“Loading ferals as we speak”

by Debbie Coffey, V.P and Director of Wild Horse Affairs, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

In a telephone conversation with Iron County Commissioner Dave Miller this morning, when asked for an update on the situation regarding rounding up wild horses, Mr. Miller stated that they were “loading ferals as we speak.”

This call was immediately followed by a call to BLM Utah State Director Juan Palma’s office, which referred the call to BLM Public Affairs Specialist Lisa Reid.  I relayed Mr. Miller’s comment to Lisa Reid, who stated that as of last night, the “agreement” between BLM and Iron County Commissioners hadn’t been signed, but that yesterday evening, Juan Palma called David Miller one more time to make clear that no wild horses were to be removed.

Reid stated that the BLM agreed “any wild horses that are nuisance horses on private property” (in other words, wild horses that may have wandered off of a Herd Management Area) would be removed by the BLM.  The rancher would need to submit a letter to request for the removal, and so far, BLM in this area had received two letters.  One was for 7 head, and the other was for 20 head.

By the way, removing wild horses that may have wandered onto private property is a “wink, wink, nod, nod” loophole that ranchers across the west are using to push the BLM (and they probably don’t have to push too hard) to remove wild horses without the BLM having to prepare an EA.  And, who would even know if the wild horses had somehow been driven onto the private property?

What is of concern is that only about 3 BLM employees are covering 3 HMA’s that are each about 62,00 acres (so that’s about 186,000 acres).    Ms. Reid stated that there are only a few roads on these HMAs and that the BLM employees would be monitoring activities.  But who is monitoring what could be happening to wild horses on private property if an agreement hasn’t been signed?

Ms. Reid told me that they don’t have rangers, since most are in Mesquite (the Cliven Bundy issue) but they have requested extra support.  Ms. Reid will be giving updates to Wild Horse Freedom Federation and to other wild horse advocacy groups via teleconference.  Meanwhile, the article below is one version of the BLM showdown with Cliven Bundy, and just take a look at all of the BLM law enforcement there.

We continue to be concerned about a lack of monitoring of wild horses that may have roamed onto private property, and for the safety of wild horses in Utah.  The BLM has a mandate to protect the wild horses.

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SOURCE:  gopthedailydose.com

Rogue BLM, Rancher’s Son Arrested, Family Targeted by Fed Snipers For Non-Compliance

567 dave bundy arrested nevada rancher 610

The BLM is doing their best ATF, Ruby Ridge impersonation. The rogue agency is presently involved in what many feel is an illegal invalidation of Nevada Rancher Cliven Bundy’s grazing rights as well as the unauthorized roundup of his cattle.

The big jackboot of the federal government is on display for all to see. This is how they respond to those who would dare to stand up to them.

Dave Bundy, Cliven Bundy’s son, was arrested by armed BLM officers while he was standing on the side of SR 170. His apparent crime, unauthorized picture taking of his family’s cattle grazing along the Virgin River.

Ryan Bundy, Dave’s brother recounts how several family members had gone out to observe what the feds were doing with the family cattle.

The BLM is in the process of confiscating the Bundy cattle as their solution to his failure to recognize their order which invalidated his grazing rights. His contention is that those rights were bought and paid for and the order itself is illegitimate.

On March 27, BLM officials arbitrarily announced they were closing roughly 300,000 acres of land, including that which is in dispute, apparently to help conceal their actions from public scrutiny. They have set up so-called “free speech zones” for media, which are far-removed from and beyond view of the actual activity.

As is customary, the Feds blame the citizen for their actions. National Park Service spokeswoman Christie Vanover said, during a press conference, that “Mr Bundy has created a larger burden to the taxpayers through his statements.

She continued, “He has said that he will ‘do whatever it takes’ and that his response to the impound will ‘have to be more physical’. When threats are made that could jeopardize the safety of the American people, the contractors and our personnel; we have the responsibility to provide law enforcement to account for their safety. The greater the threats, the more security that is needed to provide public safety and the greater the cost to the American taxpayer. We are hopeful that lawful protests don’t escalate to illegal activity.”

Through all of their years of ranching, the Bundy’s haven’t posed a risk to anybody. The only thing that is different is the presence of federal goons.

As to the arrest of Dave Bundy, his brother Ryan insists that his brother was merely taking photographs. “He was doing nothing but standing there and filming the landscape,” Ryan Bundy said. “We were on the state highway, not even off of the right-of-way. Even if they want to call [the area that we were filming] federal land; which it’s not; we weren’t even on it. We were on the road.”

