Nevada BLM set to discuss use of motorized vehicles to manage wild horses

Wild horse helicopter roundup. National Geographic.


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KIBS | KBOV TV, BATTLE MOUNTAIN, NV. (22. Jun. 2020) — The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Nevada will host its annual statewide public hearing to discuss the use of helicopters and motorized vehicles and aircraft in the monitoring and management of wild horses and burros on public lands in Nevada.

The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, June 25, 2020, from 5 to 6 p.m. at the Lander County Courthouse located at 50 NV-305, Battle Mountain, NV 89820. For the health and safety of participants, wearing of masks during the public meeting will be mandatory and all other CDC and Nevada health guidelines will be followed.

The purpose of the hearing, required by the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, is to solicit public comment on the use of helicopters and fixed wing aircraft to estimate wild horse or burro population size and the use of helicopters to gather and remove excess animals. The hearing will also consider the use of motorized vehicles to transport gathered wild horse or burros, as well as, to conduct field monitoring activates.

Nevada’s statewide wild horse and burro population numbers currently exceed 51,500 animals, which is more than 400 percent of the approved appropriate management level of 12,811. Having an overabundance of wild horses and burros above BLM management levels may cause resource damage resulting in limited forage and water availability, which reduces the number of animals that the land can support.

“Helicopter and motorized vehicle usage is a critical tool for managing wild horses and burros on public lands,” said Ruth Thompson, BLM Nevada’s Wild Horse and Burro State Lead. “These management tools allow us to conduct aerial population surveys, monitor animal distribution, conduct safe and effective gathers, and transport captured animals in a humane and efficient manner.”

Since legislated removals began in 1976, the BLM Nevada has removed more than 161,196 wild horses and burros from Nevada’s rangelands. Over 5,477 of those animals have been adopted or sold locally; the majority of animals gathered in Nevada shipped to other states for adoption, sale or older animals are sent to off-range pastures to live out the remainder of their lives.

If you cannot attend the hearing, written comments must be mailed to the BLM Battle Mountain District Office, attention: Jess Harvey, 50 Bastian Rd, Battle Mountain, NV 89820 and must be received by close of business on June 25, 2020, to be considered.

EDITOR’S NOTE. Here is the BLM Battle Mountain Office contact information. Feel free to email them before the deadline. They close at 4:30 pm Pacific time. Comments must be in writing.

Please do this right now while you are thinking about it. Thank you!

Mailing Address:
50 Bastian Road, Battle Mountain, NV 89820


Phone: 775-635-4000
Fax: 775-635-4034
TTY/Federal Relay System:

Want to fax and don’t have a fax machine? Try eFax. They are conducting a free trial.

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BLM tests new fertility vaccine on wild horses

Wild mare and foal. Nevada. Las Vegas Review-Journal.

The Idaho State Journal reports that the Bureau of Land Management is testing a new fertility control vaccine it hopes will curtail their numbers.

The new vaccine tests began last week in Carson City, Nev., a state where most of the nation’s wild horse population exists. 

While wild horses are often treated with a fertility vaccine, the current treatment in use is only effective for about a year and horses must be gathered annually and retreated.

Idaho’s BLM wild horse specialist Heather Tiel-Nelson said a new, long-lasting fertility vaccine would help curb the population explosion.

“We generally apply the porcine zona pellucida (vaccine),” she said. “It’s pretty temporary. It might be effective for that first year, but it’s really not that effective after that. We’ve been applying that to all of our mares we return to the range for a lot of years now. What we’re finding, not just here in Idaho but nationwide is it simply isn’t effective to curb the population growth like we need it to be.”

The BLM estimates that there are 95,000 wild horses and burros in herds across the West compared to 27,000 in 1971 when Congress passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act. Tiel-Nelson said Idaho’s wild horse population is easier to manage than Nevada’s.

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Featured Image: Mustang mare and foal. Nevada. Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Wild horse roundups and sale

24 wild horses die during Bureau of Land Management roundup in Nevada. KLAS News, Ch 8.

Twenty-four wild horses die during BLM roundup in Nevada

KLAS (Feb. 24, 2020), LAS VEGAS, NV — Twenty-four wild horses have died during the Bureau of Land Management’s gather in Lincoln County. The roundup started in early January.

Of the 24 dead, 21 were said to have pre-existing injuries. In all, more than 1,700 horses have been rounded up in the area.

The horses caught are being sent to government holding pens for now before some become available for adoption.

The agency says it’s doing it to prevent the public lands there from degrading too much.

BLM concludes Eagle Complex wild horse gather

BLM PRESS RELEASE (Feb. 25, 2020), ELY, NV — The Bureau of Land Management’s Caliente and Cedar City field offices concluded the Eagle Complex wild horse gather on February 25, 2020. The BLM gathered 1,716 excess wild horses from in and around the Chokecherry, Eagle and Mt. Elinore Herd Management Areas (HMAs) located in Lincoln County, Nevada and Beaver and Iron counties, Utah. The BLM treated 28 mares with the fertility control vaccine GonaCon-Equine and released them with 19 stud horses.

