Horse News


By Cynthia Kennedy & Patrick Kennedy
Virginia City News

Wild Horse Freedom Federation and SFTHH stand shoulder to shoulder with the astonishing advocates who are attempting to save the last of the vanishing Virginia Range Wild Horse Herd.  The first true love of Wild Horse Annie these horses have earned a spot in the hearts of all Americans.  Whatever it takes to stop the Nevada Department of Agriculture from not only ripping these horses from the range but putting them up, almost instantly, for sale to slaughter we will be there and we hope you will be too.  Be it the BLM or the State of Nevada one thing is for certain, Nevada is “ground zero” in the war to save the last of our national icons.  Keep the faith.” ~ R.T.


Reporter Finds Horse Auction To Be Eye-Opening Experience
Father, mother and baby Cremellos with bay and buckskin herdmate at the Nevada Livestock Marketing Yard in Fallon on Jan. 9. Photo by Patrick Kennedy

Father, mother and baby Cremellos with bay and buckskin herdmate at the Nevada Livestock Marketing Yard in Fallon on Jan. 9. Photo by Patrick Kennedy

My editor asked me to report on the latest auction of Virginia Range wild horses, at the Nevada Livestock Marketing yard in Fallon.

These are estray horses, not on BLM land and not subject to federal protection, trapped by the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA) and considered property of the state.

There had been reports of “shilling” at these recent auctions, and Karen wanted to know if these claims were true.

Everyone should have the opportunity to visit a livestock sale once in their lives. It’s another link in the food chain, as most of the beef, pork and lamb you eat is sold under the gavel.

Nevada Livestock Marketing is located in the middle of Fallon, just south of Highway 50. The first impression you have when you step on the property is the smell.

I’ve been around plenty of cutting horse events and rodeos, and have owned horses most of my life, but this was that smell multiplied by a thousand.

The auction is in a cinder block building and behind it are dozens of pens, linked by alleys, and two wooden catwalks 20 feet above, from where you can survey all the pens. We saw that the wild horses were in corrals on the east side, but the alley to them was blocked by chained gates, so we walked up onto the catwalk, that was still a considerable distance from the horses.

After walking the length of the catwalk, we realized we could step down at the other end and walk up the alley and see the horses. So we did.

There were 41 estrays in the auction, located in several adjacent pens, and they appeared to be comfortable in their surroundings, eating hay from bunkers.

Recently gelded stallions sparred through the fences, but it seemed more play than animosity. Patrick quietly took some photos. We’d been warned in advance by others that photography might not be allowed, but the photos we were taking could never be considered incriminating.

Before they’d been hauled to auction, the males had been gelded, and each horse had been micro-chipped, had a square block of hair shaved from its rump and a large, crude “N” freeze-branded there. None seemed the worse for wear.

As we neared the end of the alley, a cowboy on horseback from afar yelled, “Hey, I’m going to run cows down that alley! You get outta there or I’m gonna call the sheriff!”

We’d gotten our photos, so we responded, “Sure! We’re leaving right now!” and we retraced our steps back up to the catwalk. As we made our way down the rickety boards, stopping to chat with other groups of people who were looking at the stock, three deputies from the Churchill County Sheriff’s Office approached us.

“There’s been a report of people jumping over the fence into the horse pens.” Deputy Lewallen stated. “We’ve been here for 40 minutes Deputy, and haven’t seen anyone in the pens.” I replied. “Well, they’re trying to run cattle, and they say people have been in the alley.” I motioned to the deputy to look down over the railing at two small calves, laying in the straw way below us. “See those two calves? Those are the cattle they’ve been running in that alley, and the horses are over in that far alley.” Lewallen smiled, and we were ready to walk on. “I’ll need to see your IDs.” Now this was getting ridiculous, but Patrick and I gave our IDs, Lewallen ran a search on both of us with his phone, and then we were allowed to go on our way. He and his deputies had been polite and pleasant the entire time, but was this really necessary? After all, this was a public auction of “state property.”

Unfortunately, we’d gotten our timing wrong, and had to wait more than three hours for the horses to go on the block.

During that time, I saw dozens of cows, bulls, steers and calves run through the half-moon shaped pen, that was also a scale, and sold by the pound.