The group of four Bundy vehicles had parked on the north side of the road and Dave was filming. Out of nowhere a contingent  of BLM vehicles swarmed down upon them. Ryan Bundy described it, saying , “I counted, they had 11 vehicles all with at least two agents in each one, maybe more.” He said, “They also had four snipers on the hill above us all trained on us. We were doing nothing besides filming the area.”

None of the Bundys were armed with anything more than a camera. BLM loudspeakers ordered the family to leave the area.  Bundy continued, “They said that we had no first amendment rights except for up by the bridge where they had established an area for that.”

The BLM has established two fenced areas near the City of Mesquite, that they have designated as free speech areas for members of the public to express their opinions. In other words, they have declared the remainder of the area to be Constitution-Free Zones with our rights invalidated.

Dave didn’t return fast enough for the jackboots. “He was filming and talking on the phone, I don’t know to whom. It happened pretty fast. They came down on him hard and had a German Shepherd on him. And then they took him,” Ryan said.

He continued, “I stayed and witnessed the whole thing. I told them that I was not going to engage them and that I just wanted to take my brother with me. But they were pushing, pushing, pushing! So I did stay there long enough to witness the whole thing, about 10 feet away from me.”

BLM issued the following statement: “An individual is in custody in order to protect public safety and maintain the peace. The individual has rights and therefore details about the arrest will not be disclosed until and unless charges are filed.”

Ryan Bundy says they have nowhere to turn.  “We don’t have any policing representation,” he said. “Our local police will not respond. The County Sheriff will not respond. NHP will not respond.”

BLM claims this arrest was for public safety. It is clearly because the family isn’t backing town to their tyranny and BLM is being exposed as tyrannical overzealous thugs. The militarized police and feds, they’ve got all of this ammunition and weapons, and a real itch to use them.

 

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Utah ranchers plan to illegally roundup wild horses starting on Thursday

To Live FreeEven though BLM’s Juan Palma caved in to illegal threats made by the Iron County Commissioners for wild horse roundups by private citizens  and told them he’d have a plan for removal in place by Friday, the Iron County Commissioners (with support from Iron County Sheriff Mark Gower) broke off their meeting with the BLM and plan their illegal activities to commence on this Thursday.  Iron County Commissioner David Miller claims “we have to get those horses off the range immediately.”  Once again, private (livestock) interests are treating PUBLIC LANDS like their own PRIVATE PROPERTY.

Please write to the BLM and ask them to post Federal Marshalls around the HMAs to stop this illegal activity (thank you Janet Schultz for demanding this action from the BLM), and to remove livestock immediately from the same area, since there is not enough water and forage for the wild horses.    jpalma@blm.gov and jguilfoy@blm.gov

SOURCE:  The Spectrum

Read the story HERE

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BLM Washington office not an adversary to those making threats of illegal roundups

The BLM Washington office has informed BLM Utah State Director Juan Palma that they don’t want to be an adversary to a bunch of folks in Utah who are planning an illegal roundup of wild horses (Why not?  The BLM doesn’t mind being adversarial with wild horse advocates).   The BLM is jumping through hoops (and possibly legal loopholes…oh wait, can it be another emergency roundup based on drought to avoid having to prepare an Environmental Assessment?) to” work with” this bunch who are continuing to threaten illegal roundups.

David Miller, the Iron County Commissioner who seems to be at the forefront of inciting this illegal act is quoted as saying “We are pleased with Juan and his leadership.  We feel like we are all of the same spirit to do the right thing for everybody, including the horses,” Miller said. “But we aren’t going to wait around.”

(Uh oh.  Another publicized threat of illegal activity.)

BLM’s Juan Palma said if a roundup takes place, horses would be held on property volunteered by a rancher, and then adds “We will provide accountability throughout the process with strong oversight and responsibility.”

Really?

Let’s all write to Juan Palma (jpalma@blm.gov) and Joan Guilfoyle, BLM’s Division Chief of the Wild Horse & Burro Program (jguilfoy@blm.gov) to ask if the public will be able to attend the roundups in Iron County, Utah, and if the public will have access to the temporary holding corrals, too, so that we can have oversight and accountability.  I’m sure the BLM will fall all over themselves to work with us on this.