The purpose of the gather was to remove all excess wild horses from areas not designated for or suitable to their long-term management and prevent further degradation of public lands. In the 2008 Ely Resource Management Plan, the BLM decided to manage this area for zero wild horses as it no longer met the criteria for maintaining a thriving ecological balance with multiple uses as authorized under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976. The gather was necessary to improve watershed health, protect wild horse health, and make significant progress towards achieving Mojave-Southern Great Basin Resource Advisory Council Standards for Rangeland Health.

The BLM transported wild horses removed from the range to the Palomino Valley Center Wild Horse and Burro Corrals, in Sparks, Nevada, to be readied for the BLM’s wild horse and burro Adoption and Sale Program. Wild horses not adopted or sold will be placed in long-term pastures where they will be humanely cared for and retain their “wild” status and protection under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act. 

Additional gather information is available on the BLM website at

BLM to offer wild horses, burros for adoption or sale in Ewing, IL

KFVS NEWS (Feb. 25, 2020), EWING, IL — Wild horses and burros from public lands will be available for adoption or sale at an event in Ewing, Illinois.

The event managed by the Bureau of Land Management, will be held on March 6 – 7, 2020, at the BLM Off-Range Corral, located at 22295 Sheep Farm Road, Ewing, Illinois. The adoption, which is free and open to the public, will begin Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

It is currently unknown, how many horses or burros may be available at this event; however, the animals available will be for adoption or sale.

Prospective adopters/buyers must be at least 18 years old and able to provide access to feed, water, and adequate shelter. The basic adoption fee is $25, however, the fee rises to $125 for animals that have been gentled. Title to the animal will be awarded to the adopter at the end of one year if all conditions of the adoption agreement have been met.

As part of the BLM’s effort to find good homes for wild horses and burros removed from public lands, the agency offers financial incentives to encourage qualified people to adopt eligible animals. Through this program, qualified adopters are eligible to receive $500 within 60 days of the adoption date and an additional $500 within 60 days of titling for each animal.

Forest Service plans to reduce number of wild horses in Heber

3TV /CBS 5 NEWS (Feb. 26, 2020), HEBER, AZ — The United States Forest Service is planning on reducing the number of wild horses around Heber, and time is running out for people to weigh in.

The Heber Wild Horse Territory was established back in 1974 and spans around 19,700 acres for the wild horses to roam around on. Based on the latest survey, which took place a few years ago, the National Forest Service says there are between 270 and 420 wild horses in the territory. They say that’s just too many.

Concerns about the horses’ impact on the land have lead the Forest Service to develop the “Heber Wild Horse Territory Management Plan.” It would include sterilizing some horses and removing others, getting the population down to around 100 horses or less. The plan doesn’t call for any horses to be killed. The plan has been developed alongside different groups, including wild horse advocates. But for Mary Hauser, who says she sat in on many of the meetings, the plan to reduce the herd size is a bad one.

See also AZ Congressman requests transparency regarding Heber horse shootings »

Take Action with f4H for the Heber Wild Horses »

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$10,000 reward offered to find wild burro killers

Wild burros are being shot. BLM takes action, offering an reward for the killers.

UPDATE Sept. 1, 2019

The original reward was $10,000 but, thanks to new donations from conservation and animal welfare organizations, the reward has now risen to nearly $60,000, states the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in California.

Have you been watching the news unfold about the numerous wild burros being shot and killed in California and Nevada?

Seems these horrific crimes have been going on for some time. We are not sure why a reward is being offered at this late date, but that’s what the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) are doing.

What happened? Did they arrive at a magic number or something, where they suddenly decided that this had gotten out of hand, and guess they should be seen to be doing something about it?

Here’s what the The Mercury News reports via the Associated Press:

By John Rogers | Associated Press | August 23, 2019

LOS ANGELES — Someone has been killing the wild burros of California’s Mojave Desert, and the Bureau of Land Management is offering up to $10,000 to anyone who can help catch the culprit or culprits.

Over the past three months, 42 burro carcasses containing gunshot wounds have been found scattered along a 60-mile stretch of Interstate 15, the main highway linking Los Angeles to Las Vegas.

The animals, like wild horses, are protected under federal law. Anyone found guilty of harassing, branding or killing one faces a fine of up to $2,000 and a year in jail.

More than that, burros are an enduring symbol of the American Southwest. With their pointy ears and distinctive “Hee-Haw” voices, they evoke a time when their sure-footedness in rocky terrain and ability to carry heavy loads long distances without complaint made them perfect pack animals for prospectors and others.

“Wild horses and burros are an iconic part of the American West and part of our national heritage,” William Perry Pendley, BLM’s deputy director for policy and programs, said in a statement Friday. “We will pursue every lead until we’ve arrested and prosecuted those responsible for these cruel, savage deaths, and we welcome the public’s help to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators to justice.”

Okay. That’s enough of that. Read full article here »