Good Morning America Story

Please post comments and corrections below– BLM mistruths given a lot of time in this piece. http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Weekend/critics-cry-amid-western-wild-horse-roundup/story?id=9703124

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70 Responses to “Good Morning America Story”

  1. Marilyn Wargo Says:

    It is good to be on the big network. That aside, where was the mention of the many deaths, the cattle that have preferential treatment on the horses land, the lies that BLM tells and GMA repeats?

    I wish someone would take their video and do a voiceover with real facts and talk about the horses being seen. Then send it back to GMA so they can can see how much bigger a story this is and they need to do a lot more research. I hope they will do a followup. Monika has a conatact list. I will post it… We need to keep in touch with them and tell them they barely scratched the surface; no Ruby Pipeline… mar

  2. Marilyn Wargo Says:

    The wrangler lied, also, makes me angry…. here is a contact list, please use it a as many times as possible and let’s see if we can keep them on this;
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  3. true15 Says:

    Let’s also correct Wikipedia which claims that the horse is feral and that it reproduces rapidly. I get the impression that on average people think that mares give foals every month or so.

    And it is great that the network are catching up.

  4. LOUIE COCROFT Says:

    DID YOU ALL READ THE TERMS OF USE PART REQUIRED BEFORE COMMENTING? THIS ONE (abc) SEEMS TO BE EXTRA “LEGAL” SOMEHOW. WHAT ARE WE AGREEING TO WHEN WE AGREE? ANY SNAGS? GOT MY COMMENT READY TO GO–AS LONG AS I CAN LOG IN.

  5. jan eaker Says:

    Have already commented and will also write to them about expanded coverage,

  6. Barbara Warner Says:

    These are my comments to ABC but I don’t see them posted. Another page came on for comments so I put them there also.

    The tall tale Secretary of Interior Salazar and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is telling the American public that the wild horses are being rounded up because there is an over-population and they are starving is outrageous. Anyone who has two eyes can see how fat and healthy these wild horses are. Sure there may be a rare one that is thin because it is old or nursing a late foal but this is not the norm.
    Why aren’t the facts told like the nearly half billion tax dollars spent to subsidize the welfare ranchers ? Then there’s the 1990-91 GAO ( Government Accounting Office) study that proved the 6-8 MILLION cattle are causing the over-grazing and riparian area damage–not the less than 15,000 wild horses still free in ALL the West. What about the birth control being given to all the returned mares ( what few there are) that will prevent pregnancies for at least 2 years? Now 85% of the herds are not genetically viable which requires a number of at least 150 . Also more than 100 herd management areas have ben zeroed out–all wild horses removed–leaving less than 200 areas and some of those have only a few horses.
    Some years ago the report called “Managing for Extinction” was published by the Animal Welfare Institute. It only costs $3 or you can read it online. Also Vanity Fair published an excellent article on the plight of OUR wild horses and one real expert, Karen Sussman, predicted our American wild horses will be extinct in a few years if the Dept. of the Interior and the BLM and other agencies continue wiping them out .
    Americans are having their wild horses stolen from them by the very government that was supposed to have protected and preserved them according to the 1971 Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act. It’s time everybody calls D.C. legislators at 202-224-3121 and President Obama at 202- 456-1111 and demands that the roundups be stopped now before it’s too late. Extinction is forever.

    • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

      Barbara –
      I was also wondering – if more than half of the BLM’s budget is going to the care and feeding of the Captives – as outlined by the official BLM spokesfella and HRH Salazar – then what, pray tell, is the remainder of the budget being used for??

      The Wild Ones are not shod, wormed, trained, groomed, grained, fed, watered or vetted, and not a one of them is ‘collared’ for the purposes of ‘location’. The use of ‘birth control’ is spotty and inconsistent Bureau wide. The Bureau’s management of the entire WH&B Program is, by modern standards, PRIMITIVE. And, if the range were being ‘managed’ as the Bureau’s responsibilities require, why were steps to ‘regrow’ the range NOT taken before this ‘terrible’ Wild Horse Die-Off occured?

      Where the hell is my money goin’?

  7. Barbara Warner Says:

    Not only was there the GMA program but there is an appalling youtube of a horse down at Fallon that can’t get up along with another horse that appears to have aborted her foal. After seeing this I went out to the barn and cried on Gypsy’s ( my rescued wild horse) shoulder and I do not cry easily . This abomination must be stopped now before it’s too late.

  8. Suzanne Moore Says:

    I commented several times…

  9. Amy Coulter Says:

    I watched the GMA piece with my husband, who has certainly absorbed some info from me, but is not an “advocate”. I think overall it was a good piece for the horses. The anchor people seemed sympathetic, and the footage was quite good. The footage really told the story to people who have no clue what’s going on. The best way to bring folks into the fold is to keep it simple, and that’s what the GMA footage did. Horses running wild. Horses chased by helicoptor. Horses packed in corrals. Horses jammed in a truck driving away. They made the point that there are more horses in captivity than on the range. Sure BLM did it’s standard dog and pony show, but to an (almost) objective viewer, my husband found the piece to be pro-wild horse. The pictures really do illustrate the issue better then any talking head.
    As for Madeline…don’t want to look a gift horse sanctuary in the mouth, but she was superfluous. And in a fur coat?

