“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.


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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Letter to BLM: Stop the Criminal Conspiracy

The important letter below was sent to listed parties of the BLM by a wild horse & burro advocate:

April 8, 2014

Joan Guilfoyle, Division Chief BLM Division of Wild Horses and Burros jguilfoy@blm.gov

Juan Palma, Utah State Director, BLM   jpalma@blm.gov

 Jenna Whitlock, Utah Associate State Director, BLM   jwhitloc@blm.gov

Todd Christensen, Color Country Utah District Manager BLM utccmail@blm.gov

Salvatore R. Lauro Director, Office of Law Enforcement and Security BLM SLauro@blm.gov

BLM Utah State Office utsomail@blm.gov

Re: Threats to Capture Wild Horses in Utah in Violation to Federal Law

Dear Sirs/Madams:

Please stop this conspiracy to commit any illegal activity on public land before it goes any further.  The American people own the public lands and resources in the West and they are supposed to be administered and protected on our behalf by the national government under laws and regulations.  These are not “federal lands.”  They are public lands.  They never belonged to any state, county, individual, private or corporate entity.  The land and the resources and the animals belong to the citizens of the United States.

The current threats by the Iron County Commissioners et al are apparently being made in response to BLM’s request to remove or reduce the privately owned domestic livestock that have, in the past, been permitted to graze on public land.  Removal or reduction of domestic livestock which provides financial gain for any private or corporate owned institution must be activated in favor of protecting the land and the wildlife and wild horses and wild burros and their habitat that belong to the American people.  As a matter of fact, by law the BLM can and should close appropriate areas of public lands to grazing use by all domestic livestock, if necessary, to provide habitat for wild horses or burros; to implement herd management actions; or to protect wild horses or burros from disease, harassment, or injury. 43 C.F.R. § 4710.5. It is the law.

Per the 1971 Congressional Wild Horse and Burro Act, the land is to be devoted PRINCIPALLY although not exclusively to the wild horses and wild burros’ welfare in keeping with the multiple-use management concept of public lands.   Definition of “principally”: First, highest, foremost in importance, rank, worth or degree, chief, mainly, largely, chiefly, especially, particularly, mostly, primarily, above all, predominantly, in the main, for the most part, first and foremost.  Wild horses and burros are legally DESIGNATED on the Herd Management Area(HMA) and livestock are only PERMITTED. Definition of the word “designated” is to “set aside for” or “assign” or “authorize”.  Definition of “permit” is to “allow” or “let” or “tolerate”.  The HMA and HA lands and resources are set aside for, and assigned and authorized for, the use of wild horses and burros whereas the livestock is only allowed and tolerated and let to use the public range resources.  While commercial livestock grazing is permitted on public lands, it is not a requirement under the agency’s multiple use mandate as outlined in the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA).  Indeed, public land grazing clearly is a privilege not a right, while the BLM is mandated by law to protect wild horses and burros.

It appears from recent news reports that BLM is cowering to the conspirators that have stated they intend to break the federal law.  These Utah ranchers and the Iron County Commission are threatening to break a federal law and their threat alone is a conspiracy against the citizens of the United States of America.  Will BLM cower to these people and allow them to bully the American people and the government of the United States?  If they do, then all participating members of BLM are equally guilty as accessories to the conspiracy.

A criminal conspiracy exists when two or more people agree to commit an unlawful act, and then take some action toward its completion.  The action taken need not itself be a crime, but it must indicate that those involved in the conspiracy knew of the plan and intended to break the law. All collaborators involved and showing intent to break the law can be charged with conspiracy to commit the crime, regardless of whether the crime itself is actually attempted or completed.

An accessory to conspiracy must generally have knowledge that a crime is being, or will be committed.  A person with such knowledge may become an accessory by helping or encouraging the criminal in some way, or simply by failing to report the crime to proper authority.  If BLM law enforcement can’t stop the Utah ranchers and County Commissioners from committing crimes that they have publically announced they will carry out, then it is BLM’s legal duty to report those crimes to the proper authority that is capable of stopping the crime against the American people.  If they don’t … then they are clearly accessories to the crimes.

It has not evaded my notice that BLM is not threatening these ranchers with arrest by Federal Marshalls.   I now demand that armed Federal Marshalls be posted at the boundaries of the wild horse HMAs with orders to use force to protect the wild horses.  If this action is not taken, charges will be filed with the Inspector General and articles will be filed with the BLM Office of Hearings and Appeals.   As employees of the United States Government were you not sworn to protect the rights of the citizens of the United States?

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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Letter from wild horse & burro advocate to BLM

Each person can make a difference.  With Iron County Commissioner’s (in Utah) decision to start an illegal roundup wild horses by private citizens on Thursday, this letter to BLM’s Utah State Director, Juan Palma, and BLM’s Division Chief of the Wild Horse & Burro Program, Joan Guilfoyle, written by wild horse advocate Janet Schultz, asks that the BLM post Federal Marshalls around the HMAs to stop this illegal activity.

“Subject: Utah Controversy

I’m following with interest the story evolving over the Bundy cattle case and the threats of the Utah citizens.  I’m also reading the comments enflaming the population of “ranchers” threatening to roundup wild horses, if the law is followed in removing ther cattle, which have apparently illegally grazed public lands for more than a few years.

It has not escaped my notice that BLM is not threatening these ranchers with arrest by federal marshalls.

This is on its face unequal application of the law against citizens threatening violation of the law by using animals as their excuse.  Armed guards stand post a every wild horse roundup.

I will now demand that armed marshalls be posted at the boundaries of the HMAs presently being focused on with orders to use force to protect the wild horses.  If this action is not taken, charges will be filed with the Inspector General and articles will be filed with the BLM Office of Hearings and Appeals.

Stories of the horses being rounded up and maintained on private property under emergency contracts is ludicrous.  That offer has been made many times by advocates for the protection of the wild horses.  Undertaking that effort on behalf of those who want the horses disposed of is UNEQUAL protection and favoritism.

It will be plain that our government is out of control and a stringent review of its budget and authority will be undertaken.

Janet Schultz”

If you want to write to BLM’s Juan Palma and Joan Guilfoyle, their e-mail addresses are: jpalma@blm.gov and jguilfoy@blm.gov


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.”


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.
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.

Sometimes No News is Good News

So it goes, today, with “Feel Good Sunday.”

R.T. Fitch, Terry and all the CrittersThere has been much that has transpired in the past several days that has left feelings raw and nerves jangled. So much so that we are going to rest, today, take the day off and hit it again on Monday.

We hope that our readers will do the same and enjoy time with family and friends.

The time that we have together is so very, very short.

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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