The process was quick, and there were about 30 people in the small indoor amphitheater bidding and watching. I wondered how the wild horses would react to the shaky metal floor, slamming doors, and the odd enclosure into which they’d be driven and separated from their herd. An auction yard has no place for natural horsemanship.

Finally, the bovines were all sold. The bidding ranchers in their crisp, starched Wranglers and Stetson hats left the building. Several cowboys were in the stands, mostly canner bidders. There were also some “grade” domestic horses in the sale.

These horses are victims of the poor economy, high hay prices, and the fact that few little girls long for horses as they did in decades past.

A nice quarter horse or Arabian that would have sold for $1,000 10 years ago, goes for around a hundred. People bidding on these horses have no concern for how well they’re trained, or if they have a friendly personality. Their only interest is in their weight. Now, that horse will sell for around $100, get loaded on a truck with 26 others, and make the long haul to a slaughter house in Canada or Mexico, with no stop to relieve themselves outside of the trailer, or even a drink of water. This is the fate of the free horses that you see on Craigs List every day. Most of them end up at an auction yard.

But this is the sixth auction of estray horses trapped by the NDA since September, attended by the wild horse advocates. It’s easy to pick them out in the crowd: middle-aged women, sitting in groups.

One of them is Shannon Windle of Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund. Another is Anna Orchard, who lives at the foot of Toll Road. She’s there to buy some of the horses in the Bay Bunch, most of whom have been seen roaming in the foothills, and in the subdivision on Equestrian Road

Orchard comes from a ranching family, “I’ve bought horses in the past from the state prison sale and at the Wild Horse & Burro Expo. For these horses, I’m going to gentle and saddle train them, and then send them up to my family in Canada who will use them as ranch horses. They’re wonderful.”

But how do you bid on a horse when you aren’t even allowed to get near it to evaluate it? Nevada Livestock Marketing does not allow bidders near the horses in advance of the auction, and it’s true that one can’t even take a photo or video. When he pulled out his camera to take photos during the auction, Patrick was sternly reminded of that by owner, Jack Payne. It was all the horse advocates could do, to try to match up the hip numbers with the horses’ brief descriptions on the sale sheet during the auction.

Windle had told me that at past auctions, she’d not even been allowed up on the catwalk nearest the wild horse pens. She’d take the list of sale horses and her binoculars and go up on the far catwalk, and try to match descriptions and hip numbers. Every time, a cowboy down below would yell, “Camera!” and the catwalk would clatter with the running boots of a yard employee bent on stopping her “photography,” only to realize she had binoculars.

The grade horses were first on the block and sold by the pound. An 1100 pound horse sold for around $100. Then the wild horses were prodded through the door. Often, they slipped on the slick metal floor strewn with sawdust, and feces, and had to be chowsed to get up and go on. Neighs rang out as herdmates were separated from one another. At one point, a mare was sold, and several lots later, her nursing foal came through, whinnying frantically for his mother.

“That foal should have NEVER been separated from its mother! You need to stop bidding on that foal and just put it with its mother,” Tam Resovich of the Starlight Sanctuary commanded. Looks were exchanged between Jack Payne and the auctioneer. The usual practice at sale yards is to never separate a nursing animal from its mother. They gave in to Resovich’s request.

But while this would seem to reflect a degree of fairness, what was happening once the wild horses came across the block was decidedly unfair. The estrays that averaged in weight at around 700 pounds. were selling for around $300! Over twice the amount of the much larger grade horses. This was only due to the fact that sale yard owner, Jack Payne, was sitting in a front-row seat bidding on every lot.

Toe-to-toe he went with Shannon Windle, who had bidder numbers from Hidden Valley, as well as several other advocacy groups. Horses from Stagecoach, Fernley, Rhodes Road, and   the Toll Road area went through. But why would Payne bid so much for these horses that were worth far less than the grade horses? He seemed bent to drive the prices paid by Windle, Orchard and the others as high possible.

In two instances (of 41), he did buy horses. Windle dropped out. Later on in the office when bidders were settling their accounts, she asked Payne if she could buy the two horses he’d bought. “Sure, you can pay what I did.” Windle spent $7,720 at the sale that day, and not one wild horse went to slaughter. The horses she did not buy were bought by Orchard and other advocates.

