Federal agents lured 18 wild horses into traps in the Carson Valley during the first two months of this year, sparking outrage among wild horse advocates who have documented generations of that free-roaming historic herd and regularly treated the mares with a birth control drug.
“The Bureau of Land Management took away three generations in one trailer, which is just killing us,” said Mary Cioffi, president of the Pine Nut Wild Horse Advocates. “They pretty much eliminated that entire historic family line that has been in the Carson Valley for generations. There’s a daughter and a son left on the range.”
She said those family members and other mustangs chased the agency’s trailer as it left the Fish Springs area. One stallion, Bodie, the band’s “lieutenant,” avoided capture but came back to the trapping site for days, “galloping around and wailing,” Cioffi said. “It’s heartbreaking.” The mustangs will be branded and the stallions gelded. The advocates have asked that the mustangs be kept together and sent, at their expense, to a private wild horse “sanctuary” pasture.
BLM officials said the traps were set because they received “multiple” complaints about horses on roads and on private property in the Fish Springs area. The agency has said the area can support up to 26 wild horses. Activists estimate there are 79 mustangs in Fish Springs area; the BLM says there about 90 wild horses there.
The captured horses have names and have been internet celebrities for years, with more than 63,000 followers on the Pine Nut Horses Facebook page alone. The wild horse advocates have closely documented the equines’ lives. Most of the mustangs have been photographed from the time they were foaled and their familial relationships are well known.
Wild horse advocates are frustrated that the BLM has devoted so much money and effort to remove mustangs from the small area. Agency officials said the law requires them to do so in response to citizen complaints and that the roaming animals present a danger to motorists and residents. Range managers have said the mustangs are undernourished this winter, but advocates dispute that claim, which they say is contradicted by their photos of the horses.
The advocacy group has treated the Fish Springs mares with PZP, a birth control drug delivered with a dart that can be effective for several years. The group also works with property owners to find ways to keep the animals off private property, including paying for fencing and educating people not to feed the horses. The advocates also have offered to pay for fencing and cattle guards along roadways, but said BLM officials told them there’s no precedent for allowing private groups to build fences on federal land.
Brady Owens, acting field manager at the BLM, said the agency put up a horse trap on private property in January after the landowner complained about mustangs on his property. Five horses – a stallion named Blaze and his mare Bunny; a mare, Noel, and her two colts, Bolt and Smokey – were trapped on Jan. 28. The agency in February set up another trap on public land and lured 13 other herd members into it on Feb. 15.
Cioffi said that for days, BLM workers spread hay on the snow-covered ground as they walked toward the trap, a portable corral, and the horses followed the trail of food. Eleven BLM agents converged on the trap to load the horses for their trip to the agency’s Palomino Valley temporary holding center. Cioffi and other advocates complained that the BLM has targeted the high-profile horses for removal, rather than working with the volunteers who try to keep the mustangs away from private property and roads.
“God forbid a government agency work with the community for a private solution,” said Camille Bently, one of the largest landowners in Northern Nevada. “I’m just so sick of it all. The BLM is criminal, always has been, I think.”
John Humphrey, a wildlife photographer who has been documenting the Fish Springs band for 13 years and has seen the strong familial bonds they share over four generations, said the mustangs are victims of “a people problem.” Some residents, wrongly believing the horses are starving in the snowy weather, put out hay or apples, luring the animals on to private land and closer to roadways, he said. “Then other people complain and the BLM comes in and does its job.”
Humphrey said the problem is exacerbated by the BLM, which falsely claims the herds are starving. “The food that people put out rewards the horses for going into neighborhoods,” he said.
As of Feb. 17, the agency was keeping horse traps in the area and more mustangs may be captured. The advocates said there is little they can do to keep the remaining Fish Springs horses free on the range.
“We’re in a tailspin,” Cioffi said. “We’ve been trying to contact legislators, but that’s not going very well. I think people have become complacent. They think the horses will be removed and there’s nothing they can do about it. The BLM has all the power.”
The first trapping of 5 as well as the second trapping of 13 occurred in a baited trap on public land that the horses were lured to from far out on the range with hay by BLM and/or their contractors.