Maybe we should also threaten to sue the BLM if they don’t reduce livestock grazing in the area, and threaten to go in and roundup the cattle ourselves (you know, because of the drought), and keep them on private property somewhere, with a promise to the owners that we’ll be nice to the cattle and we’ll provide strong oversight over ourselves.   Let’s see if the BLM will work with us.  If the BLM doesn’t treat us just like they’re treating these Iron County commissioners, would it be discrimination?

SOURCE:  The Salt Lake Tribune

Iron County, BLM working on wild horse deal

BLM is looking for a compromise with Iron County, but if the feds don’t act soon, locals may do the roundup.
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Chris Detrick | The Salt Lake Tribune Wild horses are rounded up near the Swasey Mountains in Utah on Feb. 14, 2013. Of the 257 horses gathered, nearly 100 — many of them mares treated with a contraceptive — were returned to the range. Others were adopted or held in captivity. The federal Bureau of Land Management is charged with managing the estimated 36,000 wild horses roaming 10 Western states.

Negotiations are on in the brewing battle over wild horses in southwestern Utah, but so is the threat of a drought-inspired emergency roundup.

Iron County leaders reported Friday that the Bureau of Land Management has responded to their ultimatum to reduce the overpopulation of wild horses in the area, but they are still considering corralling the animals themselves.

“The state BLM director said he received communications from the Washington office that, based on the direction Iron County is taking, that rather than be an adversary that they should work with us,” County Commissioner Chairman David Miller said Friday morning. “They are working to get us a formalized statement that will help us get the population to the appropriate levels. But we are not calling off the cavalry. We are still putting together our own plan.”

The commission presented the BLM with a letter earlier this week warning the federal land agency to reduce the number of wild horses on the western edge of the county or it would. The deadline of high noon Friday came and went without any signs of roundups from either the county or the BLM.

County officials complain the horses are wreaking havoc on range shared by native wildlife and cattle on BLM-permitted land. The Utah office of the BLM has estimated 1,200 horses are spread over several management units. The agency’s own plans call for 300.

“In concept, we are all working toward the same goal: a shared responsibility for this wonderful icon of the West,” said Juan Palma, BLM’s Utah director, who mentioned Beaver County officials have also been involved in the discussions. “We have an agreement in concept, but it is not yet completely defined.”

Palma said the BLM has some legal processes to work out. He explained that if a roundup takes place, horses would be held on property volunteered by a rancher, and the federal agency would provide supervision and feed for the animals until they could be adopted or moved to other facilities.

“We can provide our experience of doing roundups for years,” he said. “Our biggest concern with the public aspect of it is the possibility of someone getting hurt. We don’t want that to happen.”

Palma emphasized that the agency has “concerns for the horses as well.”

“We will provide accountability throughout the process with strong oversight and responsibility. We know there are people out there concerned for the wild horses, and we will treat them well.”

He worries, for instance, that the mares are giving birth this time of year, so extra care would need to be taken in any roundup.

Palma plans to send a more formal proposal to Miller and suggests the county provide three people and the BLM three people to attend a meeting early next week to determine the logistics of any roundups.

“We are pleased with Juan and his leadership. We feel like we are all of the same spirit to do the right thing for everybody, including the horses,” Miller said. “But we aren’t going to wait around.”

County commissioners and ranchers are not the only ones concerned about the high numbers of wild horses in the West Desert.

Utah wildlife officials worry about their impact on other species. Wild horses and burros are not recognized as wildlife in Utah because the Wild Horse and Burro Act made them a federally regulated species, said Bill Bates, chief of wildlife for the Division of Wildlife Resources.

Even so, biologists are aware of their presence.

“Anybody in land management recognizes wild horses do have a significant impact in some locations,” Bates said. “In arid areas, where water is limited, they tend to camp out on springs and other sources.”

Wild horses and burros also tend to bully other animals.

“It has been well documented,” Bates said, “that bighorn sheep and other animals are less likely to go into springs or other water sources if there are horses there.”

Bates said Utah biologists consider wild horses and burros when they work on management plans for other species and discuss the animals when they huddle with the feds.

“We are supportive of the BLM,” he said, “but we would really encourage them to follow their management plans.”

It seems the threat by Iron County to do its own roundup and the drought have prompted the BLM to step up their efforts.

Read the rest of the article HERE.

CNN Video: BLM Illegally Rounds Up Wild Horses for Sale to Slaughter

Reported by Jane Velez-Mitchell and Mary Cella on HLNTV.com

American Tax Dollars Shamelessly Wasted by the Feds

Click on image to view video

Click on image to view video

The U.S. government just rounded up 41 wild horses that were roaming public land and shipped 37 of them off to a Canadian slaughterhouse.  4 young foals were rescued are now under the care of a veterinarian in Colorado.

