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Groups seek protection for North American Wild Horses under Endangered Species Act

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Originally posted on Straight from the Horse's Heart:

Misclassification of wild horses as a non-native species is politically, not scientifically driven,”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

June 10, 2014 – Friends of Animals (FoA) and The Cloud Foundation have filed a petition with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list North American wild horses on public lands as threatened or endangeredunder the Endangered Species Act (ESA) since the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act (WHBA), which was passed in 1971, has failed to protect our wild horses. Six states have already lost their wild horse populations—Missouri, Iowa, Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

Misclassification of wild horses as a non-native species is politically, not scientifically driven,” said Ginger Kathrens, executive director of The Cloud Foundation. “Wild horses are severely endangered but without recognition of current scientific evidence of their native status, they could become extinct.”

In the early 1900s…

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BLM and Fish & Wildlife Service Experimenting on Wild Horses

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SOURCE: Straight From the Horse’s Heart

by Debbie Coffey                                   Copyright 2013                                            All Rights Reserved.

PART 1 of a series on BLM and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Experimentation on Wild Horses and Burros

(Warning: the photos below may be disturbing to some)

At the upcoming BLM National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board meeting, the board will likely bring up the subject of the field spaying of wild mares.

It is important to keep in mind that the BLM and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (also a Department of the Interior agency) are partnering in EXPERIMENTING on our wild horses (and, in the case of the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, “feral” horses). This BLM advisory board was even discussing tubal ligation for mares (which seems to have been in trials in 2004).

Below is a presentation seemingly by LEON PIELSTICK, DVM, the veterinarian who has been conducting experiments on the field spaying of mares, and it shows (possibly Leon Pielstick himself) spaying a mare at a wild horse sanctuary. There are also photos of a wild stallion during a vasectomy procedure, presumably at Sheldon.

Your tax dollars are paying for this experimentation.

SOURCE: POPULATION CONTROL IN WILD HORSES, Leon Pielstick, DVM

(this is a portion of the presentation of an ovariectomy with chain ecraseur via colpotomy incision) More

Exclusive: Wild Horse and Wild Burro Good News and Bad News from Twin Peaks HMA

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143921428x_coverStraight from the Horse’s Heart

Exclusive: Wild Horse and Wild Burro Good News and Bad News from Twin Peaks HMA

 

Exclusive report from “Grandma” Gregg, Environmental Researcher and Jesica Johnston, B.A., M.A in Biology and Environmental Planning

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“The forage has grown back from last summer’s fire and there is an abundance of food…”

DSC06304_zps35963a14 (1)Last weekend several experienced wildlife observers with binoculars and long-distance camera lens thoroughly combed 77 miles of the Twin Peaks Herd Management Area (HMA) and found only 27 wild horses and 5 wild burros. Is this good news or bad news? This is good news for those few wild horses and burros that remain on their legally designated land, but bad news for the Twin Peaks HMA as a whole. The forage has grown back from last summer’s fire and there is an abundance of food as was obvious by the condition of the few vigorous and healthy wild horses and burros that were observed, but this is still a small and discouraging number of wild horses and burros. This survey is consistent with previous surveys and documentation supporting the impacts of an enormous and devastating roundup in 2010. There seems to be few remaining wild horses and burros in the Twin Peaks HMA. In our two days of ground observation the BLM’s mantra of the term “excess” was on our minds as we traveled numerous miles; most of which had nodsc06304_zps35963a14-1 wild horses or burros or even signs of wild horses and burros. This public land is set aside by Congress principally for wild horses and burros, but there are very few that remain since the roundup of 2010. It is hard to believe when the BLM says there are 1,750 out here again…

Click (HERE) for the entire independent observers’ summary report and many photos.

There has been no further official round-up announcement for Twin Peaks since last fall’s after the Rush Fire Environmental Assessment was published by BLM stating that they were going to capture and remove all but about six-hundred wild horses and burros. It is unknown at this time when this capture has been rescheduled for but in the meantime BLM did an aerial population survey in April of this year and stated there were 1,750 wild horses and burros on the Twin Peaks HMA. This data was FOIA’d and although that number was written on the aerial log, they only photographed 460. They had two photographers in the helicopter and per their map a very thorough coverage of the HMA was done, but they only physically photographed 460 wild horses and burros. Even though we paid with our tax money for four BLM employees and the cost of the helicopter to document the actual population of wild horses and burros … they did not. Over the four days in flight only 26% of the wild horses and burros that were “counted” were photographed.

In fact there were far more photos taken of coyotes, elk, antelope, and other landscape features than of wild horses and burros. Although there was ample opportunity, this left 1.290 wild horses and burros that they “counted” undocumented with photos during the census flight. Why? The aerial census over the four days clearly fails to sufficiently document BLM’s stated wild horse and burro population.

In the meantime, this Thursday will be an important day for the future of the Twin Peaks HMA and all wild horses and burros. This is the first time in the history of the Wild Horse Act that an Appeals Court will determine whether the BLM’s interpretation of the Act is consistent with Congress’s intent to protect these living symbols of the West over 40 years ago.

