National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board to meet Oct 9-10

October 9-11 meeting will be livestreamed at http://www.blm.gov/live

Wild horses Utah. AWHPC image. Photographer not cited.
Wild horses Utah. AWHPC image. Photographer not cited.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board will meet October 9-11, 2018, in Salt Lake City, Utah, to discuss the pressing challenges of wild horse and burro management.  This includes the backlog of unadopted and unsold animals in BLM facilities and the adverse effects overpopulation is having on public lands.  The meeting will be live-streamed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Time on Wednesday and Thursday, at http://www.blm.gov/live. The BLM will also host a field trip for the Advisory Board to one of the local wild horse herd management areas on Tuesday, October 9.

“The Advisory Board is comprised of stakeholders who bring diverse backgrounds, experiences, and expertise to the table as they take on some of the difficult issues facing the program,” said BLM Deputy Director Brian Steed.  “I look forward to hearing their ideas and recommendations for finding a path to long-term sustainable populations on the range through humane management practices.”

As of May 22, 2018, the BLM estimated public rangelands were home to nearly 82,000 wild horses and burros in 10 Western states – the largest population estimate since the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act was passed – and more than three times the number the habitat can sustainably support in conjunction with other authorized land uses.  At the same time, the BLM continues to care for approximately 45,000 unadopted and unsold excess animals in its off-range corrals and pastures, costing taxpayers $50 million annually – nearly two-thirds of the Wild Horse and Burro Program annual budget.

The agenda of the upcoming meeting can be found in the September 5, 2018, Federal Register at https://go.usa.gov/xPcdQ. The final meeting agenda will be posted on the BLM website at BLM.gov/WHB prior to the meeting. The meeting will be held at the Courtyard Marriott Salt Lake City Downtown located at 345 West 100 South, Salt Lake City, Utah, 84101.  The hotel’s website address is https://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/slccd-courtyard-salt-lake-city-do… the phone number is (385) 290-6500.

The public may address the Advisory Board on Thursday, October 11 from 2 to 4:30 p.m. Mountain Time.  Individuals who want to make a comment should register in person with the BLM prior to 1:45 p.m. local time, on that same day at the meeting site.  Depending on the number of speakers, the Board may limit the length of comments, which has been set at about three minutes per person during previous meetings.

Speakers should submit a written copy of their comment to the BLM at the addresses below or bring a copy to the meeting.  There will be a webcam present during the entire meeting and individual comments will be recorded.  Those who would like to comment but are unable to attend may submit a written statement by October 2 to: U.S. Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, National Wild Horse and Burro Program, WO-260, Attention: Advisory Board, 20 M St. SE, Room 2134, Washington, D.C., 20003.  Comments may also be e-mailed by October 2 to the BLM at whbadvisoryboard@blm.gov.  Please include “Advisory Board Comment” in the subject line of the e-mail.

The Advisory Board is comprised of individuals representing a diverse range of stakeholders and interests. The Board provides advice and recommendations to the BLM as it carries out its responsibilities under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.  The law mandates the protection and management of these free-roaming animals in a manner that ensures healthy herds at levels consistent with the land’s capacity to sustainably support them as part of BLM’s multiple-use mission. Because wild horses and burros have no predators capable of naturally controlling population growth, if left unmanaged herds can grow quickly and overcome their habitat’s ability to support them.

For additional information regarding the meeting or to register to attend the October 9 HMA tour, please contact Dorothea Boothe, Acting Wild Horse and Burro Program Coordinator, at (202) 912-7654 or at dboothe@blm.gov.  Individuals who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may reach Ms. Boothe during normal business hours by calling the Federal Information Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339.

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Source: BLM Press Release »

Note: If you have anything to say to the BLM about the management of America’s wild horses and burros, the deadline is October 2, 2018. See paragraphs 5 and 6 above for contact information and details.

The Cloud Foundation Wins Reprieve for Pryor Wild Horses

The Temporary Restraining Order was granted. See Press Release below. There is a further hearing set for September 28th in Billings, Montana. Learn more at The Cloud Foundation.

THE CLOUD FOUNDATION PRESS RELEASE

Cloud the Stallion. Image: PBS.
Cloud the Stallion. Image: PBS.

Temporary Retraining Order prevents September 2 Trapping and Removal

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO – Susan P. Watters, United States District Judge, has ruled in favor of Ginger Kathrens and the Cloud Foundation in their efforts to protect the small Pryor Mountain mustang herd from capture and removal stating, “Plaintiffs’ application for TRO is GRANTED. Defendants are hereby ENJOINED from conducting the wild horse gather set for September 2, 2018, pending a hearing on Plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunction.”