  10. jan Says:

    try getting in touch with diane sawyer – her husband is mike nichols and they breed arabians – probably can google and find their ranch online – she loves horses

  11. Lisa LeBlanc Says:

    I watched the GMA and, while I certainly appreciate the publicity, it was a little anemic. Forgive me; I’m not being ‘judgy’, but I AM concerned that Advocates, at least in mainstream media, seem to be represented by the Emotionally Clueless (as indicated by His Royal Secretary-ness) and Celebrities. Little attention is given to the HORDES of scientists and attorneys, actual stockmen (the guys who tend their OWN herds without government assistance) and equine experts in one field or another who also advocate.
    Being angry is essential. But being sneaky another essential. You have my assurance – the information below is factual and based on easily-accessed data. I’ll reference some of it, if I remember where I found it, and please, feel free to holler it to anyone who might find it useful; I’m a newbie to the various websites and blogs and I’m having some difficulty navigating. Please, share this stuff:

    FY 09 Data, BLM HERD AREA STATISTICS (this does not account for Herd Areas, only Management Areas, whatever the hell that means)
    Herd Management Area
    Total Acres:
    31,864,461
    divided by
    Total Equines:
    36,940 =
    1 Equine per 862.60 Acres (the math is mine)
    AML
    26,578 =
    1 Equine per 1198.90 acres

    Nevada Acres
    15,249,265
    Nevada Equines
    17,461 =
    1 Equine per 873.33 acres
    AML
    12,688 =
    1 Equine per 1201.87 acres
    This is what the BLM is trying to pass off as fact – that it takes 1200 acres to sustain a single wild equine. BE PISSED.

    Gas prices, nationwide, have dropped and stabilized to less than 3.00 a gallon. Hay prices, according to the USDA report filed yesterday, have stabilized to $110 a ton for alfalfa and $99.10 a ton for other hay.
    The added expense to care for Captives for FY 2010 is not, in my humble opinion, to care for the existing Captives but in anticipation of THE 11,000 ADDITIONAL CAPTIVES, BEFORE THEY WERE EVEN ROUNDED UP. BE PISSED.

    And finally, since 2001, according to a GOA report in October 08, 74,000 Wild Equines have been removed from the range. According to USGS archived reports, wildfires in the years ’02,’04,’05,’06 and ’07 have destroyed OVER 43 MILLION ACRES. The loss of human life and property, wild life and habitat, and the tens of millions of dollars it cost to fight these fires – is this also covered under AML? BE PISSED.

    Now, I couldn’t find any corollary info on the wildfires as they related to herd mangement areas, but if any of you can direct me to a Western map of those areas and maps of the wildfires, I’d be willing to quite a few of those fires overlapped, on or near, management areas. The BLM never takes into account the benefits the Wild Ones provide to the range, do they?

    So one more point, and again, BE PISSED: This winter is the wettest in about five years. When the melt begins, streams and rivers will overflow, aquifers will refill and the ranges will become lush with vegetation. But come summer, when the heat dries out the tall grasses that wildlife and cattle can’t eat, the range will be down 11,000 wild equines.

    It’s my sincerest wish that wildfire history does not repeat itself again this year.

    My love to all of you…

    • Nora Morbeck Says:

      Thanks for passing this along. Yes, it certainly seems bizarre that a single horse needs over 1000 acres to find enough forage to survive in the wild! How the BLM figures those numbers is beyond me …

      Interesting about the alfalfa prices. Wild horses shouldn’t even be eating hay that rich, and probably shouldn’t eat anything as moderate – high in quality as fescue or bermuda.

      So, this information comes from the government in relation to what they’re feeding wild horses in captivity and how much it costs? Projected costs to be incurred by the BLM for the fiscal year 2010?

      • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

        Early last year a BLM spokesman was decrying the rising costs of feeding the Captives (more than half the alloted budget) due to increases in hay and transportation costs. There was no specification on WHAT they were feeding, only the cost ($300 per ton). In that same vein, Fiscal 2010 costs of the WH&B Program, specifically Captive Care, are predicted, by HRH Salazar himself, to be about $9M more this year than last. All the data gleaned, except for gas prices, was retrieved from agencies under the umbrella of the DOI.
        No matter how much I want to save the Wild Ones and ensure the survival of the Captives, I will not contrive or fabricate data; that would defeat the entire purpose of Advocating. But I will more than happy to throw BLM and DOI Publicly Accessible information back in their faces.

      • Laura Evans Says:

        The thing that really bothers me about all of it is when the infromation is reported it’s always said that the blm spends millions of dollars on the WH&B program. They never clarify that the money is being spent on the capture and holding part of the WH&B program. So many people are out there thinking that taxpayer money is going to feed these horses that are starving out on the range so it’s cheaper just to round them up. That is one HUGE misrepresentation that I feel if we could get the media to pick up on would turn alot of people around.

      • morganjservices Says:

        Laura:

        You are right about the money never being clarified. Also, never – ever – ever clarified is:

        1. The DOI received a 50% budget increase from congress last October to handle all the BLM expenses of Mustang/Burros in prison pens.

        2. The DOI refuses – flat out ignores the law- to disclose the head count of Mustangs and Burros in prison pens. The public is not allowed to view all Mustang/Burro internment camps in the U.S.A.

        3. The DOI and BLM routinely over estimates the wild herd populations.

        4. The BLM acknowledged NO deaths, injuries or forced abortions of foals (I have no trust. I wonder if the mares were given a drug to abort in holding).

        5. The BLM never mentions that PZP is being administered to nearly every single released mare so the new & low population will NOT grow in the next 2 years.

