HMA, where the appropriate level is 166 to 276 wild horses and 28 wild horses in the portion of the Antelope Valley HMA west of U.S. Highway 93, where the level should be 16-27 wild horses.
There are 74 wild horses in the Cherry Springs territory, where the appropriate level is 40-68 wild horses, according to the BLM.
If more than 1,726 wild horses are gathered from the combined HMAs, the BLM stated that selective removal criteria would be used to return horses to the range, and the agency would conduct fertility control measures on mares and/or adjust the sex ratios of the gathered animals to be returned to the HMA.
The ratio would be 60 percent male to 40 percent female, the BLM reported.
Plans call for the gathered animals to be transported to the Palomino Valley Center near Reno, where they will be prepared for the BLM adoption program. Continue reading >>