Thank you for this article. I really hope it gets the story out there. I live in the UK and have been following these horses via their advocates Facebook page for over 10 years now. These horse help to raise the profile of the Carson Valley and the surrounding area. They bring in tourists that want to see them in the wild and therefore bring business for the communities that live there. I truly hope that the remaining horses will be left to live out their lives wild and free & so continue to bring joy to their thousands of Facebook followers.
You have to wonder about why someone would move to an area with wildlife….and then want the wildlife gone…..May God forgive them…..no one else will. The Horse advocates/ volunteers worked tirelessly to redirect horses back to their range….shame on the BLM..and those participating.
Thank you for publishing this🙏. I have watched and been out with them for years. We love them and want something done to protect them.
We want the 18 that were taken returned to their families, and yes they have families.
This is a disgrace and waste of taxpayers money.
These horses bring tourism and are monitored, watched and loved. It to mention population control which is done by PNWHA … no tax payer $$
Use our hard earned money on something useful.
This is a disgrace … let them go !
I live in Western Massachusetts and have been following the Pine Nut Wild Horses for years! The BLM is LYING to everyone!!! These horses are NOT starving – just look at them!!! And it’s winter when even domestic horses shed a few pounds, but the WILDS are in great shape! I plead with the BLM to stop their lies and return our horses back to the range – WE THE PEOPLE OWN THESE RANGES – and we WANT them back!!! Back where they belong – especially BLONDIE!!! If they geld him, it could kill him because he is old and he’s our ICON!!! Remember!!! I live thousands of miles away, but I have invested a lot in these horses! Nevada is a fence out state – those complaining and having our horses removed are breaking the law – and so is the BLM!
I’ve called legislature… Senators… BLM… We vote people in two positions, and they are not doing a darn thing to help… It’s sickening… Frustrating… And incredibly sad for these beautiful families of wild horses and our wonderful advocates, who volunteer so much time… So much time to protect these wonderful horses
This is an awesome article but where are the proof offerings BLM say that they are starving???? They cannot show proof and the BLM has no disregard for theses horses.. it’s sad that they have the “power” to do whatever they feel like it even if illegal..
The BLM needs to work with the local Advocates and those who support the horses. The BLM is wrong on so many things and will not try to solve any problems with the horse advocates. They have created problems for years and PNWHA have shown that birth control can help but many other ideas work also, besides capture and torture the horses. Many are sold for slaughter. The horses also eat cheat grass and other bad invasive grasses that can increase fires in the area. They don’t ruin the soil or land like cows and other animals do. It is cheaper to keep them free than to spend Millions on the round-ups. Many people make money off the round-ups. Helicopters, etc. cost a lot. BLM is wasting money and destroying our horses. The horses even bring in money from the tourist trade. People in many countries follow their stories and love these horses! They need to be free! Don’t believe the stories about starving horses. Not on this rangeland. They are watched by many to make sure all is well with them. It’s also not right that they are being baited and lured into the traps and the populated areas. There is still open land and out there and it will sustain many more horses then the BLM claims. This abuse of the Pine Nut Horses needs to stop. NOW!!!
Thank you for this article.
I don’t understand why the BLM has fought the advocates on every idea they had to help the horses and landowners. And they sent 11 employees to bring back 13 horses? Sounds like more waisted taxpayer money. Work with the community please. And put our horses back too.
The “starving” part is ridiculous. Just look at these horses in the pens. Do they look starved? They took a picture of a stallion from the first 5 that looked thin. He had been out there working to get a band and find mares. It is winter and he had expended energy. He was NOT starved. Please people help these horses!
It is so sad what the BLM is doing to these families of horses that have been running free for Generations! What they are doing is not for the benefit of the horses it is being done to appease a couple of homeowners that moved into their range and now want to complain
I’ve been following the Pine Nut herd for many years from births and getting to know each mustang! Yes, they have families and to see them taken away from their land and separated is cruel!
Please stop the BLM from taking away our iconic wild mustangs and let them raise their families. So sad this is happening!