This sale left more questions than answers. I’ve been to many auctions in my lifetime, and never have I bid against the auction house owner in the stands. I know about absentee and phone bidders, but this seemed nothing like those scenarios.

My notes on the auction consisted of hastily scribbled weights and sale prices. If Patrick hadn’t been helping me find the lots on the sheet as they came through, completely out of order, I’d have lost count.

Each horse was in the ring for less than a minute, and the next lot was pushed through before the prior was even bought.

What if a Fandango Pass herd had been sold tonight? It was bad enough seeing these confused animals’ fate hanging by a thread between a sad ending, and the efforts of some good-hearted people. I really don’t think I could have borne it, to see wild horses I personally know go through an auction like this.

Many of the bidders were actually experiencing that conflict and as a result made winning bids.

Is Bidding by the Auction Yard Legal?

To get this answer, I called another livestock auction yard. The owner asked that he remain anonymous, but he angrily complained that Nevada Livestock uses photos of his operation to represent theirs.

He was very proud of his clean yard and pipe pens and catwalks, that starkly contrasted with Nevada Livestock’s. He said that “their yard is a wreck, and we do not bid against bidders at sales here. It’s just not ethical.”

At his sales, “You can look at horses in pens until 20 minutes before the sale. We ask on the PA for people to leave so no one gets hurt. But, we don’t allow photos as the animals could spook and cause problems. If there was an insurance claim, photos could be used against us.”

For another opinion, I called Greg Williams of Lightning Auctions in Sparks. I knew that Greg was formerly a large animal veterinarian, and he would have an informed, unbiased opinion about the question.

“If I bid against my bidders, no one would come to my sales.” he answered. “I had a sale for some 4-H kids who had adopted and trained five wild horses. They were selling them as a project. I could not even get the opening bid of $125 for any of them! I finally bought them all, and gave them back to the kids, as there was no one else who wanted them.”

I told Greg about the wild horses selling in the sale for around $300, and Jack Payne driving up their price. He could not understand why anyone would do that.

To find out why Jack Payne was bidding against his customers, I decided I had to ask him personally. It was a bitter, cold day, and Jack was out working in the yard. I could hear the sounds of the cattle in the background of his phone. I told him I was appreciative that he would talk to me when he was in the middle of work.

“Why did the state choose your facility?”

“I don’t know.”

“How long are the horses in the yard before they’re sold?”

“They come in the night before.”

“How do you feel about the sales?”

“It’s just another commission to me, but they’ve caused a lot of controversy. I feel that if these wild horse people wanted to do good, they’d use the money for orphanages, feed hungry children. These aren’t wild horses, they’re feral. I’m bidding on them just to prove a point, and I’m donating my commissions to charity.”

He went on and talked about how he won’t allow photos or video because, “They’ll use it against you.” But, he did say one could take photos when the horses were coming in, and under the yard’s supervision. I asked him if there was something he’d like to say to the advocates. “Well, the State Brand Inspector, Blaine Northrup, was talking to one of them about the car wrecks they’ve caused, and how a child could have been killed, and they answered that they cared more about the horses than little children! They just don’t care!

“At the first auction they cussed at me, but by the second, they cleaned up their act.”

I then asked him why he was bidding on these horses?

“I have to have competitive bidding. Every sale barn I know, has owners who bid. Price is established by what two people will pay for something. At the first auction, they paid considerably more, and I’ve slacked up on them.”

I also wondered about a buyer’s commission. There is none, and the NDA pays a 5 percent seller’s commission on every lot.

I put in a call to the USDA Packers & Stockyards Administration office in Aurora, Colo., to find out if any regulations were being violated.

There is a “Prompt Payment” regulation that requires that any lot must be paid for by the close of the following business day.

What would Payne do if he was stuck with a wild horse he’d bid $200 for, but was worth only $75 to the canners? That predicament hasn’t happened, as all the lots he’s purchased, even at inflated prices, have been bought by the advocates when settling up after the auctions.

Next on my list was James Barbee, Director of the NDA. He wasn’t in, and his answering machine said he wouldn’t be back for over a week. I left a message.

Next, I called the NDA office in Elko, and they directed me to Ed Foster, their spokesman. He was not in his office, and I left a message. No one returned my calls.