    • gale e muellenhoff Says:

      Well done – Lisa on your stats – in order for anything positive to happen the powers to be have to be swamped with statistics – and even then it is a long shot – they are he– bent on annihilating them.

      I think there is a bigger piece to this puzzle than what is being disclosed – cattle, pipelines who knows – they are using starvation and overpopulation as a tear jerker for those whom are not well versed – i.e. the media .

      • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

        Oh,wait, Gale, there’s more:

        One of the primary fuels in wildfire is the dreaded Cheatgrass, an invasive grassy weed. It is a winter annual, and it is starting to sprout RIGHT NOW.
        When cheatgrass is young, it is green and sweet and nominally nutritious; cattle, wild equines and other range animals have only a short window to graze on it. It’s fast growing and nearly impossible to irradicate.
        It is thought that cheatgrass is causing environmental damage on an epic scale because it’s seeds can actually withstand being burnt to the ground, over and over, and will actually overtake an area that has been ‘disturbed’ by wildfire.
        In a few months, it will grow tall, sucking water and nutrients from the ground, starving it’s competition. Then, it dries out.
        All of this by mid-spring.
        By mid-spring, the range will be down 11,000 lawnmowers.

  12. Amy Coulter Says:

    Lisa-thanks for the excellent information. I actually have a friend who studies wildfires for a living. She lives in CA. I will contact her today and see what we can come up with in terms of mapping HMAs affected by wildfires.
    Please share your sources–if they are BLM’s own public records, GAO records, and USGS records. If you used a government site to open them, please share it so we can all do some research.
    This is great information! Thanks!

    • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

      Ann-
      The GAO report is available on the website GAO.gov. Type BLM in the search window, then wild horses in that search window. There are 4 reports on investigations into the BLM going back to the early 80’s. The most recent is October 08. It’s 88 pages long and dry but I think it could be a useful tool.
      The BLM Herd Data sheet was acquired from the Equine Welfare Alliance site, but you may be able to access it directly from the BLM. Be aware – report data is inconsistent; the numbers seem to change from report to report.
      The Gas Price report was not a government affiliate and of course I didn’t write that website down, but I think you can Google or Bing ‘Gas Prices’ and score. The hay price index was from the USDA website.
      The USGS has a wildfire tracking system that shows, on a map, current wildfire conditions. But there’s a link for past wildfires; while I couldn’t access an actual map, the stats for the wildfires I mentioned since 2002 are there. I added up the stats for acreage lost since 2002 and came up with over 43 million acres. Keep in mind – some of that acreage may have reburned in subsequent fires, but those are still unacceptable losses and expenses.
      It occured to me – with the economy finally becoming more user-friendly, why was the BLM’s WH&B program going to cost so much more this year than last? Because the DOI had already determined in September of last year that the Wild Ones were going to be ‘starving’.
      One other question I hope someone can answer for me – were any ’emergency gathers’ contrived during the wildfires? Because I would understand that if it were the case.

  13. Nettie Hoffer Says:

    Definately, the listed dames are cute but these ones are ready and willing. Check out Annette Colom http://bit.ly/blPb0

  14. jan Says:

    remember in one of the cloud videos there was a fire and ginger was worried about the horses but the fire did not reach the horses

    fire can be a good thing too – when they had that huge fire several years ago in yellowstone, they had to let it burn – it destroyed all the scrub brush so the trees and other natural plants could grow again – unless totally trapped by flames, horses and other animals usually are able to out run a fire

  15. LOUIE COCROFT Says:

    LISA, BOY ARE WE FORTUNATE THAT YOU ARE ON OUR SIDE–THE HORSES’ AND BURROS’ SIDE. THAT IS JUST THE KIND OF DATA I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR. WE NEED TO HURL FACTS BACK–THE EMOTION JUST GIVES IT IMPETUS.

  16. Barbara Warner Says:

    Lisa, the rest is going for roundups like the Cattor one costing a couple of million and fencing probably . I read just last week there’s over 700, 000 miles of barb wire strung across OUR public lands. Also they do a few other things like the EA’s. And don’t forget the cattle prods they aren’t supposed to be using and the guns and ammo to shoot some of the horses, gas for the trucks, etc.

    • Karen L. Says:

      Yes, Lisa, the costs of the roundups are ridiculous. Here is a link where the BLM estimates their costs at $7,000 per day for a “crew”. Helicopter flight costs range from $700-$1200 per hour, but I can’t find a specific cost reference on that for the BLM. The Cattoors are supposedly a reasonably priced helicopter roundup company…
      http://www.billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/article_c245a81a-964b-11de-918e-001cc4c002e0.html

    • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

      So, apparently the only actual, physical range management protocols are round-ups. No processes are excercised, at least through the BLM, to reseed, reconstruct, repair any range damage or facillitate habitat restoration. The range is allowed to ‘play it as it lays’, through natural growth or attrition. The only other upgrades are fencing.
      Please correct me if I’m wrong. That still seems like a whole lotta nothing for a whole lotta cash.

  17. Barbara Warner Says:

    Ooops I meant to say the Calico Complex one the Cattoor’s are doing.
    Also I must correct a mistake I made. I said there were pronghorn antelopes running with the wild horses on the GMA video but they were deer. I didn’t look close enough . Eyesight is getting bad in my old age .

  18. Lisa LeBlanc Says:

    I saw a blurb somewhere (boy, talk about age-related failings…) that the BLM admitted this round-up was costing 1.9Mil.