It costs nothing for them to be free. Per BLM, it will now cost up to $48,000 PER HORSE that YOU, the taxpayer will now pay approx up to $800,000!!!!
The people are outrageously angry and want them back!!! I want them back! They have nothing wrong, all they want is their freedom. Please be their voice and help them. BLM has lied once again, treated these advocates like trash, just the way they treat horses. I am appalled and angry as hell!!!! Bring back our horses!
Thank you for writing this article. As a US taxpayer I have also written BLM & my elected officials to ask they release these 18 mustangs back to their Pine Nut range. My family has been following these mustangs for years & have learned so much about the wilds of Nevada in that time. When there is a team as dedicated, with proven results, as PNWHA the BLM should be receptive to working with all impacted parties not just those asking for removal. PNWHA has been paving a pathway to an alternative management solution for this herd that shouldn’t land on deaf ears & quotes of outdated policy, especially at a time when so many mustangs are ending up in slaughter pens after being stripped of their federal protections. We are asking BLM for diplomacy to consider an alternative solution for this group of mustangs vs removal at taxpayer expense – it beyond frustrating and mind boggling to see this happening. This means anyone who wants mustangs removed can put food out (despite being illegal) & let BLM do the rest. This is 100% a people problem- uncontrolled human populations putting our wildlife at risk (yes- evidence shows horses are native to North America & should be managed as a native species).
Thank you for listening. I have followed this herd for years on Facebook. This is a tragedy that has to be rectified. BLM’s care of Any animals is horrendous and that has to be dealt with as well. I hope we can save these horses and Thank You again for listening and then writing a great article.
The ignorant man that complained and had the BLM set a trap needs to move. The horses were there first. You sir are no longer welcome in Fish Springs. The horses are wanted and welcome you are not. Go back to wherever you came from and lead your very sad, bitter life. You should be ashamed of yourself!
Bunny was named in honor of my deceased mother who had suffered several years with dementia. Wild Horse Bunny is now gone from the wild horse families my mom so loved. During her hardest days I would take her to the horses. She was so calm and peaceful in their presence and now her namesake is gone. I’m devastated about that and the loss these horses have suffered. Blondie was one of moms favorite. He’s an old guy with one mare and it sure would be nice to see him live out the rest of his life free on his home range. Shame on the residents for doing this, they are in the minority!!!!
BLM HAS ALWAYS BEEN AGAINST HORSES AND IN IT JUST FOR THE MONEY THEY ARE CORRUPT AND MONEY HUNGRY AND SHOULD ALL BE REPLACED
I have been following the Pine Nut bands and their advocates for many years. The countless hours these volunteers have spent providing birth control and their results is amazing and NO cost to the American people who own these wild horses! Their success needs to be applauded and studied not destroyed by criminal activity by the BLM. Congressional bill HR 726 should use their accomplishments and model for management of our wild horses . Those in the BLM who participated in the recent criminal trapping need to be prosecuted and fired . Placing feed on roadways and open range to lure these majestic animals into danger needs to stop and all participants need to be criminally prosecuted.demand these bands be returned to their range!
Taking our wild horses off their home range is an abuse and overreach of authority. The Bureau of Land Management, under the Department of the Interior needs a serious investigation into their misinformation and practices.
The BLM have acted like thugs. The BLM is mandated to work with the community in the management of our wild horses. The volunteers have put blood sweat and tears in maintaining these heathy horses with no cost to the tax payers. But the bully tactics of the BLM cost the tax payers $$$$$!
I frequent the Pine Nut Mountains in Northern Nevada to enjoy and photograph the wild horse herd there. People from all over the world visit them. The Bureau of land management, under the department of interior, has committed an egregious overreach of authority. The range is not overly crowded and the herd is in great shape. I hope they bring Blondie and his family back.