Next, I turned to Shannon Windle, to see if she could answer my management questions. She told me that the estray horses are rounded up and transported to the prison in Carson City. There, they’re held for branding, micro-chipping and gelding. Any male horse a year old or older is gelded, but they’ve been known to geld foals 8-10 months old. There’s no set time for how long they’re there. They run legal advertisements in newspapers in the county seat where the horses were picked up, but all ads also run in the “Nevada Appeal.” People who might own any of the horses have five days after the ad runs to claim their horses. After that, the horses are taken to the next sale.

What About the Horses of the VC Highlands and Virginia City?

I asked Bob Maccario, of the Virginia Range Wildlife Protection Association, to comment about all of this.

He said, “The horses on the Virginia Range are under NDA control, unless they leave the Virginia Range; then they are under BLM control.We cannot do anything like birth control without their authorization. Bottom line is NDA doesn’t want the horses, doesn’t have the resources to deal with them, but tells us, under current NDA policy they cannot enter into any cooperative agreements with any of the groups so we can help. The Director of NDA has very specifically told me, ‘You have no authority to do anything as an individual or as a group (VRWPA).’ and he is correct. As a 501c nonprofit, we will always follow the laws. But we do have the authority of public opinion, and that is why we need everyone at our meetings before it is too late and the horses are removed.”

(Call Bob at 847-7390 for information)

Who is Shannon Windle, and How Can She Buy So Many Horses?

Shannon spent over an hour answering my questions about horse rescue, and I felt very privileged to be talking to someone who has taken on such a huge, costly and emotional task.

So far she has, “Spent over $49,000 on 136 horses sent to auction by the NDA, and they are boarded on private property. We get the money from donations, but barely have enough for feed and transport. Fundraising is a constant. We’ve been extremely fortunate in getting the word out, and the response from the public in northern Nevada, the United States, and around the world has been absolutely incredible. People are outraged, and that’s reflected in their financial support to save these horses. I think it’s driven by all the news about the NDA, and their constant barrage of pricing up horses. I believe the BLM has 55,000 horses in pens across the country. More than on the range, and now the Virginia Range horses are being threatened.”

I asked her how she felt about Jack Payne bidding up the prices (some for more than $600) at his sales yard.

“I wrote a complaint to the Nevada Attorney General, and he forwarded the letter to Blaine Northrup, the Brand Inspector, who brings the horses to the auction. Northrup responded that what Payne did was not unethical or against the law. It’s no different than what he does with the cattle. I told him that Payne doesn’t run up the prices of the cattle. If they were selling for a dollar a pound no one would buy them! I protested that he only ran up the prices on the estrays, but Northrup said the prices were the same as South Dakota and other states where horses were culled. I couldn’t believe that the Attorney General had the department that needed to be investigated, investigate themselves! The agency that was profiting, turned the investigation over to themselves!”

When asked about the major responsibility with these horses, Windle said, “It’s not just me, there are a lot of people involved in this, and a lot of support. Volunteers in the Reno area have grown tremendously, especially the “trailer brigade.” The township of Stagecoach has energized and organized itself and bought the eight horses who were trapped, and put up a fence along the highway. It’s not just me. I’m just a voice. None of this could have taken place without a solid network of wild horse advocates that reaches across this country and around the world. I don’t believe the NDA was prepared for this outpouring of support, nor was Governor Sandoval. I feel I play a very small role in this machine that we are creating. Our next step is to go for a sanctuary.”

But Aren’t These Nuisance Horses?

Windle “Counted 30 horses out of the 140+ horses they’ve trapped as nuisances. Only those 30 needed to be picked up and relocated. The rest were not a public safety issue. The Pleasant Valley horses that caused that big accident, have NOT been picked up. They picked up horses that were eating a woman’s lawn. She was so upset, because she’d only asked for help from the NDA in keeping them off her lawn. They weren’t horses on a highway. They also tried to trap horses way up on Toll Road. How could they be a nuisance or hazard?”

I wondered where most of the horses have been trapped.

“Stagecoach, Hidden Valley, Virginia City, Dayton, Fernley, Rhodes Rd., Damonte Ranch, and Clean Water Way.” Windle related.

What Is Going to Happen Now?