    Hmm. The Department of Defense secures goods and services from various contractors by accepting the lowest bids.

    It would seem each and every round-up season is provided by the Catoors. So I have to wonder about the LEGALITY (Calling all Advocate Legal Eagles!) involved in employing them EXCLUSIVELY; is it possible, if the round-ups absolutely HAVE to continue, that a better, more cost-effective (and hopefully, humanely responsible) company could be found?

    • Karen L. Says:

      Lisa, They don’t employ the Cattoors exclusively—the Cattoors are apparently their favorite, but there is a second go-to group whose name I can’t recall right now. Anyway, here is their list of contractors as of last fall.
      http://amd.nbc.gov/apmd/cwn/Library/3_BLM_WHB_CONTRACTOR_PRICING_EQUIPMENT&PILOT_DATA_eff_11-17-09.pdf

      • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

        Thanks, Karen. I really hate waxing all pure and righteous then fallin’ on my face. You saved me!

      • Karen L. Says:

        Lisa, It’s great that you have a passion for this cause! Finding truth in the details seems important to you. I’m like that myself.

        The other main roundup group is Cook/KD Livestock, although they are not on that list for some obscure reason. They are apparently known for conducting roundups wherein many injuries to the horses occur. They did Sand Springs and Challis if I remember correctly.

    • jan eaker Says:

      Lisa, our money is being spent making the Cattoors and Cooks and others millionaires many times over, nice huh! my understanding is that there is no bidding for the contracts to do the roundups, it is based on availability of the crew, and it seems that whatever the Cattoor’s, etal, quote to the BLM as the cost, that is what they get paid, my teacher’s union is in contract negotiations right now, I wish WE could get that kind of deal!

    • Barbara Steele Says:

      Lisa, I would like to see information about the hay contracts that BLM uses. How much do they pay, what kind of hay and who gets the contracts? And who are the private contractors that run the temporary holding areas and long term holding areas. Names and amounts paid to these people would be good information.
      Just heard that domestic US programs are going to be frozen for 3 years. Does that mean BLM goes back to regular budget since they were given “extra” money this year by Congress to “get it right”(whatever right is?) Need to ask Congress critters just what this means!

      • Lisa LeBlanc Says:

        Barbara,
        I tried; I couldn’t track down any specific contractors for feed but my guess (hope?) is they solicit local growers; Nevada is rotten with alfalfa, and while it’s too damn rich for Captives, it’s probably not all that’s available.
        Most of the larger holding facilities are BLM-run. The Palomino Valley facility states very clearly on the fence who runs it, however, the Fallon facility is privately owned. It’s brand new, so I don’t yet know who the owner is, but I’ll keep at it. I hate a mystery.

  19. morganjservices Says:

    Too bad the reporter traveled all the way out to Nevada to give such a lackluster and superficial story on a issue of National urgency. I thought reporters were hungry for truth. I thought they were hunters of facts, data and real information that leads people to the root cause of a circumstance. The pro horse folks probably gave the reporter a much needed education on Mustangs, Burros and public lands only to have the reporter pick out such trivial sounding soundbytes from Craig and Willie Nelson. The poor mare (shown on video) lying down in misery and distress was not shown any dignity by the reporter. Her story needed to be told. She was a magnificent wild Mustang living free with her family on land alloted to her kind in 1971. Then, a needless roundup in the dead of winter by inhumane, federally funded workers caused her fatal injury. A cruel bullet to the head and the dumping of her carcass was performed to hide the truth of her needless murder by human hands.

    • Barbara Steele Says:

      Morgan, unfortunately reporters today have much less time to put a story together. Our “print” industry is almost dead and TV has tiny stories with sensationalism taking first place. For instance GMA had the story of a “baby born without eyes” up at the same time as the wild horse segment. Tragic and sad on all accounts. I did respond to GMA asking for follow-up on their coverage of the wild horse issue. It was a piece of fluff and I am agree with Lisa that using celeberties might get you a few minutes of fame but then it is all over and onto another piece of fluff. The force of the internet is where news is really being made. I had no idea that there were 30,000 horses in detention until the slaughter issue was brought up the last year and the Cloud roundup this fall gave me a new view of the BLM brutality. I am sure a lot of people have been on a learning curve and thanks to these blogs I am one of them. Let’s all send GMA the YouTube of the down horse and aborting mare. That’s what the media and the Public needs to see.

    • Nora Morbeck Says:

      Here’s part of the problem, as I see it. Reporters at large news organizations are city people, disconnected for the most part from nature. I’m not saying that as a character judgment. It’s just that, seriously, a lot of people I know from big cities don’t understand large animal/wildlife care and issues. Some of these people literally can’t tell the difference between a horse and a donkey. They simply live in a different world than those of us who actually have our hands on horses every single day. My best guess is that these reporters really don’t understand WH&B issues, and frankly, they’re drawn to celebrity-types to provide information, which has mixed results. Reporters probably don’t want to stand around in the frozen mud with a bunch of horse folks in long underwear and flannel. 🙂

      Think of Salazar’s plan to re-locate wild horses to preserves in the East and Midwest. Sounds great … if you don’t know anything about wild horses, their eating and movement habits. Sounds great … if you don’t know anything about the tainted history of the WH&B program. So, a lot of people just don’t understand what the big fuss is about.

      Lots of education is needed. Write to these reporters and suggest that they look a little deeper.