I just met this herd last year, Blondies herd, but it was Bunnie whom I met 3 years ago when she was first born on the range. Her story taught me the incredible family bonds of these horses and this herd that has been separatedand removed from their home. Bunnie was badly injured and for months her family, Dam and aunties, would tend to the wound by licking it and stopping when she needed to rest. For months until she was heald. Her removal is so unjust to be removed from her family who is quite obviously a unit and for no good reason. The BLM had no right in this manner to remove any of these horses in dead of winter. All of whom are in great shape and healthy. Shame on the the Bureau and shame on those allowing this travesty. Return the 18 to their home. Blondie is 20 years old all he has known is the range now he will be gelded and left to live in a pen tull he dies. A tragedy.
Return the Pinenut 18.
That was so wrong baiting the wild horses they wasn’t hurting nobody they help to balance the environment
SHAME on the BLM!!! The feds apply a broad bush technique of a 50+ yr old federal policy to local areas with willful disregard of local specifics to; geography, available food and water sources, local advocates tracking the herds and teaching others, engaging in population control by darting mares and a host of other efforts to keep the wild ones in safe and open spaces. It’s bureaucratic arrogance personified and a waste of our tax dollars!
BLM Lies & waste taxpayers dollars. People travel from everywhere to see the horses. They spend $ there. There is enough land for all the horses. Put the cows in a fence! Cows & sheep destroy the land! Return the horses.
BLM Bureau of Land Management is a Federal Agency. the only help wild horse advocates will be able to get from contacting Legislators (if they are talking about NV lawmakers) is sympathy and possibly influence with a U.S. Senator or a U.S. Congressman.
Send your support letters to Whitehouse.gov or to the Senate or House. They have influence over BLM via laws they enact, or a president can issue an Executive Order.
Please please please…… help with any support or voice you can to help keep our Pine Nut / Fish Springs horses free! I have watched and admired these iconic families since the mid 1990s… I have owned in the Fish Springs since 2001 and am literally sick with heartache with the recent BLM removals. Shame on the individuals who don’t respect or ignore the culture and environment in which they moved to. Our advocates have been proactive and have tremendous support of the large majority of residents. Let them / us care for our horses… BLM continues to act officiously and dismisses the amazing work and documented statistics that the local efforts are in fact working !!! Bring our horses back and send BLM to the areas where their efforts might be better utilized! These horses are healthy and closely monitored …. Even followed by individuals across the states a d beyond.
The PN advocates and volunteers have done everything to ensure these horses can and should remain free even darting at their own expense. These horses and their well being is monitored daily by photographers and advocates also the public that take tours just to see these wonderful family bands that we have watched and loved from afar. I myself have travel to the area just to see them. They are technically the public’s horses and the land as well. They are not underweight we have that documentation as most are photographed daily. If the BLM had intended to work as they said with the advocates they would have got them back to the hills and off the roads. Those horses were baited there to the traps. It is appalling what lengths this corrupted government agency will go to to remove these national treasures….the very ones they are assigned to protect. Every damn one of them should be ashamed. They knew and meant to do this. Put those horses back. You illegally took them. I hope you all have to answer in a court of law for the lies and coverups you have perpetrated and in a higher place for the crimes against nature. May your families be separated
I love the horses so much. Thank you for sharing. This is a sad story.
I live in Spain and am following these beautiful horses for many years !
It’s a shame what BLM does to these wonderful souls and horse families 😢 BLM is lying to all the people. These horses are not starving, BLM has no proofs, look at these well fed beeings It’s just criminal what BLM is doing. It’s not acceptebal to lure them with food in the traps. The horses were there first and nobody forced people to live at their land ! All the advocates are doing a very hard job and endless work to keep their wildies safe.
BLM is a disgrace and spending millions from the tax payers. It costs nothing to let the horses free on THEIR homeland !
BLM please: work together with the advocates to find a good solution for the wild horses, thank you ! The horses need to be protected.
I live in Oregon now, but did live in Carson Valley and am familiar with these horses. I’ve written and called everyone I can think of on behalf of these horses. I think with Nevada being a “fence out” state, what BLM is doing is criminal.
