Above: Wild horses were run through the trees, mountains and through the valley to an unseen trap location. From the time our observer first noted wild horses, this drive took over 30 minutes. (We have additional drive footage we are logging and will publish if time allows.)
At this trap 52 (26 Stallions, 18 Mares, and 8 Foals) wild horses were captured.
The EA covering this roundup is the largest for wild horse removals in the country and consists of 2 large complexes. The Antelope Complex consists of the Antelope Valley, Goshute, Spruce-Pequop, and Antelope Herd Management Areas (HMAs) and is made up of 1,183,340 acres in Nevada. BLM will also list this HMA as part of Triple B, “The Triple B Complex is located in both the BLM Ely and Elko Districts and consists of the Triple B HMA (Ely), Maverick Medicine HMA (Elko), Antelope Valley HMA west of Hwy 93 (Elko), and Cherry Springs Wild Horse Territory (Elko).” Highways separate this HMA from the bulk of other HMAs in both complexes. In 2017, BLM combined complexes, the 2 million acre Triple B with the 1.2 million acre Antelope, into a single ten-year “Gather-EA,” creating the largest single ten-year roundup plan in the country.
One HMA or another under this EA has been hit every year since it finalized. Under this EA BLM has captured nearly 7500 wild horses and this operation targets 1900; since 2017.
The trap was off-limits to public viewing due to “space” concerns. The Incident Commander (IC) remained with the public on this day saying there was no space for himself at the trap. There were two members of the public.
WARNING: Video below contains some graphic images of injury of wild horse that went down in trailer.
Above: There was another incident with a horse down in the trailer; yesterday there was an incident as well. Unlike yesterday, the incident today appeared to be due to the long and bumpy two-track road chosen for transport and not contention on the trailer. Our observer requested that BLM change trap as the road endangers the welfare of wild horses.
Below: Montage of trailers on the rough road. Travel slowed a bit on the road, but it is not safe with the alkali dust and terrain.
BLM remains at this trap again today.
At temporary holding wild mares are being marked for potential fertility control (BLM is switching from PZP to GonaCon). However, no determination has been made as to which mares, how many or if there will be treatment and release. We believe the decision will be made based on capture numbers later in the operation.
There was a tour of temporary holding. This beautiful grey stud with a blue eye will ship to off-limits holding in Sutherland, Utah.
Our onsite team member is increasingly frustrated after days of feeling the lack of transparency and lack of concern over the wild horse and the stakeholder that represents them. Any rational person that visits a roundup (in one of the remote areas in particular) will begin to understand where the severe lack of trust in the agency takes root.
Our observer, justified in her concerns for the wild horse with visible lacerations on the trailer, asked to see the horse. Then she asked that a photo be taken. Then she asked for the vet report. All denied. Then she asked how to get a copy and was basically told, “We take care of it and you don’t need to know anything.” She was understandably upset by the interaction.
Our off-site team filed a Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) request.
Our team remains on location, in field and at the operation.
In other news, our team filed litigation yesterday in partnership with CANA for the Blue Wing Complex. This is another area BLM continues to utilize these ten-year Gather-EAs without additional in-depth analysis or any active Herd Management Area Plan (HMAP) where methods for allocations of forage, AML, genetics, fertility control, foaling season, boundary lines, range improvements, etc. would be outlined and reviewed.
Fast tracking removals is not management. Doing it without proper NEPA and stakeholder engagement violates so many tenants of public lands and public resource management…. it is outrageous.
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Categories: Wild Horse Education