BLM destroys wild horse herd as advocates sit at Advisory Board Mtg (US)

BLM’s Don Glenn Openly Lies to Press and Advocates While Wild Horses are Rounded Up


Once free, their beautiful lives ruined - Palomino Valley 12/11/09 - Photo by K. McCovey

Following the yet-unsolved shooting death of 6 federally-protected mustangs, more of America’s mustangs are removed; at least one mare has died to date.

The discovery of shooting deaths of six wild horses on the California-Nevada border has led to the exposure of an apparently clandestine BLM roundup of over 200 horses. The roundup of the Buckhorn Wild Horses was scheduled to begin in August 2010. However, in a surprise move by the Surprise BLM field office in Cedarville, CA, the roundup took place November 30-December 10th.

The horses were run into traps in freezing conditions with rain and snow and overnight lows dipping below 0ºF. BLM spokesman Jeff Fontana reported that 217 were removed, leaving 59 on the range. This roundup was originally planned for a removal of 536 horses to get down to a BLM-approved level of just 85 horses or less.

No one was there observe because no one was told this roundup had been moved up 9 months until after the fact. How many horses were injured, how many were killed? How exactly was the roundup conducted? The truth is, any member of the public is seriously remiss in trusting this agency. Only the most dedicated members of the public would even be able and willing to drive in this weather to observe such a roundup.

Mare and Foal pen at Palomino Vally holdy facility - 12/11/09 - Photo by K. McCovey

One mare has died after being crushed by a metal panel, according to BLM and foals appear to be in poor condition in the BLM Palomino Valley holding pens following the ordeal and another winter storm. The horses have no shelter and the windbreaks are not up. BLM has zeroed out wild horses for just that reason in the past.

The change to conduct this roundup in winter was made without notification to the BLM’s own press agents, the media or the public. The requisite 30-day comment period was conducted in August of 2009 on a suspect recycled 2007 Environmental Assessment (EA) that was reused in August 2009 to allow for a roundup in this area. When advocates learned that this roundup was taking place nine months ahead of schedule, the Surprise Field Office had no record of decision (ROD) or final EA posted on their website to authorize this roundup. On Friday, following inquiries from the public, an unsigned August ROD was posted on the BLM site.

While BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program Chief, Don Glenn, was telling the advocates in attendance at a National BLM Advisory Board meeting that they were welcome to observe any BLM roundup (which came as news to the many people there who had repeatedly been denied access to view roundups this year and in the past) roundup crews were in process of “gathering” horses. Mr. Glenn’s invitation is clearly hampered by not knowing when and where roundups will take place. To date an updated roundup schedule has still not been posted on the National BLM website.

Another herd destroyed by the BLM - Merry Christmas - Photo by K. McCovey

Pressure is growing on the BLM as a unified moratorium letter signed by over 190 organizations, including the Cloud Foundation, the Equine Welfare Alliance and In Defense of Animals as well as noted scientists, and celebrities such as Sheryl Crow, Lily Tomlin, Viggo Mortenson, Ed Harris, Bill Maher and more. This call is supported by signatures of over 7,000 individuals. (add your name here!)

Ginger Kathrens of the Cloud Foundation, spoke with the Surprise field office in early December and learned that the Massacre Lakes roundup (scheduled to being December 7th) had been delayed until February. The BLM failed to inform Ms. Kathrens at that time that another roundup had been substituted in its place.

Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is moving forward with roundups of America’s wild horses and burros and carrying on with operations through the dead of winter in California, Oregon and Nevada. According to the most recent Roundup Schedule (12/4/09) the BLM plans to remove 7,163 wild horses and burros this winter, and another 4,395 in the summer of 2010. This roundup schedule was given to Advisory Board members on 12/7 but not to the Cloud Foundation until 12/10/09 upon request.

The notorious KD Livestock crews moves next to southeast Oregon where they are scheduled to remove over 200 horses in what could be equally dangerous winter conditions. BLM Chief Don Glenn invites the world to watch.

The BLM is the bull in the china shop of America’s public western wildlands. Their mismanagement is nearly as legendary as the mustangs themselves. Keep up the call for a moratorium on roundups!

Blue Arrow Sign the petition and send your comments to President Obama and your representatives here.

thin gray line

Related Reading:

— Read AP article by Martin Griffith 12-12-09 article on the clandestine Buckhorn Roundup of 217 horses (San Francisco Chronicle,

— Read AP article on shooting deaths of 6 wild horses 12-10-09

— Read Virginia City News “No Merry Christmas for 8 Wild Horses

15 thoughts on “BLM destroys wild horse herd as advocates sit at Advisory Board Mtg (US)”

  1. I for one am sick and tired for the unanswered pleas from all of the Government officials, I have written called email thousands of times, to no avail. The BLM is the worst, all you can get there is a form letter returned to you answering nothing !!! I would like to know , who is directly responsible for the enforcing of the R.O.A.M. Act??? That is the problem ……………… Do they write these things for nothing !!!! If no one is responsible for enforcement ………..What is the sense………………I have placed many calls to the BLM , no one there is remotely aware of what they are doing ????? Their answers are deceit and lies……… Who can stop this insanity…………………………..??????? Our Beautiful Wild Mustangs are being killed, terrorized, for what???? There is no reason for this direct assault on Our Majestic Icons and is totally without any foundation….. The BLM is in direct defiance of the R.O.A.M Act………. Without Wild Mustangs America is nothing and stands for nothing, America was not founded on lies and deception it was founded on truth and Justice , where is the truth and the justice for Our Mustangs, if not for horses there would be no West, their power plowed our fields , delivered our Mail , Powered our Stagecoaches, even still today they are serviceing in wars, they lie on the battlefield right next to our loved ones, there freedom is well deserved in every area….. Have you ever witnessed and child , that has no emotion, put up on the back of a horse????? A child who was thought not to have any abilities , because of a birth afliction, who cannot even smile , smiles ?????? When nothing else could help, our troubled youth find themselves when caring for a horse!!! Our Wild Mustangs are the only symbol of Americas Power, Strength , and most of Our Freedom…………..We cannot sit idlelly by and watch there total destruction………………By the BLM>


