Shannon Windle of Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., Nov 12)

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WEDNESDAY, Nov. 12, 2014

6:30 pm PST … 7:30 pm MST … 8:30 pm CST … 9:30 pm EST

Listen Live Here!

Call in # 917-388-4520

This will be a 1 hour show. Please call in with questions any time during the show.

The shows will be archived, so you can listen anytime.

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Our guest tonight is Shannon Windle, President of the Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund in Reno, Nevada.

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Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund is an all-volunteer registered 501( c )3 non-profit organization to protect and preserve the Wild Horses that settle in the foothills surrounding Hidden Valley during the winter months.  For over 20 years, volunteers have monitored herd health, grazing availability, provided attention to sick and injured horses and foals, aided in state run adoption processes, and installed and mended fencing and cattle guards.  Other volunteers are involved in ensuring federal and state departments are working within the statutes that provide protection and care for the Wild Horses.

This group is currently trying to find adopters for Virginia Range Horses before the horses are sent to auction, where they could potentially be purchased by “kill buyers” and sent to slaughter.  Please visit the adoption link for Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund: www.wildhorseadoption.org

This radio show is hosted by Debbie Coffey, Vice-President & Director of Wild Horse Affairs at Wild Horse Freedom Federation. Continue reading

Wild Horses & Burros: A Lesson in Equine Perfection

Article by Pete Ramey ~ Forward by R.T. Fitch

“‘Feel Good Sunday’ brings us to a link that was submitted by our dear friend and contributor, Grandma Gregg.  This is an older story, 2005, but it’s message resonates in our hearts and souls perhaps even stronger today than it did when it was written in and in keeping with the ‘feel good’ of the day I will not beleaguer why that is so.  As I travel I did not have the time to make contact with Pete Ramey so as to obtain his permission to publish this story in it’s entirety so it is introduced, here, with links to his site to finish the rest of this very interesting tale.  But when it all comes down to it we are kindred spirits as like Pete, I share the emotion and enlightenment that is captured in the highlighted sentence below.  Keep the faith.” ~ R.T.


“…after two minutes with the wild ones, I knew that I had never seen a true horse”

Pete and Ivy Ramey

After all these years, my family and I made our first trip to see the wild horses of the western United States. My work has been dramatically influenced and inspired by the study of these horses and their hooves. The reason I waited so long to go there and see for myself, was I thought that by studying the works of others I had picked up most of the information I needed.

I was first, and most influenced by the work of Jaime Jackson. He paved the way for an overwhelming number of us to learn how to forge healthy bare hooves and dramatically improve the health and performance of domestic horses. With this came the ability to unlock the mysteries of founder, navicular syndrome, white line disease, and hoof wall cracks. I later studied the wild horse research of Gene Ovnicek and Dr. Robert Bowker. I picked up more information from their work, and valuable confirmation of what I had already learned from Jaime.

So, I walked into wild horse country thinking that I was on a tourist trip; confirming what I already knew. I could not have been more blind. I could not have been more wrong. They were much, much more than I had ever imagined. What I write here, will probably sound very similar to what my predecessors have written. I don’t know if anyone’s words can get the point across to the world, but I have to try. I thought I was ready, but what I saw literally blew me away. I have worked on thousands of horses, all over the world. I spent six years of my life in the saddle from daylight till dark. I’ve had the privilege of working on some of the finest horses, for the finest horsemen in the world. Understand that after two minutes with the wild ones, I knew that I had never seen a true horse. I literally had no idea of their potential…(CONTINUED)

Click (HERE) to read the story in it’s entirety

The BLM’s Whitewash of the Reveille Roundup

by Debbie Coffey    Copyright 2014      All Rights Reserved.

The BLM’s Tonopah Field Office in Nevada claimed there were 168 wild horses, and there was a “need” to do a roundup (and waste taxpayer dollars) since there were 30 wild horses over the Appropriate Management Level (AML).  But lets look closely at this slight of hand.

The BLM rounded up 120 wild horses, gave PZP fertility control to 50, which they were to return, but by removing 70, left only 98 wild horses on the Reveille HMA, making it a non viable herd.  (And, they gave PZP to 50 out of that 98!)

Now, lets look at the numbers of LIVESTOCK on the Reveille HMA:

(These livestock numbers are from the BLM's Rangeland Administration System)

(These livestock numbers are from the BLM’s Rangeland Administration System)

Click on image for enhanced view

The 105,474 acre Reveille HMA is WITHIN the Reveille GRAZING allotment, which is 650,250 acres.  There is only one permittee, and it is half owned by FALLINI and half owned by the H. FALLINI LIVING TRUST.  You can read an article about them HERE.
The BLM allows this grazing allotment to graze 2,440 cattle for 6 months out of the year (compared to 98 wild horses now) but was fretting about 30 wild horses over the AML?

Horses that graze on the Reveille Herd Management (HMA) area were some of “Wild Horse Annie’s” favorites, according to the BLM’s announcement of their scheduled roundup which started on Nov. 3.  The historical significance of this herd did not stop the BLM from rounding them up.

So when you now read about the adoptions or get sidetracked about the handling of the horses during the roundup, don’t forget the big picture of what really happened here.