An optimistic Windle replied, “With the 18,000 letters the state has received, they should realize that the majority of the people in this state, and 80% of United States citizens, don’t want to see the horses go to slaughter. The NDA should be working with the advocates. We are willing to assist the NDA in managing them, finding out which ones are causing a public safety issue, identifying areas where these horses should be relocated, and if they become repeat offenders, then & only then, be picked up. They should be given to us so we can find homes for them. We’re 100% behind management, birth control, starting a data base, etc. and we’d use our donor money to as sist. We’d purchase the birth control supplies, computer software, and maintain a volunteer base.

“The worst thing that has happened is that communication has been lost entirely. The NDA will not communicate. If they did, they’d find that some of the beliefs they have about us are wrong. For instance, relocating the horses. I asked Northrup if he would move a group from one area to another, and he said, ‘No way, we don’t do that.’ It’s not their agenda, or one of their options, but if you manage these horses correctly with birth control, and move herds that are causing problems, you can satisfy the needs of developers, residents, and advocates who don’t want them in the streets. It’s amazing what you can accomplish. But now, there’s no communication at all, and the public is upset, and the State of Nevada gets bad publicity.

Will The Upcoming Legislative Session Deal With This?

State Sen. Mark Manendo of Las Vegas believes in setting up wild horse sanctuaries to draw visitors. He recently made public a joint resolution for this that will be introduced in this session. His resolution says, “Building eco-sanctuaries that enable the public to view and photograph wild horses and burros may provide a much-needed boost to the Nevada economy.”

Senate Joint Resolution 1, if passed by both houses of the Legislature, would not have the effect of law, but merely encourages advocates and the state and federal agencies to work together to preserve the horses.


For further information about this issue, and the entities involved, see the addresses below.
“Slaughter House Bound” Virginia City News 1-11-13

Next Week – Department of Agriculture’s Views

Click (HERE) to Comment and Support the Virginia City News

24 replies »

  1. Has anyone heard anything at all from Madleine Pickens? I don’t know why, but I suddenly have been wondering just where the heck she is!


    • i checked on her yesterday morning…and i was so elated to discover that mustang monument will open sometime this spring! she already has 560 horses she bought from the indians. in addition, she has her teepee’s built and ready for visitors. unfortunately it’s quite expensive. to stay there, it’s $1200-$1500 per night, with 2-3 night minimums! i was disappointed and shocked, but one can still visit there without spending the night. children must be 12 or older unless prior permission is obtained. i also learned that she and her husband are divorcing, apparently amicably. she’s either in northeast nevada with the horses or in del mar, ca, and he resides in texas. she’s moving forward, with or without the blm. she’s also making certain that the sanctuary will go on, even when she’s gone. she’s a true blessing for our wild ones.


      • Too bad Madeline didn’t purchase 3 strikers bound for slaughter from blm pens. 560 horses would’ve cost her no more than $14,000. She could’ve recouped her money in about 4 nights!


      • actually MP sent a rep to canon city to inspect the Adobe own SA horses that Davis was taking and for whatever reason-she did not take them..In fact those horses cost $10 a head when bought by the semi all of the adobe town horses could have been saved from slaughter..for only 2,350..a small sum for such beautiful historical horses


      • How in the name of sanity can anyone say such wonderful things about Pickens…..someone who is a traitor to our wild horses….she doesn’t give a DAMN that 3 HMA’s will be totally cleaned out of horses to make room forher “resort” Putting our NON-reproducing wild horses in ZOOS is the death sentence of the wild horse.


  2. What an experience it has been for all those involved in the rescue of the Virginia Range horses. I appreciate reading a more detailed account of what it was like for them. We are very fortunate to have people that are on the front lines willing to do whatever it takes to rescue them at auction and get them to a new safe setting. They deserve our attention , respect and support. I hope the lack of appropriate communication is resolved very soon for the sake of the horses. Bottom line, these horses that are rounded up and set in a risky auction setting are our focus. I’m very thankful for the rescue angels and all who donate to that rescue effort. Great story!


