A Gift of Life

McDermitt girls, Faith and Dawn, call to the other horses out in the pasture

McDermitt girls, Faith and Dawn, call to the other horses out in the pasture

Wild Horse Education has in it’s care two orphans from this summer’s contended McDermitt roundup where horses were removed from the range and sent to auction. The girls are doing very well adjusting to human interaction and like the new routine where “all you can eat” is the motto. We had our first “what’s a carrot?” game and the odd orange stick was an appreciated play toy. We are working on having legs and feet handled. These girls are going to make really nice companion or riding horses someday.

Yet now we have received and incredible gift. In 2009 Laura Leigh, founder of Wild Horse Education, wrote a several articles on wild horses. One of the articles was about the horses at Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge. In the article Leigh wrote about falling in love with the horses at Sheldon, the different herds in the Refuge and the danger the horses were in. The article prompted Leigh’s first legal actions ever to protect America’s horses.

Wild Fish Creek stallion and mare at Sheldon NWR

Wild Fish Creek stallion and mare at Sheldon NWR

In the article Leigh wrote about the distinct herds: Catnip/Round Mountain sorrels with flaxen manes and tails, overo pinto sorrels, palominos, some buckskins, Fish Creek herd horses being larger bays and dark horses, a few tobiano pintos, Badger herd being Thoroughbred/quarter horses of sorrel, chestnut, and bay.

Leigh began to search for a horse from Fish Creek to adopt. Adopting a larger dark Fish Creek horse became a research project (Sheldon does not adopt to the public) that led Leigh to find prior findings on horses from Sheldon where horses were sent to slaughter and suffered at the roundups.

The military history was of special interest. Many of us have relatives that served in the US Cavalry. It is estimated that 500 horses left US ports during the height of WWI every two days for the European theatre to server both US and allied forces.

Recently Leigh has challenged the same conduct she challenged in 2009 for the horses being removed from Sheldon. Except this year Sheldon announced that they are removing all horses from Sheldon. Sheldon horses are not available to adopt in any western state unless you can pay to have the horses hauled back from the contractors Sheldon pays to take horses.

Yesterday Halloween “Trick or Treat” brought a very unusual “treat.”

"Rosie," a Sheldon mare removed from the range in 2013 back among the sagebrush of Nevada.

“Rosie,” a Sheldon mare removed from the range in 2013 back among the sagebrush of Nevada.

Meet “Rosie.” 

Named after the iconic figure of “Rosie the Riveter,” the poster for women going to work to support the effort of World War II. Our Rosie is a beautiful big wonderful gorgeous mare from the Sheldon Range. We believe (from information we have been able to piece together) she was captured around 9/11 in this years removal of horses from the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge.

That would make Rosie a likely Fish Creek horse.

Instead of being sorted and shipped to contractors Rosie’s fate became altered when she gave birth days after capture. The foal (a little filly) being too young to ship such far distances was given opportunity for local adoption.

Phyllis Strecker of Midland Texas had an agreement to take all live foals from the roundup. She made arrangements for Rosie to stay in Nevada.

Instead of being sorted as a mare to ship to one of the three locations (pregnant mares are confirmed to have shipped to Strecker and to J&S Associates) Rosie gets to stay in the sagebrush of Nevada with her filly.

"Kidron," the descendent of America's War Horses

“Kidron,” the descendent of America’s War Horses

Meet “Kidron”

Kidron was the famous mount of General Pershing during World War I. “Kidron caught the attention of Americans from photographs showing the General astride the animal, first in a victory parade on the Champs in Paris and then a triumphal parade through the Victory Arch in New York City at the conclusion of the war.” quote from FindAGrave,Kidron

Although the original “Kidron” was a boy, our Kid is a filly. Born just days after capture little Kidron had only known the facility at Virgin Valley.  Kidron now has a chance to know the smell of sage and of rabbitbrush. Like her namesake she was born with rear white stockings…. however it appears our little Kid is changing color and may well be black all over but the swirl on her forehead. We wont know until spring.

Just days after mom was run and captured, little Kidron changed both of their futures forever.

We like to see her as a sign of change that will bring added protection not just to her mommy…. but to all the horses of Sheldon. A new life where people have tried to do the right thing for two… is possible for all.

We are looking forward to working with Rosie and Kid… just like we are showing Faith and Dawn that humans can be fun.


Please help us continue to advocate for our wild horses and protect them from abuse, slaughter and extinction. And if you can help with groceries/supplies for all the ladies that would be appreciated as well. You can donate at this link:

Visit our website for “Operation Sheldon” and learn about the horses.

We do believe that we are on the road to change even though we are still on a “two track” looking for the fast lane on the highway. Updates soon.

Settling in....

Settling in…. and yes… Rosie is getting “all you can eat” to get weight on her for winter. We love you Rosie and Kidron!

Categories: Legal, Sheldon NWR, Wild Horse Education

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