Don’t forget that the BLM is reducing yet another wild horse herd population to a level that is no longer genetically viable.  Currently 70% of the wild horse herds in the United States are being “managed” by the BLM at a level below levels required  (150-200 reproducing wild horses) to maintain the genetic viability of the herd.

Don’t forget that the BLM is managing the wild horses and burros to extinction.

Don’t forget the BLM is doing little to reduce or suspend livestock grazing on public lands.

The BLM is duping the public and then trying to whitewash it with PR.

 

Ginger Kathrens on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., Nov. 5th)

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WEDNESDAY, Nov. 5, 2014

6:00 pm PST … 7:00 pm MST … 8:00 pm CST … 9:00 pm EST

Listen Live (Here!)

Call in # 917-388-4520

This is a 2 hour show. Please call in with questions during the 2nd hour of the show.

The shows will be archived, so you can listen anytime.

_____________________________________________

Our guest is GINGER KATHRENS, the Founder and Executive Director of The Cloud Foundation, who has been described as “the Jane Goodall of wild horses.”  Ginger will discuss saving all the Mustangs and wild burros in the West, and give us an update on Cloud and his family.

Ginger Kathrens is an Emmy Award-winning producer, cinematographer, writer and editor as well as an award-winning author.  Her documentary film-making trips have taken her to Africa, Asia, Europe, Central and South America and all over the U.S.

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 Kathrens filmed and produced the acclaimed Cloud: Wild Stallion of the Rockies and Cloud’s Legacy: The Wild Stallion Returns for WNET’s Nature series on PBS, and Cloud: Challenge of The Stallions.  Five years in the making, it is Kathrens’ next chapter in the life of the charismatic wild stallion she has documented since his birth in May of 1995.  Her documentation of Cloud represents the only continuing chronicle of a wild animal from birth in our hemisphere.

Kathrens was the co-producer and cinematographer of the two-hour Discovery Channel special, Spirits of the Rainforest, which won two Emmy Awards including one for Best Documentary.  Additional projects for Discovery included The Ultimate Guide: Horses and The Ultimate Guide: Dogs.  Kathrens also wrote, edited, and produced over two dozen segments of the Wild America series for PBS, and has filmed for National Geographic, Animal Planet and the BBC.

This radio show is hosted by Debbie Coffey, Vice-President & Director of Wild Horse Affairs at Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

Co-hosting this week will be R.T. Fitch, President and Co-founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

Continue reading

Robert Redford: Protect our Wild Horses & Burros

Open Letter from Robert Redford as published in USA Today

Wild horse populations vary between 32,000 and 50,000 while livestock grazing allocations accommodate numbers in the millions. Yes, in the millions.

The Horse WhispererHorses and I have had a shared existence, personal and professional, for as long as I can remember. And while I carry a strong passion for all horses, my tenacious support for the preservation of habitat for wildlife and the American mustangs derives from their symbolic representation of our national heritage and freedom.

Any infringement on their legally protected right to live freely is an assault on America’s principles. The varied and subjective interpretation of laws intended to protect these animals on our public lands, continues to leave wild horses under attack.

Recent “stand-offs” between ranchers and the federal government are reminiscent of old westerns. But this American tragedy does not have a hero riding in to save the day, and wild horses have become the victim in the controversies over our public land resources.

In 1971, as a result of concern for America’s dwindling wild horse populations, the US Congress passed the Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act. . The Act mandated that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), protect free roaming wild horses and burros, under a multiple use management policy, on designated areas of our public lands.

The BLM manages 245 million acres of our public lands, with livestock grazing permits on 155 million acres. Wild horses are designated to share a mere 26.9 million acres. That means only 17% of BLM-managed public land are made available to wild horses. Wild horse populationsvary between 32,000 and 50,000 while livestock grazing allocations accommodate numbers in the millions. Yes, in the millions.

Advocates are only asking that the horses be treated fairly. Wild horses are consistently targeted as the primary cause of negative impact to grazing lands resulting from decades of propaganda that ignores math, science and solutions that can be implemented today.

Ranchers hold nearly 18,000 grazing lease permits on BLM land alone.  Grazing costson BLM land goes for $1.35 per cow and calf pair, well below the market rate of $16. This price disparity derived from BLM’s current permit policy establishes an uneven playing field on grazing economies. Understandably ranchers have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo.

Although less than 3% of America’s beef is produced on federal land, this subsidized grazing program costs the taxpayer more than $123 million dollars a year, and more than $500 million when indirect costs are accounted for.

The long-term economic success of public lands lies in maintaining a bio diverse ecosystem within its boundaries. However, understanding the need for a preservation balance in thriving agricultural communities often becomes sidelined.

The BLM needs to comply with its original “multiple use” principle in managing wild horses and burros. In light of the inequitable share of livestock on BLM land, the on going persecution of wild horses and those that value them is unacceptable and threatens the very spirit of the American West.  I urge Congress to stand up for much needed reform of the BLM’s wild horse and burro program and livestock grazing on federal lands.

