Wild Horse Education

Antelope 8/19 (51 captured, winding down & rain)

As the rains hit the Antelope Complex brining more moisture to a range that has not been this green in over a decade, the massive Antelope Complex roundup winds down.

Let’s get all this up front and out of the way.

BLM is approved to operate roundups in this area and remove thousands of more wild horses through the end on 2026. We are working with our attorneys and will have news for you our litigation that remains very much alive (please be careful getting your info from banter provided by social media desk jockeys). Our team is very busy and we will have a complete update soon.

We also don’t normally add things like “we are the only ones out here,” but we see that tagline being used for a 1 day of a 3 day operation viewed primarily from a holding facility (due to BLM restrictions) by another org. So, we are the only org not to miss a single day of this 42 day operation that came on the heels of Reveille, where we were the only observers present for the entire operation. We did not rotate someone in, have no one here for a few days or just send someone for 2 days.  Feels silly to have to write that, but things have become this absurd that these statements are necessary. 

Now, let’s focus on the wild ones and what they are facing.

51 (20 Stallions, 20 Mares, and 11 Foals) wild horses were captured at a trap BLM had previously run in the north. Access to view was really not provided. This is the only partial run documented for the day.

A number of the traps you have seen this year, as well as over the years, in this area are in something called the “Carlin trend.” The State of Nevada accounts for 80 percent of the United States’ current annual gold output and has produced nearly half of all the gold ever mined in the nation. If Nevada were a country, it would now rank fourth in annual world gold production. Most of Nevada’s gold has come from a five-mile-wide, 40-mile-long strip of land called the Carlin Trend that is the world’s third-richest gold-mining district of all time.

Does this much mining draw down water tables? You bet it does.

While Antelope moves forward many of you have sent 2 mining plans that BLM announced last week were moving forward: The Bald Mountain mine Expansion (Juniper Project) and the Robertson Mine project. There is a third, the Long Canyon mine expansion, that was stopped, but the mine as been sold and the expansion is back on the table with the company shifting to getting the permitting phase completed by 2026. In the Long Canyon area inside the HMA has really limited water available for horse use due to pipelines set primarily for cattle. In the hot season, horses move north… and there are very few horses left at all in that area after this operation (where BLM will not open up any management plan process that would allow how to distribute and keep wild horses on HMA could even be discussed).

Last year, as we sat in a valley wild horses were being removed from an area directly associated with the Juniper project, it was very frustrating not to be able to talk about the habitat loss and how wild horse habitat was being carved up to mainstream media. We did speak with the District manager about creating a mitigation strategy. But it appears we will need to add that to comments, again.

We will review these EISs and have long form stories and sample comments when we finish working with our attorney on this very important case at Antelope. Our wild ones need an enforceable welfare standard and advocacy deserves full disclosure on how BLM determines their paperwork and numbers are accurate.

On top of having to get accurate and extensive documentation to attorney and reports up, our team members are dealing with the same grief of losing thousands of wild ones we know. Not only those that have died or are left fragmented on the range, but we are denied the same opportunities others have for smaller herds.

Most of these wild horses are going into a black-hole of holding; BLM will not allow us access to create a special adoption catalogue (heck, we barely had enough access during operations to even know which horses were captured), no special adoption event and absolutely no public access to check on the horses from the north trap at all as they were sent into an off-limits facility.

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We have always been really good at reporting and then moving to the next and reporting while tracking the aftermath and looking ahead, while trying to prepare all of our readers, to the next round.

Since July 9: South trap captured 1,107. North trap has captured 1,971. 37 have died.

There is no active trapping as the rain falls. We have a team member at shipping this morning. Our team has been onsite each and every day. We are awaiting a formal announcement to learn if Antelope 2023 is finally over.

But we know BLM comes here every single year, at the very worst times of year and run roughshod over these large herds… and they are approved to come back anytime they say they want to through 2026.

We are making a stand.

You can show your support and help us keep our team in the field through the purchase of a “Stop Abuse” t-shirt. We have brought these shirts back for the next 2 weeks by request. Click HERE or on the image below.

Our wild ones should live free on the range with the families they hold dear. Our wild ones should also live without abuse. 

Thank you for keeping us in the fight!

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Categories: Wild Horse Education