      • Kathleen Says:

        Nora, you are definitely correct in that the average city folk doesn’t really have a clue. Education is needed because what they hear from us doesn’t make sense to them. Especially after being told “all the right things” by BLM (we spend millions taking care of these wild horses for their own good… blah, blah, blah).

  20. Sandra Miller Says:

    Have you read the article about the wild horses and burros on the web site of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)? All things considered, I think it is a good article. Go to
    http://hsus.typepad.com/wayne/2009/11/wild-horses.html

    I left the following comment for Mr. Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO of HSUS. Desperate times require desperate measures!

    Is there no way the Humane Society of the United States can directly intervene and stop the massive roundups of our wild horses and burros? The Cloud Foundation reported 1/29/10 at least 22 horses dead (and this number does not include the foals) and 1300 horses in holding at the Fallon Facility, where 15-20 mares have miscarried/spontaneously aborted. We must have an immediate end to this cruelty! Our wild horses and burros are like children in the hands of abusive parents, but there appears to be no law enforcement agency with power to intervene! Is our federal government above its own laws? I urge you, Mr.Pacelle, to find some legal way to directly intervene. If an individual in our country were treating his animals this way, he would be reported, investigated, stopped, and even prosecuted by local humane society authorities, as we often see on the “Animal Cops” programs on “Animal Planet”. Yet, we citizens, who have bombarded our elected representatives with letters about this issue to no avail, must stand helplessly by while these wild horses and burros, who have a legal right to be on their ranges, are terrorized and chased by helicopters, the foals run into the ground with multiple sloughs leading to being euthanized, and then trucked off to permanent holding pens. I urge you to find some way to stop this travesty! Are we living in some primitive culture with no legal recourse to humane treatment for these animals? Do we no longer respect the rule of law, the 1971 Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act? I implore you to do something immediately for our beleaguered wild horses and burros!

    • Laura Evans Says:

      That was a really good article. If we could get that point across the battle would be half over. The fact that the BLM rounds them up and removes them at such a cost when, if they were really starving, it would be much cheaper to leave them there and supplement them on the range with hay says something in itself.

    • Karen L. Says:

      I wrote to Mr. Pacelle last week, saying that it was time for the HSUS to do something major to stop the roundups. I asked them to start TV ads or put up billboards. The average advocate just doesn’t have enough punch.

  21. gale e muellenhoff Says:

    This is what I sent on to Good Morning America along with a question for Obama on his YouTube site last night…

    Firstly, a very big thank you to both Good Morning America and Madeline Pickens for getting this out and giving it the attention that will hopefully raise some questions as the what the BLM is really doing. Managed extermination is a term that has been attached to how the BLM is managing yours and my tax dollars with respect to their methods of what they call sustainability of the land and what the horses are doing to it….The BLM has been presented with an abundance of statistics and vivid photographs of where their claims/statements would not be justified.- whether you have a compassion for animals or whether you do not care, the American Public is losing a piece of history through shear brutal, horrific, expensive, inhumane actions by one of our own branches of government. Perhaps in time someone who has some political clout and does not have any political favors due to them will make a difference and issue a moratorium before the horses have become history.

  22. Sandra Miller Says:

    Here is another letter I wrote to my local “South Bend (Indiana)Tribune”. It has been accepted but not yet published in the “Voice of the People” column. How do you explain this complicated issue in 200 words or less? I used an Internet research approach, and that is obviously acceptable to the “Tribune”. A few years ago our local humane society took the courageous and highly controversial (in our area) step of becoming a no-kill adoption center. I found out about it by accident (having avoided the humane society all my life because they kill animals), and immediately became a member. I asked the “Tribune” to do an article about this marvelous development, some kind of a well kept secret! They did so, a seven day series. I am hoping the “Tribune” will use my recommended sources and do a feature article on the wild horses and burros. Don’t forget how little the average American citizens knows about this issue! Here is my letter:

    With public protests ongoing from San Francisco to Boston and points in between, I have yet to read a word in the “Tribune” about our U. S. Bureau of Land Management’s removal of our wild horses and burros from our U. S. Public Lands. Concerned citizens should research this matter on the Internet. The wild horses and burros are ours, and they should legally reside on millions of acres Congress set aside for them on our Public Lands in 1971 (google 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act). The organization In Defense of Animals (IDA) has launched a lawsuit against the BLM on behalf of our wild horses and burros, with noted wildlife biologist, Craig Downer, and author Terri Farley as plaintiffs (google In Defense of Animals lawsuit against the BLM). The Cloud Foundation is an excellent source of information (go to thecloudfoundation.org), particularly their Blog. Read the report by Humane Observer, Elyse Gardner, of the roundup in the Calico Mountain Complex in northern Nevada 1/16/10 (go to humaneobserver.blogspot.com/). Protest these illegal actions to our U. S. elected representatives, our President, the BLM, and the U.S. Department of the Interior headed by Ken Salazar. Help save our wild horses and burros from extinction!

  23. sandra longley Says:

    Thank you for all the information here…I have been bloging as many sites as I can find since watching the video on GMA.I have e-mailed senator Harry Reid-who in the past has been a friend to legislation involving the wild horses in his state..and could be critical when R.O.M.E. comes up..please contact him and ask for his support..I feel he is our best chance at getting some help in washington.. I believe he is under enourmous political pressure in his home state of Nevada, so tell him we support him if he will support the horses. He has alot of ranchers there who are in favor of moving the horses out…he needs our help..I am defending the horses over at the ABC blogs as gowestyoungman111…join in!!!