    1. Arlene, the ROAM Act has not been passed yet. It allows sanctuaries and may be where Salazar got his idea to move wild horses to the Midwest and East. I think you have it confused with the Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act of 1971 which is being broken. Otherwise all of your comments are just terrific.


  2. I was at this meeting and Don Glenn
    could not answer one question.

    He dances around like a child in need of the bathroom.

    the BLM need to go thats all there is, but Salazar and Obama
    are right in there with them…
    This is totally corrupt, illegal, and sick.

    Our Senator Feinstein is chair of the committee that funds the BLM,
    I hope she joins the unemployment line along with Don Glenn very soon.


  3. BLM is thumbing their nose not just at us wild horse advocates but at the President, also. If Obama belongs to DOI/BLM he will ignore the public again. If he wants this to settle down he had better stop BLM activity and let us change all we can to manage the wild ones. We are watching BLM wipe them out as if they were the 7th Cavalry and theses were Cheyenne ponies back in the 1880s. Mar


  4. Unfortunately, this is how the BLm in NV operates and has been doing it for years and getting away with it! It’s time they answer to the law! There is a good point in this article…while the advisory board was blabby away, there was a round up going on. I can bet you dollars for donuts they were laughing at us, knowing it was going on all the while diverting our attention and energy. I think it’s time we boycott that group. They have no business being on an Advisory committee for horses. Not a single one except maybe the vet knows squat about wild horses. The only reason they are there is to promote the propaganda the BLM spews, and to protect their own special interests like hunting big horn sheep!

    I for one am so sick and tired of government running the citizens, the environment and wild life/wild ones over with a mac truck I could spit! For many years we had no way to network to other sources and people that have resources, connections etc, to get things done. The internet has changed all of that. We can now send time sensitive information to each other and those that do have resources. I’m really hoping the IDA lawsuit has some bite to it!

    If anyone has a connection to Hillary or Bill Clinton, the Clinton administration was the only one in the last 30 years to put a 3 year moritorum on round ups. If you or someone you know has an in at the Clinton camp, please by all means make your voice heard. I believe there is power and allies there to get a moritorum.


  5. Sorry, we weren’t clear. It is clearly illegal what they are doing. What we are wondering is this. Isn’t it against the humane laws of the states of California and Nevada to expose mares and foals in freezing cold temperatures to the point of death? Does it matter that these bureaucratic assassins are government employees conducting work on its behalf? It would be a means of getting these mares and foals into shelters and out of the hands of the BLM where they will surely be murdered. Another bright and shiny holiday for horse advocates I see. Do we never get a moment’s rest?

    Ms Schneider, we will certainly look into your candidacy.


  6. What they are doing IS against the law…the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horses and Burros Act. They already can’t care for the horses and burros they have. They should be forbidden from removing any others and should have to release the others back into the wild. The law needs to be changed to disallow ANY leasing to cattle, sheep or other grazing animal ranchers. That is what we need done.

    I’m running for Congress in Arizona and promise you that I will introduce legislation asking for just those changes if elected. If you want to support me, please go to (rebecca in 2010 dot com). We need animal advocates in Congress instead of unfeeling bureaucrats and lifelong politicians who could care less.


  7. “They [wild horses and burros] belong to all the American people. The sprit which kept them alive and free against almost insurmountable odds typifies the national spirit which led to the growth of our Nation. They are living symbols of the rugged independence and tireless energy of our pioneer heritage…

    The committee wishes to emphasize that the management of the wild free-roaming horses and burros be kept to a minimum both from the aspect of reducing costs of such a program as well as to deter the possibility of “zoolike” developments. An intensive management program of breeding, branding, and physical care would destroy the very concept that this legislation seeks to preserve. … leaving the animals alone to fend for themselves and placing primary emphasis on protecting the animals from continued slaughter and harassment by man.”

    — Senate Report (Interior and Insular Affairs Committee), June 25, 1971


  8. We thought we couldn’t be any more outraged. Yet the BLM, with their unscrupulous and underhanded tactics, continue to raise the bar on sheer gall and cruelty. We applaud the lawsuit, of course. We are now wondering if BLM employees, conducting these raids on our public lands to capture and kill our wild horses & burros, can not be prosecuted criminally. What they are doing has to be against some law, somewhere.


  9. The BLM has no compassion and doesn’t care how many deaths snd injuries result from these cruel and unnecessary roundups. Are they doing the other roundups in the winter because they know the public can’t attend ? It appears so. What other underhanded deals will they pull next?


  10. This is an outrage. I did call Obama and left a message. I have signed petitions, but sadly horses are still dying in unforgivable numbers and manner. I am heartsick that no one in Washington seems to be listening so what does it take to stop this slaughter?


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