URGENT! Help Save North Carolina’s State Horse!

By Corolla Wild Horse Fund

Small Herd Size is Pushing Horses to Genetic Collapse

The North Carolina State Horse urgently needs your help. The Corolla Wild Horses Protection Act, S 3448, sponsored by North Carolina Senator Kay Hagan and cosponsored by NC Senator Richard Burr, has been sitting in the United States Senate Environment and Public Works Committee since March of this year. It was passed unanimously by the US House of Representatives on February 6. This bill is absolutely critical to the long term survival of the free-roaming wild horses living north of Corolla.

The bill mandates that the herd be managed at 120 – 130 with never less than 110, which is the absolute minimum for genetic and physical health in this wild population. Currently, United States Fish & Wildlife Service (owner of 3,000 of the 7,544 total acres accessible to the wild horses) is insisting that the herd size be 60. Results of recent genetic testing show an alarming level of inbreeding and the presence of only one maternal line. In contrast, the wild horses of Shackleford Banks (Cape Lookout National Seashore) have been managed at the level that we are requesting (120 – 130) for nearly 15 years, on 3,000 acres, with no unacceptable impact to the environment. The Shackleford horses are federally protected by the Shackleford Banks Act that was sponsored by US Congressman Walter Jones (NC) and signed into law in 1998 by President Bill Clinton.

In the last 7 years of our aerial counts, the maximum number of wild horses on the Currituck National Refuge was 35. This year there were 8 and another year there were 0! The majority of the herd is consistently found on private property – not wildlife refuge.

Managing the Corolla herd at 60 is managing for genetic collapse and eventual extinction. In 2010, these wild Colonial Spanish Mustangs were designated by the NC Legislature as the North Carolina State Horse. WE ARE ASKINGFOR YOUR HELP TO SAVE THE WILD HORSES OF COROLLA FROM DISAPPEARING FROM THE LAND THEY HAVE INHABITED FOR CENTURIES.

Time is running out.  Soon, Congress will recess for the holidays. If the bill is not passed, it will have to be introduced in the US House of Representatives and the process will start all over again. Please contact Senators Hagan and Burr and let them know that you not only strongly support the Corolla Wild Horses Protection Act (S3448) you want it passed by the end of this year.

Please act today. Be a voice for the horses. They are an integral part of the history of our country and without your help and support, they may disappear forever.

Senator Kay Hagan: http://www.hagan.senate.gov/contact/   FAX: 202-228-2563; Phone: 202-224-6342

Senator Richard Burr:  http://burr.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.ContactForm

FAX: 202-228-2981; Phone: 202-224-3154



    • Betty Jean Herner. we will do our best to save this beautiful State horse, yes we will fight like hell to keep them free and safe from harm or round ups. Thank you.


  1. Not only do these horses need an additional Umbrella of legal protection but all wild horses in the USA need it; BLM and private range and state range wild horses and burros need this. Only writing a bill with superb coverage for all will we finally get the total change we are seeking!!!

    Please help the efforts to get this stalled bill out of committee and onto the floor for debate. How can our state legislators be so much more able to see the needs of people for their lands and wild ones than the SENATE!???? hat gives? More corporate money in the pockets?


    • Mar, we need a horse convoy to go right up to the Washington steps at the Capital, yes a huge convoy of truckers and horses to converge on Washington. I will be ready to do so. Join us.
      Save the Carolina horses, save the Carolina horses. Leave them alone to be free to roam. So did you hear me Senators and reps read this, yes. Put the additional legal protection on all wild horses. We don’t have many left in the wild. they are all in Oregon and Nevada prison pens, can’t run, can’t really move around to well. Horse families cry and are broken suffering from depression too. Horses are like humans, they do feel emotions. Animals do feel pain. Yes I have seen them in distress. Protect them and defend them.


      • Judith, I do hope we will become more visible again and do what we must. I just think things have been leaning in unproductive directions for a long time and we need to get past the distractions and get to the priorities. I wold love to go to DC and stay until we won….


    • Our horses do not deserve genocide. We will fight to keep them from extinction. Dam that plan. We have a better plan, bring all the ones we can back to their wild homes and reunite the ones that belong together as much as possible to save the gene pool. We must save them. Provide the areas for them free range, no fences. We must work at this plan. I am working on this.


      • We must communicate to our Congressman that the only acceptable alternative for our wild horses and an alternative preferrable to the management currently in place is to return the remaining wild horses to their original herd lands. Any suggestion that these horses be depopulated through horse slaughter or euthanasia as a result of the BLM’s totally incompetent and incomprehensible management strategy will be political suicide for anyone who even thinks about suggesting this. There is plenty of land out there for our wild horses, and the 1971 Act does not include the ability of the Secretary to close down Herd Management Areas. He has exceeded his reach under the law, and that must be addressed.


  2. Well this it folks… if government officals from the state of North Carolina are not willing to look after it´s state horse and do something about it…. then that pretty much tells everyone ,they don´t give a rat´s butt about them and the end is near for them.. I hate to sound so down on the subject, but that´s why they need help NOW·!


  3. Done. Someday these politicians will have ther descendents cringing at the history books naming them as havong a hand at all that is bad right now.

    I hope they wake up and smell the roses and decide to STAND up for Aerica.


    • Jan we hope that the list will be made public and I would like to personally tar and feather each one like they used in days past. Let them smell horse manure the rest of their days and nights, make them work in a stable and clean up after them. Do you think they might appreciate our horses just a little bit and be more humble? May change their minds and hearts?


  4. We are over due to be heard and we must stand for the horses in peril all of them. It is up to us to save them. Call your reps, senators, legislators now. Make it clear to them we will not accept this bill for North Carolina. We must save these horses and let them be free to roam. Call, call, call these people and let your voices be heard. Every horse we can save is another life saved for the valuable genetic pool for each group. We must make this so clear that there is no room for them to act on behalf of our beloved horses.
    It is up to all of us out there, horse lovers, horse owners, horse warriors, yes we can change this horror story now. Stop horse slaughter, stop the BLM round ups, stop horse transport to slaughter.


  5. ): I live in the mountains of North Carolina and Kay Hagen would not agree to meet with me about the anti-slaughter bill!

    I had no idea that we had wild horses in the state which are endangered of extinction!


  6. The Fish and Wildlife Service does NOT OWN ANYTHING. Public Lands belong TO THE PEOPLE.
    Make that fact abundantly clear to Congress and to the public servants who are employed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


  7. http://www.shacklefordhorses.org/about.htm
    The wild horses of Shackleford Banks are of great interest to the scientific community as well as to the average citizen. An international expert of equine behavior, D. I. Rubenstein, PhD, Chairman, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University, and his graduate students have been studying and documenting the social behavior of these wild horses for nearly two decades. The territorial behavior exhibited in the Shackleford herds is not know to occur in the equine populations anywhere else in the world. Dr. Rubenstein has kept a genealogy on the horses based on the dams of each succeeding generation of foals (matrilineages).
    Equine genetics experts, at the University of Kentucky, Virginia Tech, and the University of California at Davis, believe in the importance of assuring the long-term survival of this unique, hardy group of wild North Carolina Banker horses.


  8. The last photos of the corolla wild horses that I saw on social media were horses on a front porch due to Hurricane Sandy. I hope they are not using that as the excuse to push this. ugh. Still not giving up hope!


    • I just emailed Dr.Francesco De Giorgio whose speciality is Appiled Social Learning in Horses he’s part of my Linked In community, I explained the situation… maybe… him and Rubinstein can get together with others and put some pressure on from the scientific community about this special group of mustangs.
      Figured it can’t hurt. Desparate times require desperate measures


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