  24. jan Says:

    read the first post on gma – maybe someone can contact gma to have sheryl crow on there with her video and show clips of it – that would set abc right

  25. jan Says:

    some of those reporters work on assignment for a paper or magazine and their company assigns them to do a report on such and such so if you have no knowledge about the subject you have to do a report on, how good is it going to be? are you going to do reserach before you go or just go and do report – i think you need a reporter from a horse magazine like steve long at horseback magazine or george knapp at that tv station in nevada – someone who knows horses and knows the subject

  26. jan Says:

    i posted to hsus – copied it and waiting for aol to send it – slow today – basically told him i have been emailing the hsus and aspca about our wild horses and seems like they are not doing much and then someone told me its the hsus who is giving the mares the shot to make temporarily infertile so wondered if the blm was paying for that shot or how that worked – did not ask him that but just curious as to why the hsus would provide the shot to render mares infertile for the govt – can see them doing it for over population of cats and dogs but wild horses when there are hardly any left – that would be a good thing to look into – if blm is giving money to hsus then they cant say too much about the roundups

  27. jan Says:

    in regards to cloud foundation – everyone i write to or talk to about the horses – i give them the link for cloud foundation because we know we can find the truth on there and see what the latest efforts are being made to save the horses and the atroticies done to the horses by the blm

  28. jan Says:

    i watched that state of the union speech – praying and hoping among all the junk he talked about – that somewhere he would announce there would be no more roundups of the horses and the blm would be scaled back in regard to the horses captured and many would be set free – but he never said a word

  29. sandra longley Says:

    Thank you Mr. President for taking the time to read this. I know you are very busy with all the problems our country is dealing with at this time, My fear is that this problem is one you may not have been informed of…It has to do with the policy your dept. of the Interior has implemented and being carried out by the BLM..The inhumane roundup of our wild mustangs in the west where I live, the recent deaths of 26 mares and foals at the fallon Nevada facility..and the recent conviction in Nebraska of the man who ran the 3 strikes ranch-of the starvation and death of 176 horses…placed there by the BLM..It is a disgrace to our country that WE allowed that to happen, This is the current policy that is being pursued by the department of the interior, to move the wild horses out of their native environment, into the ranches back east-at a huge cost to the taxpayer,and to the detriment to the horses and our heritage. We westerners know what is going on here..the wild horses here are in good condition as could be seen on the video on good morning america-there were and are not starving as the BLM and Interior claim..I and many others are signing petions, e-mailing our elected officials and blogging the internet to try and stop this cruel, wasteful and unnecesary treatment..This is not the change I voted for..this is what I might have expected out of a republican administration. I would like to point out I am not a card carrying peta member or a wild liberal, I am an independant who has always supported democratic policys, and worked hard and donated to the democratic cause..I am not asking for anything for myself-but I am asking for the horses-who have no voice. I would be willing to pay more taxes if it would help. Please put a moratorium on this before it is too late, and many more die. thank you sandra longley

    Geez, the last time I wrote a letter like this..it was to Santa Claus!!!! Busy day for me, I have become a professional BEGGAR

  30. Sandra Miller Says:

    Jan, in regard to your question about why HSUS would provide the shot to render mares infertile for the government, somewhere along the way I saw a video about HSUS providing the same shots for the bison on Catalina Island so that they would not overpopulate and have to be slaughtered. Now, in looking at some of the statistics Lisa provided above, which show that the BLM thinks one horse every 1200 acres is excessive, I guess HSUS is providing the shots for the same reason – to seriously depress the wild horse and burro population so they won’t have to be slaughtered. As you can see, this has nothing to do with the ranges the wild horses and burros were given under the 1971 WFRHB Act, but has everything to do with what wild horse and burro presence the DOI/BLM wants on the Public Lands (not much!).

  31. sandra longley Says:

    This past year we have prioritized identifying public lands’ suitability for the large-scale production of renewable energy, both from an environmental and resource perspective. Last June, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and I announced the identification of 1,000 square miles, including 24 tracts of Bureau of Land Management-administered land, in the West as Solar Energy Study Areas. These Study Areas alone have the potential to generate nearly 100,000 megawatts of solar electricity, enough to power millions of American homes.

    Along with the Department of Energywe are preparing a Solar Energy Development Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, which will identify which solar energy projects on Southwestern public lands seem to have the highest potential for utility-scale energy development. So far the BLM has identified approximately 23 million acres with solar energy potential. In the Southwest we have also announced the “fast-tracking” of 34 promising renewable energy projects, which could potentially be cleared for approval by December 2010. This would make them eligible for economic stimulus funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. We have placed fourteen solar energy projects on the fast track, located in three states and using different solar energy technologies including solar engine, parabolic trough, and power tower. All are currently undergoing detailed environmental impact assessment, and if approved, could produce 5,000-6,000 megawatts of new capacity and tens of thousands of jobs. In California, Governor Schwarzenegger and I signed a Memo of Understanding to expedite the siting, reviewing, approving and permitting of renewable energy projects on public lands in California.

    We are redoubling our efforts to evaluate and approve existing applications for solar energy projects. The BLM is currently processing approximately 128 applications for utility-scale solar projects that involve around 77,000 megawatts and 1.2 million acres of public land. We believe that of the solar projects currently proposed in California, Arizona, and New Mexico over 5,750megawatts of new capacity could be permitted for construction by the end of this year. The development of all these projects has the potential to power roughly 1.4 million homes.

