Fox-Lake Roundup

The Fox-Lake range consists of 172,692 acres of BLM land and 5,032 acres of a mix of private and other public lands for a total of 177,724 acres. (Roundup of 2017)

BLM sets Appropriate Management Level (AML) for the Fox-Lake Range HMA at 122-204. In June, 2020, the BLM conducted an aerial flight or population inventory count where the current estimated population is 154 wild horses, which includes foals born this year.

Even though this population count does not exceed AML, BLM plans to capture 88 wild horses, remove approximately 20 excess wild horses, and treat and release approximately 40 mares from the gather area. The released mares will be treated with Gona-Con, a hormonal fertility control agent. GonaCon requires multiple doses prior to release of mares. We will let you know when BLM plans on releasing mares.

BLM said this is “AML maintenance and increasing fertility control.” This roundup is a waste of taxpayer funding that could be used much more productively than slamming this small herd with a hard winter roundup.

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Cumulative totals:

Captured: 82 Wild Horses (38 Stallions, 44 Mares, and 0 Foals) Note: the “daily updates” from BLM note 6 foals captured, but the official cumulative states no foals were captured. 

Deaths: 4

25+ year-old Bay Stallion BLM said “was euthanized in accordance with IM2021-007 due to acute injury (fracture).” 3-year-old Bay Mare was put down due to “a pre-existing injury (fracture).” 20+ year old Bay Stud was put down “due to a pre-existing chronic injury (lameness);” one of the mares being held for GonaCon died due to colic.

You can read more about BLM’s Guidance for Euthanasia HERE.

Shipped to Palomino Valley Center: 19 Wild Horses (13 Stallions, 6 Mares, and 0 Foals)

23 studs were released.

NOTE: Wild horses (mares) being kept in pens where they cannot really move in inclement weather, after being run hard, are at serious risk of developing respiratory infection. Mares will be kept at an off-limits to view temporary corral near the trap location to receive the second dose of GonaCon before release.

37 Wild Horses (37 Mares) have been given the first dose and are awaiting the second before release.

This roundup occurred between two storm systems, the second one expected to last a week. This was ill-conceived and unnecessary (not over AML).

Day 6, December 16:

No capture today.

Two more wild horses have died. 20+ year old Bay Stud was put down “due to a pre-existing chronic injury (lameness);” one of the mares being held for GonaCon died due to colic. 7 (1 Stallions, 6 Mares, and 0 Foals) shipped to Palomino Valley Center.

23 stallions were released back to the range.

Day 5, December 15: Captured 26 (11 Stallions, 15 Mares, and 0 Foals), Shipped: 12 (12 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)

Click HERE for extended report from the last day of active capture. Stallions expected to be released tomorrow.

Video above may seem ordinary, but the sights and sounds of wild horses being trailered off the range sticks in the hearts and minds of every observer. They are extremely poignant to anyone that cares about the wild

Day 4, December 14: 19 (8 Stallions, 11 Mares, and 0 Foals) captured.

BLM says 1 death: “3 year old Bay Mare was euthanized in accordance with IM2021-007 due to a pre-existing injury (fracture).”

Day 3, December 13: No capture due to high winds and inclement weather. Another storm is moving in and we expect no operations again for day 4, or a very short day.

Day 2, December 12: No capture operations today due to high winds.

Video below: This wild horse answers the question “Why did the wild horse cross the road?” to get away from the BLM and the contractors removing them for private cattle.

Valiant escape attempt caused his leg to catch.  Presumably this is the wild horse that was euthanized.

Day 1, December 11:  36 (19 Stallions, 17 Mares, and 6 Foals) captured.

25+ year-old Bay Stallion BLM said “was euthanized in accordance with IM2021-007 due to acute injury (fracture).”

Video below of run 1 and the wild one that catches his leg on panel. We were told, after hearing a gunshot, that a horse was put down after catching legs in trap as he tried to escape and breaking its leg.

Our team observer immediately noticed that barbed wire was essentially being used as an extension of the wing of the trap.

There were two wild horses that crashed through the barbed wire to escape. If the barbed wire is close to wild horses or gates and presents a risk, it is up to BLM in charge to move trap or drop wire. BLM did neither. BLM acts like CAWP is literal only when it benefits them. If it benefits them for CAWP to be “up to  interpretation by the BLM on-site,” then they change the way they interpret CAWP. The vague language in CAWP was created in a paid partnership with UC Davis. It is time BLM to base CAWP on data points and common sense. We will have more on CAWP soon.” (CAWP: Comprehensive Animal Welfare Policy. CAWP is a policy used to carry out existing law. This policy is inadequate and overdue for revision.)

Long video of barbed wire. Video shows the entire run of this band (shortened through edit). The first to go through barbed wire is the roan. Then, nearer to the trap, a bay goes through both jute and barbed wire to race back in view as band mates exit the trap. Then the pilot relentlessly pursues these wild horses. Please remember, this HMA is NOT over AML and NOT experiencing drought and/or low body scores. There is no reason for relentless pursuit of escapees. 

A storm has moved in bringing high winds today and later rain/snow that will persist for a few days. Day 1 was cold, 20-47 degrees. The temp is expected to drop as high winds enter the area.

RIP brave soul


We are working on the year in review. In 2021, our teams took legal action against livestock, mining and are fighting archaic practices in planning that shortchange the wild horse again and again. In 2021, our field teams hit roundups (often being the only ones on-site for weeks) and documented drought issues the agency is blaming on the horses and making deals with livestock and mining.

You can help us continue our innovative work and help keep our teams running for the wild. 

Categories: Lead, Wild Horse Education