The BLM needs oversight by a FEDERAL Cabinet member, not just Department of the Interior staff. The general public truly doesn’t get what is happening out West. Hopefully there will be more documentaries and journalists describing the facts,and what happens to these horses that are rounded up. It’s unacceptable, and a form of animal cruelty. Until someone prosecutes the individuals ordering these roundups, or the idiots luring wild horses onto their own property, BLM employees will continue with their bureaucratic lies and try to go under the radar or government watchdogs.
The BLM are our enemies! Always have been, and always will be! They possess way too much governmental power, & tirelessly threaten the freedoms we have on a daily basis. Shame on them for not working with our community in coming up with a mutual plan in addressing this situation. Rounding up the horses to keep them in a disgusting holding pen is NOT the answer! Praying these horses all get to the same sanctuary some day. It’s so sad to see and hear the aftermath of what the remaining horses are going through while missing the rest of their bands. SHAME ON YOU BLM!!! 😡
Just because BLM has been given the ‘power’ does not make their actions right. Pine Nut Wild Horse Advocates (PNWHA) are not the enemy and have tried over and over to communicate/work with BLM. Removing three generations of wild horses, in this most recent roundup, because one or two people have complained that the horses are on their unfenced property is not the answer. The people that have illegally fed, not fenced their property and BLM bait trapping by spreading hay all across the range is wrong on more levels than I can fathom. PNWHA is an advocacy group that are very well educated to the health of these bands of wild horses and have willingly invested their time 24/7 in identifying, documenting, monitoring, with birth-control reduction of 90%. The Fish Springs horses are not starving by any means. The range is large enough and there is plenty of food and water to sustain these few dozen majestic national treasures. Birth control darting costs approximately $700 per mare over her lifetime. PNWHA provides this at zero cost to the taxpayer. BLM has stated it costs approximately $48,000 per horse to have them in BLM holding pens. How fiscally responsible is this? It is not! Aside from the fact the holding pens are filthy, the stallions are gelded, families separated, and then sold off to kill buyers. It is a brutal, cut-throat, cruel and inhumane ‘business.’ Removing, Blondie, a 20+ year old stallion, gelding him along with all the other stallions, decimating his family and bloodline is a travesty. This is abuse of power beyond measure and it needs to stop. BLM you are wrong; free the horses back to their home range unharmed and work in collaboration with PNWHA to protect these nationally treasured wild horses. Why not spend our tax dollars educating the public, collaborating with local advocates, reseeding the range, putting up signs telling people to stay on the main roads and prevent range fires. We all want a healthy range that supports all wildlife. Removing these horses is senseless and cruel. Please look for other solutions.
I don’t understand how the BLM has the right to come in and take these horses. If anything they should drop hay for them further out in the pinenuts land. There is plenty of land for them to range free. This is the wild west. The city people moving here need to fence their property and leave their city and liberal views were they came from or move back.
The BLM is a heartless government agency with no regard for the wishes of the people – mad with power, they do whatever they want despite the rights of We The People. It is very obvious from photos these horses are not “starving” – and I concur with the previous posters comment – why do you move to a area where there is wildlife and then want it gone? Go back to your concrete jungle.
I feel the BLM is just waiting for an excuse to round them up. Why are the people not required to fence the horses out of their land if they don’t want them on their property. Nevada is a fence out state! Makes me sick that they removed these healthy, beautiful and beloved horses from their home to live in the BLM’s filthy holding pens! They need to be returned to their home! Shame on you BLM!
It is, indeed, shameful how quick BLM Carson City Field Office is to jump at any excuse to remove the wild horses. There seems to be a particular perversity at work that is thwarting them from obeying the true spirit and intent of the wonderful and progressive Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, as we see here in the southern Pine Nut Mountains which is part of their original legal Herd Area and where they should be treated as the principal presences and given priority resource utilization and much higher population levels so they can be genetically viable. Thought I do not agree with PZP, still I am on board with these caring Fish Springs wild horse defenders and pray that the day shall soon arrive when the BLM as our public officials and servants shall honor the very beneficial role that these naturally living horses play in restoring ecosystems and ancient and long-standing returned North American natives.
Horses are an invasive species in Nevada. They are feral, not wild and are an ecological disaster to boot. Horrible for native plant life, and in turn bad for the rest of the natural ecosystem here.