    Solar and other renewable energy resources are often located in remote areas, and will require new transmission capacity to bring this clean energy to population centers. The Department has already identified and designated more than 5,000 miles of transmission corridors on federal lands. We are processing more than 30 applications for major transmission corridor right-of-ways, with 7 applications in Idaho, California and Nevada that could potentially “fast track” the permitting of over 1,000 transmission miles this year. Moreover, nine federal agencies including the Department have signed a Memorandum of Understanding committed to coordinating the expedition of siting and permitting electric transmission projects on federal lands.

    this is taken from the DOI page…note the words” fast track” for dec, 2010..which is why so many horses have to be removed at once, they have already implemented the leases, and if it is for solar panels-there-is no way around them for the horses.that land will have to be fenced off. We need to find out about the leases given on the HMAs, and the real reason behind the removal of so many so fast-we won’t have wild horses to see, but miles of solar panels…then lets see if the sierra club supports the removal of the horses…we need to expose what is really going on here..they want to tear up the habitat and without the horses there -it eliminates a huge group of vocal protesters…so they are pushing it thru now and making it a done deal-horses are back east or dead-when the equipment breaks ground!

    • morganjservices Says:

      Sandra:

      You KNOW the facts well. I have been screaming, to anyone who will listen, about these facts since last year. I was even a ‘guest’ on a California internet radio show (station KOWS). The only data I have been missing is your point on leases. You have filled in another piece of the puzzle for me.

      Thanks Sandra for taking all the time and effort to relay the facts on this blog. We must, absolutely must, focus on the root cause of American Mustang/Burro, public land, national park and wildlife annihilation.

    • Karen L. Says:

      Yes, all of this is true. They are doing this because they CAN under the Federal Land Policy Act of 1976. They believe it trumps the Wild Horse and Burro Act of 1971. Please read attorney Laura Allen’s articles at the Animal Law Coalition site. Current litigation for the horses is hopefully going to be a turning point.
      http://www.animallawcoalition.com/horse-slaughter/article/1081

  32. sandra longley Says:

    I am going to find out the requirements to use the “Freedom of Information act” to see if I can ferret out any information on those leases..I smell a rat, and i think we have been sidetracked into the grazing rights argument with cattlemen..I think-the DOI decided they didn’t have the time to go thru a court battle over R.O.M.E., and the fastest way to get to those leases was to remove the horses, as many, and as fast as they could…Which explains this sudden haste and the numbers being eliminated from the land…It was a question I kept coming back to in my mind…I have worked for a large windmill farm in eastern oregon, and know a bit about the ins and outs..Environmentalists are a huge headache to that industry. I support green energy and the jobs it brings…but this is not transparentcy, it requires compramise. This is what breeds distrust in our government…Manipulation of the facts

  33. LOUIE COCROFT Says:

    SANDRA, YOU ARE PROBABLY ONTO SOMETHING. DON’T FORGET THAT THEY CAN ALSO DO LAND SWAPS.

  34. gale e muellenhoff Says:

    Yeah Sandra – yes there is a big time manipulation of facts here and I sincerely believe that haste for removing the horses is more than the starving horses and the so-called sustainability of the land.

    If I can help you out please let me know.

  35. Sandra Miller Says:

    Remember, the wild horses and burros are on their ranges as assigned by the 1971 WFRH&B Act. That law has not been rescinded, nor has any new law been passed by Congress which would cancel it out. It doesn’t matter what the novel emergency of the moment happens to be, wind turbines, natural gas lines, bushels of money from cattle ranchers to expand cattle grazing, etc. – the law stands until it is eliminated or changed by Congress. The President is not above the law, which he knows well. Those who act as if they ARE above the law are the not very smart “underlings” at the DOI/BLM. You cannot have a modern, organized country if there is not respect for established law and legal procedures – something the President, a lawyer and a teacher of Constitutional law, also knows well. Don’t be spooked by all these revelations – but be VERY concerned that we cannot think of something to do TODAY to stop the rounding up of the horses and burros right now. It does not matter what the argument, the horses have prior claim to their land, and we should never allow that to be changed. We do not have to trash our Public Lands in the name of “clean energy initiatives” or whatever to develop clean energy. There is plenty of private land available for that development. It just is not as attractive, though, as leasing land at low rates and enjoying all those marvelous subsidies provided by our federal government (that is, the taxpayers) on our Public Lands. My distress is caused by the short term situation – in the end I am CONFIDENT that we will prevail in court, but at what cost to our wild horses and burros before that happens? THAT is the sickening problem. We just have to continue doing all we are doing, educating the public, writing to our representatives, in short, continuing to become a formidable political force! The wild horses and burros, fortunately, because of the 1971 law, are like huge boulders in the stream of time and events – they cannot be moved (or removed) – they will have to be accommodated and worked around, as long as we are here to “make it so”.

  36. Karen L. Says:

    For those of us who have spoken about the need for the HSUS to come out more forcefully for the horses, Horseback Magazine has an interview with Wayne Pacelle posted today. He states that they are exerting pressure, have focused their efforts directly at Bob Abbey most recently, and have HIRED an economist to draw up a plan to show the BLM the error of their roundup ways. He says their (the BLM’s) behaviors are not following the facts as presented. He acknowledges that the HSUS has been receiving complaints/requests for action from the public on behalf of the horses.