The 2010 Twin Peaks roundup resulted in the permanent removal of more than 1,500 wild horses and 160 burros from the range. As of August 2012, 977 of the wild horses and burros removed from the range were still in “holding” and hundreds more have died or been sold by BLM to “questionable” buyers and they cannot be accounted for. The BLM failed to consider data regarding ecological resources in the herd management area, and also illegally harassed and captured horses that were not even considered “excess” by BLM’s own standards. Don’t miss this important hearing – please fill the courtroom and show your support for the Twin Peaks wild horses and burros. They need you there…

What: Appeal Hearing for the Twin Peaks Wild Horses and Burros
When: Thursday, August 29, 2 pm – please arrive no later than 1:30 pm
Where: Ninth Circuit Courthouse, 125 South Grand Ave., Pasadena

Click (HERE) to download complete report

 

PLEASE OPPOSE BLM’S DEVASTATING PLAN FOR WYOMING’S RED DESERT WILD HORSES

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Straight from the Horses Heart

RT Fitch

Call to Action from American Wild Horse Preservation.org

BLM Plans to “ZERO OUT” and Destroy Two Unique Wild Horse Herds

Public Comment Deadline: December 7, 2012

Taking its marching orders from Wyoming’s powerful livestock industry, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is planning the second roundup in less than three years of wild horses living in the Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek Herd Management Areas (HMAs) in Wyoming’s pristine Red Desert region. The 1.5 million-acre public land area is managed as a complex due to wild horse movements between the two HMAs. The roundup is proceeding despite the fact that the Adobe Town HMA is substantially below the low end of the Allowable Management Level (AML) of 610 – 800 horses. Even more disturbing, the BLM intends to remove all wild horses on “private land or checkerboard land within the Rock Springs Office portion of the HMA.” Since the majority of the Salt Wells HMA is “checkerboard” (alternating public and private land parcels), and since the wild horses living there cannot tell the difference between public and private land, this raises the alarming possiblity that the entire HMA will be zeroed out!

This stepped-up roundup plan is the result of a lawsuit filed last year by the Rock Springs Grazing Association, which owns or leases the checkerboard lands for livestock grazing. The legal action — which the Interior Department itself advised ranchers to file – seeks to compel the BLM to remove all wild horses from the public and private lands in the checkerboard area. AWHPC and our coalition partners, The Cloud Foundation and the International Society for the Protection of Mustangs and Burros, have intervened in this lawsuit in an attempt to prevent the government from simply settling the case by agreeing to wipe out all the horses on the 2 million acres that constitute the Wyoming checkerboard. Yet, deciding not to wait for the outcome of this litigation, the BLM is now proposing this potentially devastating roundup.

The BLM allows the Rock Springs Grazing Association (RSGA) to graze the annual equivalent of 15,000 cows — or 75,000 sheep — in the alltoments that lie within and around the Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek HMAs, while restricting the wild horse population in this vast area no more than 1,165. The RSGA members enjoy the privilege of grazing their livestock on our public lands, as well as the benefits of the taxpayer subsidies that underwrite below-market grazing rates. It’s time for our government to demand that, in return for those privileges, the RSGA members be required to tolerate the presence of America’s cherished wild horses on the public and private lands in this area. More

Wild Horse & Burro Preservation Groups Announce Salt Lake City Press Conference to Call for Immediate Investigation of BLM “Slaughtergate” Allegations

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Straightfromthehorse'sheart.com

Posted: October 27, 2012 by R.T. Fitch

Award winning Cinematographer Ginger Kathrens to join author R.T. Fitch and noted equine advocate Simone Netherlands in a wild horse and burro advocates press conference on October 29th during opening day of BLM’s Advisory Board Meeting.

Salt Lake City, UT (October 27, 2012) – The Cloud Foundation, Respect4Horses and Wild Horse Freedom Federation will hold a special press conference on the current state of America’s mismanaged wild horses and burros. The groups are calling for a halt to all Bureau of Land Management (BLM) roundups that are destroying the last of America’s wild herds at enormous and escalating taxpayer expense and an immediate investigation into credible allegations where stockpiled wild horses and burros are being sold to known kill buyers for eventual slaughter for human consumption abroad.

The media and the interested public are encouraged to attend this public press conference at the Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown (215 West South Temple) from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. on Monday, October 29th, 2012. The public press event will take place on the opening day of the BLM’s controversial Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board meeting occurring, likewise, at the Radisson Hotel.

Currently the BLM has scheduled massive roundups of wild horses and burros throughout the remainder of this calendar year. Remnant herds of wild horses and burros live in 10 western states, including Utah, but their future is tenuous. The agency responsible for their protection and preservation, the BLM, is managing them to extinction. While the cruel and costly roundups continue, the BLM has no idea how many wild horses remain in the wild while pumping tens of thousands of captured wild horses and burros into both short and long term holding facilities. To date the BLM has stockpiled more than 48,000 + wild horses and burros in costly government holding, leaving millions of acres of legally designated wild horse and burro ranges empty. More

Investigative Reporter Joins BoD of Wild Horse Advocacy Group

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Note from PPJ Gazette:  It is with a great deal of pride in the extensive research and writing produced by one of our favorite authors, Debbie Coffey, that we join with R.T. Fitch and everyone on his site in announcing the position now held by Debbie on the Board of Directors of Wild Horse Federation.  Congratulations Debbie!  From all of us at PPJ!

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Straight from the Horse’s Heart

Posted: June 20, 2012 by R.T. Fitch

Update from Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Respected Writer Lends Volunteer Talent to Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Noted investigative reporter and wild equine advocate, Debbie Coffey, has graciously stepped in to fill the vacancy left by Laura Leigh’s voluntarily resignation from the Board of Directors (BoD) of Wild Horse Freedom Federation (WHFF).

Ms. Coffey brings her clear vision, investigative ability and knowledge of the inner workings of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to WHFF and was unanimously given a vote of confidence by the BoD and the wild horse advocacy, over all. More

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