  3. It is apparent that this particular auction yard is determined to try and discourage advocates from saving the wild horses…otherwise it would benefit his business to have the natural occurring competition raise the prices of horses at his guess is that he is afraid the kill buyers will stay away from his auctions if they know there are people there to buy the horses and will outbid them for them..they can just go to sales where there are no wild horses and buy cheap…there are very few buyers but kill buyers at auctions these days, which was not the case in many years…In the light of such a sad story for all of our horses wild and domestic it is redeeming for all of us to know there are those who keep fighting..closing down all auctions would suit me fine, I suspect there are enough violations occurring, and IRS issues that could be brought to light to end all of this, and we all know..that in fact, not allowing photos is a reflection of their need to keep their actions from being exposed…while I understand people want to maintain relationships with these owners in order to save “some”,,,Its an argument most frequently heard from rescuers…hundreds of thousands are still going to slaughter…we have not enough money or people to save the majority-so it stands to reason we need to go after the owners of these facilities..many of these unscruplous action houses recognise rescuers will pay more than the going rate for horseflesh…and they are milking it,,,and I think they need to realise there are other ways to get retribution if they donot want to play fair


  4. Our horses should be turned over to us as we are rescuing them from slaughter and from either the state or BLM who want them gone. They belong to Nevadans as BLM horses do to all of us. This is absurd. This is not about adoption and taking care of the herds on their lands, this is about the removals that keep on removing. If the powers that be were not so arrogant then we would be able to do the removals ourselves and stop this high stakes game that takes our wild ones lives and families and lands. Where the hell can we have them safe and sound? Why have we not taken this campaign into Our own hands? We are not out there. We should be.

    Madeleine Pickens is the BLM. She wants to destroy 3 herds from their ranges adjacent to Spruce Ranch, zero them out, in order to have this glorified Long Term Holding Facility. We need a petition to stop her from ever receiving BLM wild horses. She has her own agenda and many connections to her are not savory. She signed on with Salazar when he was appointed. In a press release she said she applauded the Salazar Plan! She is not an advocate. She gives lip service to stopping roundups and has never helped us with what we need; funds and land for real reserves for our wild ones. She is a poser and has her own agenda.

    If she won’t join us, then Forget Madeleine Pickens!


    • Good story and I hope these journalists will be able to get a second article out on the Nevada Ag side of the hoopla. Telling folks they are being taught a lesson for being wild horse lovers is par for the course. We got the goods and this is all going to change. Keep up the pressure and stay angry and guide it to do good.


      • I just happened to be perusing photographers sites and ran across Danahey photography and discovered she had been photographing there and a couple others not employed by MP..the time frame on the photos is important..when they were that it shows the decline over what period of time…she is selective about photos she posts(MP) I am just saying..she should not be allowed to add thousands of wild horses there until she has proven she knows what she is doing, and corrects whatever problem existed..She in fact gelded dusty and paprika before they ever set foot on her ranch…in direct contradiction of what was agreed upon…that is where her “word” stands with me..If I had had a safe place to put them on the ranch away from my stallions and mares I would have brought them here in the first place


    • MP is on track to recieve thousnds of horses in her LTH facility, yet if you check the photos posted on Danehy photography of the piutes and the adobe town will see some pretty thin horses.dust in the wind hip bones sticking out..if you look at the date of the photographs you ill see the pictures of the piutes when they arrived and the photos taken by Danahy in May of 2012..the piutes were in much better shape when they arrived..the Adobes look like hell and they had been there for 6 months..If she has a problem there..she needs to get it fixed before any wild horses are housed there…I suggest that having your heart in the right place as I hear so often about many of these deals…Does not absolve you of the responsability of knowing how to care for horses..period..Deb Hurley contacted her I about us coming out to see the Adobes in july of last year and renting a TP..the horses have been contained in a “dry lot” not loose while she negotiates and waits for he BLM..apparently it is “Mustangs for Millionaires” not a means for the public to view our wild making 500 a head was not enough..Clay the ranch manager said they were not allowing people to come and take photos because of problems with photographers..yeah I can see that…I don’t see anyone with real knowledge about large herds f horses out there..Clay was her young real estate agent


      • What I saw of her place on HLN was a dust bowl and the arrival of the “hay truck” caused chaos and fighting among the horses who were obviously malnourished.


