BLM, USFWS counting wild horses in NV, OR

By SCOTT SONNER Associated Press Writer
Posted: 06/21/2010 01:47:01 PM PDT -copyright AP

RENO, Nev.—Federal land managers launched an effort Monday to update their count of wild horses roaming parts of northwest Nevada and southwest Oregon, garnering rare praise from horse protection advocates.
The BLM and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are joining forces this week to conduct the aerial census over about 4 million acres of federal land, primarily around the Sheldon and Hart Mountain National Wildlife Refuges near the Nevada-Oregon line.
Wild horse advocates who have criticized the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s roundup of the mustangs are urging the agency to suspend all gathers until the new census is complete.
“This is a positive step,” said Makendra Silverman of the Cloud Foundation, a Colorado-based group that is among those challenging mustang roundups in court.
But she said an independent census should be conducted to address their concerns that BLM overestimates the number of horses on the range to justify the roundups aimed at reducing the herds’ population.
“The BLM readily admits to having no accurate national census of wild horses and burros living on our Western public lands and yet continues with plans to round up nearly 12,000 this fiscal year,” she said. “That is irresponsible.”
The agency estimates more than 38,000 horses and burros roam the range in 10 Western states, with roughly half in Nevada.
The BLM maintains the roundups are necessary because an overpopulation of horses is harming native
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wildlife and the range, and threatening the mustangs with starvation. It believes the number that can be supported on the range is about 26,600.
Ron Wenker, BLM state director for Nevada, said the effort to update the population count with the help of an airplane is intended to utilize “improved population and survey methodology” in an area that has shown shifts in both horse numbers and distribution.
“Past population surveys and management projects by BLM and the USFWS within the survey area have shown that animals may move between a number of BLM herd management areas” and across the two wildlife refuges, Wenker said.
“This joint effort will produce a base line count and distribution for the entire area as a whole,” he said, adding that accurate population surveys are challenging because of the ruggedness of the terrain and vegetation cover.
“We are planning to return in the fall for a second survey, where we will see how and where the herds moved and how that affects population counts within the individual areas,” he said.

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15 Responses to “BLM, USFWS counting wild horses in NV, OR”

  1. Breaking News: Wild Horse Advocate Requests FBI Investigation « Straight from the Horse's Heart Says:

    […] BLM, USFWS counting wild horses in NV, OR (thecloudfoundation.wordpress.com) […]

  2. Linda Says:

    Many people will say, “Good, the BLM is doing their job.” Meanwhile they continue their bloody business behind closed doors.

  3. Jo De George Says:

    The damage the BLM has leveled on our wild horse herds can never be rectified. This is all another smoke screen. Business as usual with the BLM. Destroying herds of beautiful wild horse an charging the tax payers.

  4. sandra longley Says:

    Watch them push some horses over into the Calico complex to try and get their number of 600..seriously- someone keep an eye on what is going on over there..do we have people in that area who can monitor suspicious activity..I had a disagreemnet back in feb. with dr. Kane over the subject of how many horses remained on the calico..he told me they did a fly over after the roundup was completed..and I told him I was familiar with their protocols for doing counts and they would not have had the time to conduct them in that manner.

  5. sandra longley Says:

    My understanding is that Laura was told she would be involved in this count as the leader of herd watch..my understanding now, is that she is not included…what does that say to you?? There is more funny business going on..How many “feel good momments” have to come and go before we do more than ‘protest” their activities?

  6. Barbara Steele Says:

    Maybe the Advocates should commission a drone to do a count.
    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb5261/is_4_23/ai_n29356991/

    • Roxy Says:

      Actually that is an excellent idea! Keep posting that. M. Pickens could afford that for sure. And a nice toy for hubbie!

  7. Margaret Says:

    EXCUSE THE INTERRUPTION PLEASE.
    I’ve just been made aware of a cowboy in Montana who adopted a mustang two weeks ago and is trying to sell him at a canner auction. Happily the brand inspector people wouldn’t take the horse.

    What happened to the title??? I thought you had to hang onto the horse for one year to avoid this exact situation. Not sure if this guy has the title or not.

    How in the world do we stop this???? This cowboy bought the horse and turns around and tries to sell it for meat. How can we make the BLM more aware of situations like this? That guy should be banned from all WH&B adoptions–PERIOD.

  8. Margaret Says:

    Okay bit of a panic there. Turns out the cowboy had the horse for over a year. The title is in the process of being transferred.

    Mustang is safe. Owner recently lost his property and didn’t feel he had any other options. This is exactly what Ranch2Ring is all about. Educating people and helping them see other options.

    So please ignore my interruption.

  9. Top U.S. Law Firm Threatens Suit over BLM Wild Horse Roundup in California « Straight from the Horse's Heart Says:

    […] BLM, USFWS counting wild horses in NV, OR (thecloudfoundation.wordpress.com) […]

  10. Marilyn Wargo Says:

    If we have as few horses as some people have estimated; 16,000 in the wild… then what happens this summer will be stripping our herds from their ranges and the beginning of the end of wild horses as they have been for the entire history of their reintroduction. This is their land and we are the people who gave them a great law that was gutted by their overseers and opponents.

    Please fight hard this summer and give all you can from your hearts and donate what you can to get people in the field to report to the world what we are losing… mar

  11. Roxy Says:

    What praise?

    Is that true?

    I’ve not read any.

    PS Cross post everywhere (since more recent blogs seem to be at the bottom, I reposted my blog as a rply to the oldest entry at the top – saw lots of you there!):

    CNN poll today” Would you eat horse meat?
    Looks like the SS proslaughter PR machine is up and running, however lamely.
    Please take the poll to outnumber her fans that say they would eat horsemeat.
    http://eatocracy.cnn.com/2010/06/22/lunchtime-poll-horse-meat/

    • Roxy Says:

      Hello everyone – we have come from behind and have taken over the lead against the pro wild horse slaughter group in just 2 days!

      Keep cross posting this!

  12. sandra longley Says:

    By the end of summer we will be able to list the Wild Horses of America on the endangered species list..Maybe we should start the petitioning of congress now for that eventuality…be careful BLM you are going to get more than you wished for…that will tie your hands on SOOOOO many levels….

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