- For those unfamiliar with a common scenerio being played out repeatedly around our Nation's wild burros, the Big Bend Sentinel out of Texas has just released an article detailing how wild burros living in Bend Ranch State Park have been shot by high ranking park officials over the last several months - 18 confirmed dead and there may be many more. The burros are being quietly erradicated to "make room" for the native species -read big horn sheep, who brought in almost $800k in raffle sales for a chance to hunt one in the Park. State Parks and Wildlife Communications Director Lydia Saldana stated, "A restoration of desert big horn to the park is in Big Bend Ranch's future". The Parks former manager and 35 year veteran, Luis Armendariz, had instructed employees to conduct an investigation into the the shootings of the burros but Armendariz was suddenly transfered when internal affairs took over the investigation and resulted in his resignation on November 30. Armendariz described the shootings as "inhumane" and one source stated, "a female was shot and the baby was still trying to nurse her - and she was dead." To read the complete sordid affair: http://www.marfatx.com/uploadedfiles/questions120607.html
- ABC News reports from Australia about the "brumby" (aka wild horses) in the Snowy Mountains of the Kosciuszko National Park. Clive Edwards, President of the Snowy Mountains Bush Users Group said, "The National Parks Service is pursuing its own agenda" Really? "The whole process has been a sham....we put in a formal submission, 47 pages, facts and recommendations plus 10,000 individual responses from our members, supporters friends - totally ignored". You don't say? http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/12/06/2111457.htm
- In Canada, we find a similar story though not so dramatic, of wild horses grazing near roads due to deep snow pushing them into the valleys and then becoming a highway hazard. The province and local outfitters are trying to get the horses out of the area but John Groat, another outfitter in the area said he doesn't see any problem with horses roaming Crown land and added, "If a horse gets out everybody makes a big deal of it but if it's a moose or an elk, nobody says anything" http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/story.html?id=2123e1f3-e2a7-488d-a483-792ccf1b8d75&k=92456
- The Carson Ranger District is accepting applications for potential adopters for 22 wild horses removed during November from the Jacita Mesa Wild Horse Territory (WHT). Adoptions are scheduled for December 14 & 15th, 2007. The wild horses were gathered using a low-stress baiting method to meet humane treatment conditions as outlined in the 2002 management plan for the wild horses. However, two horses died during the removals, one from running into a frozen panel that instantly broke its neck and a second one had to be euthanized from that was originally believed to be a gunshot wound. However, Rincon Blanco Veterinarian Clinic determined, due to severe internal infections found in the horse, the wound was likely caused by a fall, not gunshot. In January, 41 wild horses were also removed and 12 in 2006. Click Here for the El Rito Ranger District wild horse page - includes a link to view the wild horses available.
- BLMs has finished removing wild horses from the New Pass/Ravenswood and Augusta Herd Management Areas in NV. New Pass/Ravenswood HMA removed 420 wild horses with 158 wild horses released back into the HMA and 92 mares treated with fertility control - the estimated remaining population is 208-268. The August Mountains Herd Management Area removed 214 with 39 released and an estimated remaining population of 178-192. To obtain a copy of the Final Gather Report, email Susie_Stokke@nv.blm.gov
- On December 1, 2007, the BLM has issued a public notice regarding the establishment of a new system of records for the National Wild Horse & Burro Program. The public has 30 days to review the new system and provide any comments or recommendations before BLM approves it. This new proposal deserves attention! To view the complete article on what the BLM is proposing and who to contact for more information, go to- http://www.tradingmarkets.com/.site/news/Stock%20News/874056/
- American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign has posted the 2007 Final Gather Results and the 2008 Wild Horse & Burro Gather Schedule for those interested in those statistics. BLM releases the Gather Schedule with a "disclaimer" - all gathers, removals and information is subject to change. To view the Schedules, go to: www.wildhorsepreservation.com
- The BLM has announced an extension through December 7, 2007 of their original deadline for public nominations to fill three vacancies on the national Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board. The categories to be filled are: Wild Horse and Burro Advocacy, Veterinarian Medicine and General Public Interest. For experienced WH&B advocates who know how to read between the lines, BLMs extension of the nomination deadline translates into no one has yet submitted a nomination that BLM will "approve of". While advocates who have passionately pursued wild horse and burro preservation have been continually denied appointments for many years, perhaps NOW is the time to try again since BLM seems a little short of qualified individuals they haven't "reappointed to death". For qualifications and submission requirements, go to: http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/info/newsroom/2007/0711/NR_07_11_19.html
- The Bureau of Land Management in Utah has bombarded the public with FIVE Draft Management Plans for establishing how public lands will be managed within the next 10-20 years. These plans will become the guiding foundation for HOW Utahs wild horse and burro herds will be administered and grant BLM the future authority of what they do to those herds. Land use plans are huge documents that require hours of study of BLMs proposals. Posting five of them all within the same few months is yet another effort by land managers to overwhelm the public and consequently, discourage public awareness, participation and involvement.
Moab Draft Management Plan - Public Comments - ClosedVernal Draft Management Plan -Supplemental - Public Input Due by January 3, 2008 http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/vernal/planning/rmp/draft_rmp_eis/draft_rmp_eis.html
Kanab Draft Management Plan - Public Input Due by January 12, 2008 http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/kanab/planning/draft_rmp_eis.html
Richfield Draft Management Plan - Public Input Due by January 26, 2008 http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/richfield/planning/rmp/draft_rmp_eis.html
Monticello Draft Management Plan - Public Input Due by February 8, 2008 http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/monticello/planning/draft_rmp_eis.html