      • Her man on the ranch claimed in October that the Adobes were all well and had a large fenced pasture to roam in and that he had learned what a family band was all about from watching them. I am not sure what to believe but people need to put eyes on them and see they are all well and all foals from last year and from the arrival are accounted for. We need people in the field who can be relied on to know what they are seeing and not play games for favoritism or money. I have heard other rumors concerning the Paiute ponies and have to wonder. They were not in good shape when they arrived at Spruce ranch and they should have been after months in the pens at Nicks outside Fallon. Many rumors need to be laid to rest and I heard a slew of them at that time. The Adobes were in pretty good shape when they left Colorado and were delivered in Nevada. I have seen photos. The only time I saw pictures of Madeleine’s of them was on her website and FB site and they were not identified but they were obviously the grays from Adobe Town. I am sure you saw those pics, Sandra. And I have never heard that Madeleine had any real horse people out there overseeing the situation. Just some of her pretty boys and one who admitted he did not know anything about setting up a working ranch!


  5. I recently wrote about the NDA’s “ATM on the Hoof”. A department strapped for cash(?) can now pick up some extra dough i.e. $49,000.00 (less 5% commission) by simply grabbing some horses off the range knowing the advocates will pay dearly to save them from the kill buyers. I know more than a few people who would call this extortion.

    Barbee has said his issue has been paying the salary of someone to administer the cooperative agreements with the advocates. I think $46,550.00 would go along way to pay that salary considering the job would probably take about 15 to 20 minutes a month.

    Now for “Jack Payne in the ass”. He said he was bidding against the advocates because he wanted to ‘prove a point’. And just what would that point be? Just how low a person can go? Upping the bids to make more money for the State because he gives his commission to charity…RIGHT!

    I believe Barbee’s mindset changed once the first auction gleaned the prices paid. Before, the advocates were able to get the horses for $90.00 each. Now the State is getting $300 less 5%.


    • Yes, Steve, we have crimes committed against good people here and extortion is right on. It seems we are all getting the ‘abuses of our constitutional rights as the norm’ lecture from the very criminals themselves.


  6. This entire system for “managing” these animals is corrupt and criminal and should be shut down and entirely abolished. Nobody in the BLM or the government cares about the horses, just how much money they can put in their cashbox, and as long as this system is continued, we will always have these problems. We, as a nation of people who care about animals, have to insistently demand that these roundups be stopped and the agencies responsible for this atrocity be eliminated from existence in our government. That’s the only solution to this entire problem.


  7. Jack Payne drives up the prices because he’s a vindictive ass. Hungry children have their advocates and so do the horses. We just don’t care? Often psychopaths flip their head crap onto others. What charities does he donate his “commissions” to? Well obviously the Attorney General is in bed w/ the cattleman’s assoc. and all the other horse haters in Nevada. The extent of corruption here is pretty sickening. Will Manendo suggest non-reproducing salazoo sanctuaries too?


  8. You are kidding me? Madeleine Pickens is going to charge $1,200 to $1,500 dollars to sleep in a teepee? What? In addition to three areas wiped out? What a bunch of B.S.

    What awful state Nevada is, to let the horse bid against the wild horse. Get the horse off their quarter, it is a sham.


  9. If the horses are unbranded, they are wildlife. This is a scam that demonstrates the deep hatred for the wild horses and the advocates. The level of corruption stinks so bad I can smell it 1000’s of miles away. Payne drives up the prices to be vindictive and smiles all the way to the bank. Hungry children have their advocates and so do the horses.
    How many deer and other wildlife cause accidents on our highways each year? Are they targeted, trapped, and sold for slaughter? No. Wildlife corridors can solve that problem.
    Is Manendo proposing a non-reproducing salazoo sanctuary also?


  10. These Virginia City reporters provide an insightful & detailed account of the same slaughter auction I attended and I’m so glad they did. I was able to take phone photos without interference, but I’ve yet to force myself to even transcribe my notes. Maybe I’m too used to writing happy endings.


  11. I just looked at the photos of MPs herd & made a comment on that site(may not be the right place) – those horses look so different from any of the free wild horses. Hip bones showing – really unthrifty looking – coats dont look healthy. Some of the horses appear to be getting enough to eat – but so many look bad. Im sure these pictures dont go up on MPs site. If these were taken in August and September – they certainly should have been shed out by then! As I said on the site – if they were domestic horses – I’d think many of them had rainrot.


  12. When the horses cross the border. What companies are there? This is my only question. I really only want an answer. I don’t want comments. I don’t need any horrible stories just an answer.


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