Over 50,000+ are now under government control.  Many of them are being held in holding pens in the American Mid-West.

Critics say this latest roundup was illegal.  The Bureau of Land Management says “regarding the 41 unauthorized domestic horses…The Bureau of Land Management had no authority over these animals under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act other than their removal.”  But the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act clearly states “‘wild free-roaming horses and burros’ means all unbranded and unclaimed horses and burros on public lands of the United States.”

Jane speaks to Ginger Kathrens, the executive director of the Cloud Foundation, who saw these horses just before they were rounded up and says they were unbranded.

Click (HERE) to comment directly at HLN TV

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Who are the 3 people trying to wield power to get rid of wild horses?

3 Iron County (Utah) Commissioners are threatening to take the unlawful action of removing wild horses if the BLM doesn’t.  Commissioner David Miller is quoted as saying “Volunteers are ready, corrals are prepared and feed has been secured in case the BLM does not act promptly.”

On a BLM adoption form, the BLM stated removing wild horses is a prohibited act: 

“PROHIBITED ACTS

(a) Maliciously or negligently injuring or harassing a wild horse or burro;

(b) Treating a wild horse or burro inhumanely;

(c) Removing or attempting to remove a wild horse or burro from the public lands without authorization from the BLM;

(d) Destroying a wild horse or burro without authorization from the BLM, except as an act of mercy;

(e) Selling or attempting to sell a wild horse or burro or its remains;

(f) Branding a wild horse or burro;

(g) Removing or altering a freeze mark on a wild horse or burro;

(h) Violating an order, term, or condition established by the BLM under this part;

(i) Commercially exploiting a wild horse or burro;

Any person who commits a prohibited act is subject to a fine of not more than $2,000 or imprisonment for not more than one year,

or both, for each violation. ” 

Would “each violation” mean a fine and imprisonment for EACH wild horse removed?

Will the BLM label these County Commissioners as “emotional publics” or “eco-terrorists?”  Is it just a coincidence, or does it seem like County Commissions (with ties to Associations of Counties) are suddenly jumping on the bandwagon to get rid of wild horses?  Could livestock and other special  interests likely be behind this push?  Who is forking over money to elect these County Commissioners?

Who are the 3 Iron County Commissioners?

David J. Miller (click on his name to link to a vimeo of Mr. Miller discussing the transfer of public land)

Alma Adams

Dale Brinkerhoff

SOURCE:  Salt Lake Tribune

Iron County to feds: Remove wild horses or we will

Letter from Iron County commissioners gives Bureau of Land Management a Friday deadline to submit a plan.
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Chris Detrick | The Salt Lake Tribune Wild horses from Utah’s Swasey herd are rounded up by Cattoor Livestock Roundup Co in the West Desert near the Swasey Mountains Thursday February 14, 2013. Under the Bureau of Land Management operation 50 miles west of Delta, helicopter wranglers will gather 262 horses. One hundred will be released back into the Swasey Herd Management Area — one of Utah’s 19 HMAs on federal land. Many of the horses released will be mares treated with the contraceptive Porcine Zona Pellucida (PZP-22).

Iron County commissioners have given the Bureau of Land Management an ultimatum: Come up with an immediate plan to remove hundreds of wild horses from the area or residents will do it themselves.

As drought damages rangelands in southwestern Utah, the overpopulation of wild horses is threatening livestock and wildlife, said Commissioner David Miller. In response, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) wants to reduce the number of cattle allowed or “allotted” in grazing leases, Miller said.

“Inaction and no-management practices pose an imminent threat to ranchers who are being pushed to reduce their allotments by 50 percent thereby damaging the value of their private rights,” reads a March 30 letter signed by Miller and Iron County Sheriff Mark Gower.

Volunteers are ready, corrals are prepared and feed has been secured in case the BLM does not act promptly, Miller said.

The letter, addressed to BLM Principal Deputy Director Neil Kornze, gives the federal agency until noon Friday to present a plan for removing horses by a “time acceptable to mitigate the threats and adverse conditions” in Iron County.

A BLM management plan says there should be 300 wild horses in the area, but the agency estimates there are 1,200 animals, Miller said.

“We will take whatever action we have to take to reduce those numbers immediately,” Miller said Thursday. “We expect the BLM to take that action. If they refuse we cannot wait until the range is destroyed.”

Calls to the BLM were not immediately returned.