    This actually causes me to feel a tiny bit hopeful. Read about it here.
    http://www.horsebackmagazine.com/

  37. Sandra Miller Says:

    Thanks, Karen L., for that information! I’ll send that link to everyone on my list so they can read the article. Elyse Gardner, who does such a wonderful job as Humane Observer, could probably use a lot more help with that kind of work. Send more Humane Officers out to the roundup sites! More eyes, more complaints, more inspections, more transparency = more PROTECTION for our wild horses and burros! I just renewed my membership in both HSUS and also their legislative branch. I figured if I was going to expect them to do MORE, I should be sure to keep up my commitment to THEM! This must be why we have the expression, “It’s always darkest before the dawn!” I too feel a tiny bit hopeful! I have referred to the BLM since August as THE TANK. It did not seem to matter what anyone said or did, THE TANK just kept rolling along with it pre-programmed agenda. Truth to tell, though, I think we are causing some dings and dents and one of these days we may find a way to get THE TANK stopped altogether!

    • Karen L. Says:

      You’re welcome, Sandra! I could almost feel Mr. Pacelle’s resolve; quiet, but steadfast. It gave me comfort.

  38. Sandra Miller Says:

    Karen L., I have returned to Laura Allen’s (bless her!) article on the Animal Law Coalition site, as you have recommended in your comment. Here is a quote from that long article:

    “The Federal Land Policy Management Act requires management of public lands under concepts of multiple use and sustained yield. 43 U.S.C. §§ 1701, et seq. But the multiple use concept does not trump the WFRHBA protections for wild horses. In fact, the statute makes clear that the protections under WFRHBA take precedence. FLPMA, 43 U.S.C. § 1732 (a) Yet, despite this, BLM has issued a regulation that provides “[w]ild horses and burros shall be considered comparably with other resource values in the formulation of land use plans.” 43 C.F.R. §4700.0-6(b).”

    What we have here, I think, is just another rewriting of WFRHBA by the BLM. Someone should gather up (you see, we can conduct “gathers”, too!) all the regulations the BLM has written up to apply to the WFRHBA and publish it as the “BLM’s WFRHBA” – and then return it to Congress and ask them if this document at all resembles the original law passed by them? One thing that Congress does not like is to have its powers stepped on this way! We, the people should not like it, either, because it totally subverts our US Constitution, which provides for governance by the citizens of this country through their elected representatives in Congress. So, you are absolutely right, in my opinion, to say, “Current litigation for the horses is hopefully going to be a turning point.” Only by returning to court can we stop this process of total erosion of the WFRHBA as written by the new regulations of the DOI/BLM.

    We should all ask ourselves how this happened over an almost 40 year period. To me, this is exactly what occurs when citizens do not involve themselves in the political process and furnish CONSTANT oversight of our federal government! Oversight is a good way to keep “old law” current! We are all doing exactly as our founding fathers wished! I am sorry to have to have lived so long before I discovered this important truth – but excited to be part of the democratic process where my opinion – and yours – and yours – makes such a great difference in the direction charted for our country!

    • Karen L. Says:

      Yes, Sandra, Ms. Allen really understands the federal statutes and how the BLM has skewed them for their own purposes. I believe that Wm. Spriggs has that knowledge as well, and is confronting the BLM’s DOJ attorneys in court in a way they’ve not encountered before this time.

  39. sandra longley Says:

    By Robert WINKLER
    The Desert Independent

    February 5, 2010

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC plans to file a lawsuit on Monday, February 8, to keep the Bureau of Land Management from implementing its Eagle Herd Management Area Wild Horse Capture Plan (DOI-BLM-NV-L020-2009-0051-EA), currently scheduled to begin this month. The plan proposes to capture 495 wild horses by using helicopters to indiscriminately gather the horses – whether they are old, sick or lame – into short term holding pens.

    According to Bill Spriggs, co-chair of Buchanan’s Government Contracts Practice and lead attorney in this case, “the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed plan fails to comply with the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.” This is the second lawsuit Spriggs has filed within the past three months that seeks to enjoin the inhumane roundup of wild horses.

    Spriggs adds, “in regard to the first lawsuit (see In Defense of Animals vs. Dept. of Interior), which is exactly the same as this one, the December 23, 2009 opinion, rendered by Judge Paul L. Friedman of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, supports our claim that the relocation of horses for indefinite holding periods violates the plain language of Section 1339.” He further cites the opinion, stating that the roundups violate the ‘minimal feasible level’ of management language in Section 1333(a). He adds that “the opinion also rejects the defendants’ argument that Congress has authorized long term holding facilities through the appropriations process.” Judge Friedman has set a court date for April 30 to hear the case, with a final opinion by May 26, to hear the case.

  40. Sandra Miller Says:

    Excellent news! There is more interesting information about this on the web site of In Defense of Animals.

  41. Amy Coulter Says:

    Could someone end this string and begin another…this stopped being about the GMA piece a long time ago, and it’s getting confusing. Since the conversation has become about the lawsuit pending, perhaps we should post under that? I don’t want to miss any of your posts!

    • Karen L. Says:

      Yes, maybe TCF will start a topic on the Eagle lawsuit. I’ve also posted on this under the Petaluma thread.

  42. Sandra Miller Says:

    I just keep being called back to this site by follow up comments, but if TCF posts something about the Eagle lawsuit, which will be filed Monday, February 8, we can continue there.

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