Blah, Blah, Blah the BLM is evil tho… God forbid we rehome an invasive animal rather than outright killing them.
This is unfair and a waste of taxpayer dollars. they cost ZERO in the wild, yet just these few will cost the taxpayers approx. a MILLION dollars a year! 11 men to move a few horses?!? more waste! Watch the video and see how careless and dangerous they are with the horses, as well! Have been watching our wilds since the 70s!!!
At the VERY least, they need to release Blondie back into the Wild! He is a Senior stallion and deserves to live his days wild and FREE! This is an abuse of power and of what BLM is supposed to represent!
The people and organization involved with the removal of these wild horses will have bad karma the rest of their lives. I guarantee it, no holds barred.
Instant Karma’s gonna get you, knock you right on your head…
I live in the U.K. and like others have been following this group for years. The PNWHA in part got me through the pandemic. On the lowest of days, I took comfort in learning more about the familial groups and looked forward to the latest daily updates. I am planning a trip to the area in 2024 due to these wild horses. As others have said, they contribute much to the area through tourism and awareness of this little spot of Nevada.
It seems to me there are many solutions that could be considered which allow the wild ones to live in peace whilst also protecting property etc. I just can’t compute why the BML would refuse free fencing and take on the captivity costs of this group instead. It’s utterly heartbreaking to see how they suffer in filthy pens, separated from their families. Especially the older ones. If you are reading this, please do all you can to raise awareness to local legislators.
Yes, they are wild horses. Do you still have the same bleeding heart when it comes to raccoons, coyotes, deer, and mountain lions? I doubt it, those are the animals you want removed as they are considered to be a nuisance. Wild horses can also fall into that category. They can also damage property, harm people and pets. Imagine how outraged you’d be if it became legal to hunt the horses once their population is out of control?? These horses may have looked healthy upon capture, but there isn’t anything stopping wild horses from falling into the starving category. They can die of hunger, thirst, injuries, ect.
Right now they are being fed, watered and they have shelter. They aren’t on the range in the cold and snow. If these were private horses, you all would be calling animal control if they were left outside with no shelter or a horse blanket in these temperatures.
Blm is saving these horses and I am glad my taxpayer money goes to saving their lives. I cannot tell you how many dead horses and skeletal remains I have seen when I am exploring. Luckily, this band has been saved from that demise.
We have followed this herd, and the horse advocate group, for years and we are appalled that this is happening. When Deb Haaland, a Native American, was appointed as the Secretary of the Interior I thought headway would be made at BLM to better care for our wild horses and burros. Apparently I was being naïve, a trait of which I have never been accused. I thought she would clean up the BLM and stop the senseless round ups and removals. Obviously I was wrong. From one Native woman to another I say this to Secretary Haaland: you should be ashamed of yourself for not protecting Mother and all her children, be they two legged or four.
Very sad that the blm has the authority to remove horses. They don’t report to any other agency therefor they can recklessly move in and cause havoc where there once was harmony. They are destroying the ecosystem on that range. Pretty soon when they finish their job of removal there will be nothing left there. The blm needs to be accountable to the PEOPLE!
I could never work for agency that does such things ever. I could never sleep knowing that I am causing another such pain.
If people don’t like Nevada wildlife then please don’t move to where they are.
HELP US SAVE OUR WILD HORSES!
Our community in Gardnerville, Nevada is totally heartbroken by the loss of 18 wild horses. The Bureau of Land Management of Nevada has decided to set a trap, and has taken away, a complete bloodline that has been on our range for generations.
Our Pine Nut Wild Horse Advocates and volunteers are dedicated to working very hard to protect the wild horses of Carson Valley, as well as the range they roam on. These historic bands, have roamed the hills of the Pine Nut Mountains for decades.
Please, help us SAVE them, they are a part of iconic American History. This is so important to us and to so many others worldwide. Please reach out to the Pine Nut Wild Horse Advocate’s on Facebook.
This is what America means to me, The freedom to roam!
Sometimes, some things, are worth fighting for, HELP US, HELP THEM!!