Read the rest of the article HERE

 

Free Roaming Wyoming Horses Rounded up by BLM and sold to Canadian Slaughterhouse by Wyoming Livestock Board

Source: The Cloud Foundation

No public comment period – no transparency – no opportunity for horse rescue organizations to save horses from a terrible fate.

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO. (March 31, 2014) – On March 24, The Cloud Foundation received an anonymous tip that BLM had rounded up and removed 41 free-roaming horses from public lands in northern Wyoming.  Further investigation revealed that BLM conducted a helicopter roundup of the horses and turned them over to the Wyoming Livestock Board who sold the horses directly to the Canadian Bouvry Slaughterouse. The taxpayer-funded roundup was conducted with no notice of sale after the horses were impounded, giving no one the opportunity to step in and negotiate a deal to purchase any of the horses. Even Bighorn County Sheriff, Kenneth Blackburn, was surprised that he received no notification of the roundup, which was conducted in his jurisdiction. The horses were driven to Shelby, Montana, to the Bouvry-owned feedlot, the jumping off point to their Canadian slaughterhouse, the largest slaughterhouse in Canada.

“These were colorful wild horses I spotted several years ago while driving to the Pryor Mountains,” stated  Ginger Kathrens Executive Director of the Cloud Foundation. “They lived on what we’ve been told was a wild horse Herd Area southeast of the Pryors.” The small, remnant herd roamed a starkly beautiful landscape east of US 310 between Lovell and Greybull, WY. ‘”We stopped to admire them on March 10th on our way back to Colorado.” Kathrens adds. “The sight of these lovely, free-spirited animals, some with their newborn foals, against the backdrop of the snow-covered Bighorn Mountains was glorious. It’s hard to think about the horror they suffered just days later.”
On March 18, only eight days after Kathrens last spotted the horses, the BLM Field Office in Cody, WY supervised their roundup and removal. A BLM spokesperson told a Cloud Foundation representative that the horses would be held at the Worland Livestock Auction for 10 days and then sold.  However, later investigation revealed that the 41 horses rounded up by Cattoor Livestock Company on March 18-19 were delivered to the Worland Livestock Auction for brand inspection. Just a few hours later, once the brand inspection was completed, 37 horses were loaded onto a truck paid for by the Wyoming Department of Agriculture and hauled to the Canadian border.
“According to Wyoming, Statute, Title 11, Chapter 24 entitled Agriculture, Livestock and Other Animals, ‘Estray horses rounded up must be held for not more than 10 days before going to auction,’” reported Paula Todd King, Communications Director for the Cloud Foundation. “These horses were rounded up and within hours they were on their way to the border. We found no notice announcing the roundup.”
The history of these horses is debatable. The BLM contends they are not wild, stating that they once belonged to an area rancher who died and his horses have only been in the area for 40 years. However, the Wild Horse and Burro Act (WHB Act) defines a wild horses as an “unclaimed, unbranded horse on federal lands in the United States.” Wyoming brand inspector, Frank Barrett, verified there were no brands of any kind on any of the animals.
Less than a mile from where Kathrens had been observing the horses is the boundary of the “zeroed out” Foster Gulch/Dry Creek Herd Area, designated for wild horse use after the passage of the WHB Act in 1971. “As they have done over a hundred times, the BLM decided not to manage wild horses in the area in 1987,” explains Kathrens. “If the horses have lived in the area for 40 years as BLM states, it is entirely possible that these horses were descendants of the herd eliminated from management in 1987.”
It is clear that these horses have survived for many years on their own, living in wild family bands, and thriving without human intervention.  Conflicting reasons have been given for the timing of this BLM roundup when the horses had newborn foals. BLM indicated that private landowners in the area have complained about horses trespassing on their land.  Sarah Beckwith, BLM spokesperson said that the horses were a threat to public safety – vehicles had killed two horses.  However, after further investigation, TCF found that a train struck one horse 6-8 years ago, and a private vehicle struck another around 5 years ago. Jack Mononi, Supervisory Rangeland Management Specialist for Cody BLM, told Todd-King that if the Agency did not spend the federal dollars by the end of March, the funds would no longer be available.
Kathrens called the Bouvry Exports Shelby facility in an attempt to negotiate purchase of the 37 horses. The woman who answered the phone would not confirm that the horses had arrived in Shelby and told Kathrens that “these horses were rounded up and removed for slaughter and that is where they are going.” Kathrens offered to pay more than the going price and was told that this was not possible. “I was shaking when I got off the phone,” Kathrens said. “To think that this could be happening sickens me.”
Kim Michels of Red Lodge, MT, purchased all that appears to have survived of the small herd, four tiny foals born this year. “We will do all we can to see that these babies not only survive but thrive as a fitting legacy to their lost freedom and their families,” said Michels. The foals were rescued by Stacey Newby, co-owner of the Worland Livestock Auction, who fed and cared for the foals, bottle-feeding the tiniest, a 3-week-old filly. The foals are now in the care of equine veterinarian, Lisa Jacobson, in Colorado.
TCF continues to investigate the legality of what appears to be a carefully planned and executed operation at taxpayer expense. “Was it legal?” Kathrens questions. “It is clear to me that it was not moral and certainly inhumane. I do not believe that American taxpayers want their money spent to roundup and send horses to slaughter.”
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Pony lovers struggle over how best to save Newfoundland’s historic, near-extinct breed