“We won,” stated a jubilant Ginger Kathrens, who brought the herd to international prominence with her documentaries about Cloud, a charismatic palomino stallion she documented from the day he was born. “I hope that the TRO and what we believe will be a permanent decision later next month, will ensure a lasting future for this unique Spanish herd.”

In her ruling Judge Waters acknowledged that BLM fell short in managing for both rare genetics and the unusual colors.

The Pryor Mustangs are descended of Crow Indian horses (the range borders reservation lands) and before that, the horses of the Conquistadors. Genetic and color experts have concluded that this is a rare Spanish Colonial herd. Their range is located on the Montana/Wyoming border east of Yellowstone National Park. Kathrens, who began her journey with wild horses in 1994, was ridiculed in the Government’s brief for repeated efforts to protect the Pryor Herd, stated. “I hope this is a turning point for America’s beleaguered wild horse herds that have been so cruelly treated and that the BLM will finally adopt humane methods of management that take into account the essential need for family structures and the basic right to live in freedom as the Wild Horse and Burro Act intended.”

In her decision to grant the TRO Judge Watters states: “BLM argues that one removal action will not result in the permanent loss of genetic diversity of the Pryor Herd. … This conclusion is contrary to the evidence before the court. Extinction of a bloodline or phenotype is, by its nature, loss of genetic diversity. And extinction, meaning forever, is certainly a long duration. This court finds that Plaintiffs have established a likelihood of irreparable harm absent a TRO.”

“We could not have brought this suit without a high level of confidence in our donors.” Kathrens continued. “Cloud fans are loyal to wild horses and understand that maintaining the family structure and genetic strength are the essentials to living wild. This one’s for you Cloud!”

“2018 is the 50th Anniversary of the creation of the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range, the first nationally designated area established to provide a home for free roaming horses. What a grand way to celebrate!,” Ginger Kathrens concludes.

The hearing in Billings, MT is set for September, 28 at 9:30.

The Cloud Foundation is being represented in the lawsuit by Katherine A. Meyer, of the Washington DC public interest firm, Meyer, Glitzenstein, and Eubanks.

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The Cloud Foundationis a Colorado-based 501(c)3 organization dedicated to the protection of wild horses and burros living on public lands in the American west.

Everyone knows Raymond: Last mule living with Outer Banks wild horses

Raymond and his harem. Posted online by Patch.com. Click to visit story.
Raymond and his harem. Posted online by Patch.com.

This is some story. “One wild mule found alive among wild horses on Outer Banks”. Have you read it? It’s from The Charlotte Observer. By Mark Price. July 18, 2018.


He staggered off into an island marsh and vanished last winter, leading conservationists to believe the last mule living among North Carolina’s wild coastal mustangs had died.

But Raymond, as locals call him, proved too stubborn to go quietly.

Not only has the once-crippled mule re-emerged on Corolla’s beaches, but he picked up a harem of three mares.

“He’s sterile, but he doesn’t know it and we’re not going to tell him,” says herd manager Meg Puckett. “He challenged a much younger stallion for those mares and he won. That’s saying a lot.”

Even she thought Raymond had died after a risky last-ditch effort was made in November to save him. A group of specialists with the Corolla Wild Horse Fund drugged Raymond and literally sawed down his hooves, which had become so deformed he couldn’t walk.

“A domestic horse would not have survived. He was just too stubborn to die,” Puckett says. “It’s that ornery, stubborn side that has made him one of the best known of the herd. Everyone knows Raymond.”

Islanders took to social media recently to celebrate the return of “the mule who thinks he is a mustang,” as Ann Litzelman put it on Facebook.

See also “Last Mule On Outer Banks So Stubborn He Refuses to Die” at Patch.com who also posted the image above with their own story on Raymond.

Not There Yet: Mustang (Podcast)

Mustang Monument Resort wild horses.
Mustang Monument Resort wild horses.

WILD HORSES — Terence C. Gannon, host of Not There Yet podcast, kindly brought this to our attention to share with you.

MUSTANG

The burden of a name that has come to mean so much.

The word derives from the Spanish mesteño, which is defined as “wild; untamed; ownerless”. By letting the tongue dwell on the roof of the mouth you get to mestengo, a “stray beast”. From there it’s a small step to the word and an idea that has entered into our modern mythology.

Mustangs are wild horses which roam the North American southwest. These were initially descended from horses which escaped, were turned loose or stolen from…

Listen to the rest by going here. The text version of this essay can be found on Medium where it was originally published on August 15th, 2016.