This band, Blondie’s band, needs to be returned to their home. It’s the only right thing to do. Stop the madness and prove we can co-exist with these beautiful horses! Please
Not going to say anything against BLM or Advocates but will say something about the people who’s comments are against the wild horses. You live or more likely moved into a state that has more Wild Horses than any other state. These horses are used to draw people into the state. They were here long before you were. If you don’t like them go back to where you came from. Your probably one of the so called several callers that BLM received. You think these horses are better off under BLM care…well in a few weeks go out to the holding facility and look at how much they deteriorate in a holding facility. You may not even recognize them. Shame on you. There’s plenty of other states that don’t have wild horses. Go live there.
The reason the BLM is removing the wild horses is because they want to be able to sell as many grazing leases to the big ole boy ranchers & cattleman’s associations as they can! It’s all about the money. Deb Haaland, Dept of Interior is over the BLM & she’s doing nothing!!! We’ve gotta unite & fight, that’s the only way!
To lure these horses with hay and water to trap them should be a federal offense and in fact is except for the fact that these trappings were done by the BLM who has never done anything to protect these horses. They are beloved horses and managed humanely on the range and should be returned intact so that their genetics and families can continue to thrive. Residents who don’t want horses in their yards should erect fences to keep them out, not move to horse habitat and demand their removal.
The BLM knows what it’s doing is wrong, but the people in power have long been corrupted by special interests. This capture is needless, cruel and inexcusable. Private landowners can fence their property if they object to the horses wandering onto their property. And no, horses are not “feral”, the species originated in North America. We humans are the feral species on most lands occupied by wild horses.
Placing hay out on the snow- day after day—in order to lead them closer and closer to a trap—- and even on private land ?! Your mission is to help preserve wild bands and there is no reason it can’t be done using other solutions readily available other than interference and removal.
Lets see, a consolidation of a few of inflammatory statements being used by advocates in an attempt to rile up people with no understanding of range management, laws, regulations, or history might be in order. Here we go, all cut and pasted from comments…
shame on the BLM
The BLM is LYING to everyone!!!
The BLM is wrong on so many things, BLM is wasting money
BLM has fought the advocates
BLM has no disregard for theses horses ( meant to say “regard”?)
this corrupted government agency (meant to say corrupt?)
BLM has lied once again
The BLM knows what it’s doing is wrong
BLM who has never done anything to protect these horses
The BLM is a heartless government agency
Wow. Amazing how people from the UK, Massachusetts, and other far flung regions have the insights that us folks who have resided here for our entire lives somehow lack. Do a search on “BLM” in the local newspaper in the Gardnerville-Minden area and see how many articles have been published and notices made for public input into local planning on BLM administered public land. I think you’ll see quite a few. Just because things don’t go your way in life doesn’t mean laws are being broken or that the government is corrupt. Quit with the inflammatory rhetoric…it sounds unintelligent .
I have travelled tens of thousands of miles in Nevada over the years and can tell you there are tens of thousands of horses on BLM administered land in Nevada right now. I believe this is an undisputed fact that the advocates and BLM actually agree on. They are in no way threatened, unlike some of the true “wildlife” and plants are. The horses mentioned in this article are more like backyard pets for the people of Fish Springs (at least those who like them to hang around for photography sessions) than “wild” horses. They are good for tourism but they are similar to any other grazing animal in that when they are allowed to overpopulate an area they cause habitat destruction. The Virginia Range (the next mountain range to the north of the Pine Nut Mountains) is overrun by horses and there is little feed for them, let alone any other grazing animals. Drive between Silver Springs and Fernley right now and you can observe hundreds without leaving the highway. The few springs are stomped in, compacted, and degraded to the point where the habitat destruction is appalling. The Virginia Range is almost entirely private property, not BLM administered land. It has lots of horses though, many of which have ribs showing and lack vigor. Habitat destruction and starving horses is much sadder to me than regulated removal.
I could go on but those who think with their hearts don’t ever want to listen to logic and sound advice on habitat and forage, it’s too boring. Its much easier to listen to your heart.
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