By Joe O’Connor as published in the National Post

“Losing the pony to a federal agency would be like losing another piece of our identity…”

Newfoundland pony lovers are crowing that a bunch of meddling mainlanders want to shift stewardship of their beloved animal from the province to a federal agency. Courtesy of Libby Carew

Her full name is Mary-Jaine Seymoure of Slievenamon, a Gaelic mouthful, to be sure, that translates into “women of the mountain.” And she does live on a mountain, on a farm in St. John’s, Newfoundland, where she spends her days batting her big eyelashes and peering over shoulders and being playfully mischievous. At nighttime, she lets herself out of her barn, an equine magic trick that mystifies Helene Goyer — another woman of the mountain — and Mary-Jaine Seymoure of Slievenamon’s owner.

“My husband and I still don’t know how she does it,” Ms. Goyer says. “One evening she let herself out and got into our deep freezer and ate all our berries. So we tied a rope around the freezer. The next day she untied the rope and we found her in her barn with five Mr. Freezes in her mouth.”

Mary-Jaine Seymoure is a Newfoundland pony whose ancestors are as central to the story of Newfoundland as the wooden boat. Brought by settlers from the British Isles, some as far back as 400 years ago, the ponies were the engines of the pre-industrial age. Hauling wood, boats, fish, working the mines, clearing the land and becoming, along with the people who brought them over, true Newfoundlanders, a distinct and hardy stock on a hardscrabble island not for the faint of heart, or hoof.

There were about 12,000 Newfoundland ponies by the early 1970s. Twenty years later they were virtually extinct. Made obsolete by mass mechanization, and not meant to be pets, they were sold for meat and shipped to Europe for the enjoyment of continental diners. With the end of the Newfoundland pony nigh the provincial legislature took action, passing the Heritage Animals Act in 1996 to protect and “promote certain breeds or kinds of animals that have an attachment to the province’s history.” The Newfoundland pony, to date, is the only such animal, while the St. John’s-based Newfoundland Pony Society, by statute, is responsible for their protection.

There are perhaps 400 ponies remaining today, many residing in Ontario.

And now a new threat looms. Newfoundland pony lovers, such as Helene Goyer and the Newfoundland Pony Society behind her, are crowing that a bunch of meddling mainlanders — surely with dollar signs in their eyes — want to shift stewardship of their beloved animal away from the province to some cold-eyed federal agency in Ottawa so that professional breeders can play God with the gene pool that made the pony what it is today and knock the Newfoundland Pony Society from its perch as the pony’s designated protector.

“Losing the pony to a federal agency would be like losing another piece of our identity,” Ms. Goyer says. “If we lose control over the Newfoundland pony, if a change goes ahead and there is a mixing of breeds, our perfect little pony — as it has been for 400 years — is going to be lost.

“We’d be giving away our heritage.”

The cod and outports are already gone. Many of Newfoundland’s young people are working in Alberta. Will the Newfoundland pony be the next to go? It sounds diabolical, but the man in the role of mastermind doesn’t, it seems, have a diabolical bone in his body. His name is John Scanlan, a Scotsman by birth and by accent, with a 68-acre Newfoundland pony equestrian centre located northeast of Toronto that he runs with his wife, Jan. Both have utter, unabashed, crushes on the Newfoundland pony. Mr. Scanlan, age 62, is an affable fellow who portrays the entire flap over the Newfoundland pony as people in Newfoundland playing at politics, at fear mongering, instead of dealing in facts…(CONTINUED)

Click (HERE) to read the rest of the story and to comment at the National Post

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