Now is not the time to repudiate environmental balance, but rather it is the time for all of us to work together – politician, advocate, rancher, scientist, and citizen. Only by doing this will the United States move forward and be a leader in environmental issues and ensure sustainability to our delicate ecosystem.

The BLM says NO photos allowed of Wyoming Checkerboard horses at Canon City wild horse adoption on November 7

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A beautiful family near Eversole Ranch days before being removed

by Carol Walker, Director of Field Documentation, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

As many of you know, I have spent the past 10 years photographing the wild horses in Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek and Great Divide Basin, and I also spent many days during the Wyoming Checkerboard Roundup witnessing and photographing from very far away as 1263 wild horses lost their freedom and their families from these three herd areas.

The public was prevented from any close views of the traps or the horses during the roundups, usually being kept from 2 – 3 miles from the trap, and even when were allowed to go to the temporary holding at the end of the day, we were kept well back and could barely see the horses through the plastic mesh.

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My very distant view at the roundup

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The mesh blocking the view of the horses at temporary holding

On one day, some of the mesh was down and I actually got a decent view of the mares.  On posting these photos I immediately had someone interested in adopting two of the mares in the photographs.

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The mares through a gap in the fence at temporary holding

On returning home from the last day of the roundup, I immediately emailed the BLM at the Canon City, Colorado facility to request to attend the first adoption where the public would be allowed to see the horses removed during the Checkerboard Roundup.  I was very happy to hear that at least half of the horses removed had been sent to Canon City as I believe it is the best short term holding facility that the BLM has.  The employees are knowledgeable and care very much about the horses, and they take very good care of the horses.  They are also very good to work with regarding adoptions, and I found that out for myself when I adopted my mustang Mica.

I also requested to be allowed to photograph the horses so that I might be able to post photographs of the horses that are there and to help get as many of them adopted as possible, as I have many people waiting on those photographs from me.  I said that I was willing to give the BLM copies of all my photos to help them get these horses adopted.  I even mentioned that I was prepared to pay the commercial fee to be allowed to photograph there, since Canon City has special rules regarding photographing since it is at a prison.  I had been allowed to photograph in 2010 when I adopted my mustang Mica after the 2010 Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek roundups.

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Mica and the other weanlings at Canon City in 2010

Since I am a professional photographer of horses, I am able to get high quality images that will put the horses in their best light.  I have a very large social media following and the images would go out widely.  Photos get people involved, get people interested, motivate them to take action.  If the BLM were really interested in getting these horses placed, I believe they would allow photographs of the horses to be taken.

Instead this is the email response that I received:

“In regards to your camera request for November 7, 2014, I have had numerous requests to bring in cameras to photograph the horses.  Per Department of Corrections Administrative Regulations, no cameras are allowed on grounds for security reasons.  We do make exceptions, but with so many requests for this adoption, it is not fair to the others to see some people with cameras when they were denied.

I think it is in the best interest for the BLM and CCi that we do not allow any cameras on 11/07/2014.”

Notice that nothing is said about the best interests of the horses.

And doesn’t it make sense that if so many people want to photograph these horses,  that no one be allowed to photograph them.

I truly believe that if the BLM could find a way, they would prevent me from photographing the horses in the wild as well.

Oh wait, if they remove all of them, then that is exactly what they will be doing.

 

 

 

 

WILD HORSES AND BURROS TWIN PEAKS, COPPERSMITH AND BUCKHORN HERD MANAGEMENT AREAS October 2014

Report Compiled by:
Jesica Johnston, Environmental Scientist
Lisa LeBlanc, Environmental Researcher
Kathy Gregg, Environmental Researcher
Photographs by Jesica Johnston

“FEW AND FAR BETWEEN”

Wild Burros

Introduction

Wild horses and burros are different from their domestic cousins. Wild equines have to continually learn and adapt to the constantly changing environment directed by nature. During their lifetimes they will see life and death and must learn from their elders and trust their instincts and knowledge of their wild world in order to survive.

Three experienced wildlife observers searched for three days for wild horses and burros and other wildlife in Northern California-Nevada Twin Peaks, Coppersmith and Buckhorn Wild Horse and Burro Herd Management Areas. These areas are managed for all American citizens by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and for the protection of our wild horses and burros. We traveled approximately 160 miles over 3 days and 13 hours in the herd management areas. We drove slowly with many stops; some off-road hiking and almost constant searching with binoculars for signs of wild horses and wild burros. After 3 days, a total of only 18 wild horses and 26 wild burros were observed on the three herd management areas. Of those, we saw 1 burro yearling and no horse foals or yearlings. All observed horses and burros appeared to be in excellent health. What was most obvious in our three day journey was the notable absence of wild horses and burros on their legally authorized herd areas on public land. A few of our wild horses and burros were found…but very few and far between.

During our survey there were times that only a short distance could be seen due to canyon walls but for the majority of the assessment a distance of more than a mile in all directions could be seen and often a distance of many miles were observable with binoculars. Even though time and mileage was documented and a map available, herd management area boundaries are vaguely marked, so some mileage and hours in the herd management areas are rounded or estimated in our report.

Click (HERE) to Download and Read the Report in it’s Entirety