Horse News

BLM “Spin Doctor” is “Out to Lunch”

By Debbie Coffey ~ Director of Wild Horse Affairs at Wild Horse Freedom Federation
as it appears in the PPJ Gazette ~ Copyright 2013/allrights reserved

“When wild horse advocates contacted the BLM with questions about my article and the sales of wild horses to Jim Reeves of Spur Livestock, Debbie Collins, BLM’s “Information Center Coordinator” sent an inaccurate reply…”
Voiceless Pawns by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Voiceless Pawns by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

In what could be the “perfect storm,” my last 2 articles tied together, because those busy bees in BLM made a feeble attempt to disparage my article about Spur Livestock (which has a BLM contract for a wild horse long term holding pasture and is co-owned by Jim Reeves) selling wild horses to a kill buyer and also seemed to illustrate points I made in my article about BLM public relations manipulation.

When wild horse advocates contacted the BLM with questions about my article and the sales of wild horses to Jim Reeves of Spur Livestock, Debbie Collins, BLM’s “Information Center Coordinator” sent an inaccurate reply (portions below).   Debbie Collins’ comments are in black.

My clarification is in red.

Debbie Collins (BLM)

: The BLM did sell 72 horses to Jim Reeves, of Spur Livestock, in 2008.


That’s what I said.

Debbie Collins

The BLM sold him 36 geldings on September 9, 2008, from the Palomino Valley Facility in Sparks, NV and 36 mares on September 23, 2008, from the Canon City Correctional Center in Canon City, CO.

You’ve got it backwards.  On 9/9/2008, Jim Reeves bought 36 geldings, ages 11-13, from the Canon City Maintenance Facility (prison) in Colorado and on 9/23/2008, Jim Reeves bought 36 mares, ages 11-12, from the BLM’s Palomino Valley holding facility in Nevada.

“The White Horse long-term pasture is an all-gelding facility; therefore, it would not have been possible to sell him mares from the White Horse gelding facility.”

It doesn’t matter what facility the wild horses came from.  The BLM states that they do not sell our wild horses to slaughter, but their contractor sure did.

“Since Mr. Reeves is a partner in Spur Livestock, he was strongly advised that any wild horses he purchased had to be kept completely separate from the wild horses in the White Horse long-term pasture.”

Nowhere in my article did I say the wild horses he bought WERE in the same long term pastures as wild horses, or that they were kept “together.”

“This was listed on his sales application and bill of sale.”

It is not listed on the bill of sale, signed by virtual migration person, that was sent to me in response to a FOIA requestHere is the standard language for the BLM’s Bills of Sale:

“No further sales have been made to Jim Reeve.”

Like this makes the fact that a BLM contractor sold 70 wild horses to a kill buyer okay?  The point is, Spur Livestock sold 70 BLM wild horses to Joe Simon, the kill buyer, WHILE under contract with the BLM.

“In November 30, 2009, the BLM migrated to a new Wild Horse & Burro database.  As a result, some of the pre-November 30, 2009 data did not convert identical in the new system; therefore, the signature lines on the bills of sale are showing up as “Virtual Migration Person” instead of the actual BLM authorized officer’s name.”

Does the BLM have or keep the original paper copies of signed contracts?  Please provide signed copies to the public.

“Several years ago, in an effort to show transparency, the BLM started posting facility reports to our Quick Facts page.”

The facility reports are still not posted monthly (so much for being “quick”).

“However, the reports can only reflect the data that is in entered into the system on the day the report is run.  For example, our August 5, 2008 facility report reflects that the Canon City facility(COF85) had 1,220 animals. The same location reflects 1,224 animals on October 20, 2008.  Between the August 5 and October 20 reports.”

The Canon City report I have shows the exact month and the number of horses shipped out each month , the BLM sold Jim Reeves 36 geldings from the Canon City facility and they were shipped to his South Dakota location. Were the horses shipped to Reeves at taxpayer expense?

“In addition, the Canon City facility received animals from the Sand Wash gather. They also moved some horses into the Canon City training facility(COF87) and adopted some animals.”

Collins focused on the number of horses IN the Canon City facility and horses shipped INTO the facility.  My FOIA documents show discrepancies in the number of horses SHIPPED OUT, which do not match other FOIA documents with the numbers of horses SOLD out of Canon City.

“Therefore, the analysis provided in the article about the BLM facility reports did not take into account all of the extenuating circumstances.”

The “extenuating circumstances” are so out in left field that they have nothing to do with the numbers in my article.  They also don’t mitigate the fact that BLM contractor Spur Livestock sold wild horses to a kill buyer. 

“The BLM will investigate any credible claims that horses sold by the agency have gone or are going to slaughter.”

My article has provided credible data that BLM wild horses were sold to a known kill buyer. Has the BLM initiated an investigation into Jim Reeves and Spur Livestock yet?  If so, who is leading the investigation, what is their contact information and when can we expect the results of the investigation?

“Prior to the publication of this article, the author did not contact BLM for assistance in interpreting the FOIA data they received from the BLM.”

The BLM has not addressed big questions that we all have.  For instance, “Who signed the Bill of Sale?” and “How could this happen?


36 replies »

  1. The BLM repeatedly states that they do NOT sell wild horses and burros to kill buyers but as you can see on the Brand Inspectors invoice provided in Deb Coffey’s original article at least 70 of our wild horses WERE sold to the kill buyer Joe Simons … and Spur Livestock (Jim Reeves with Lyle Anderson) who hold a BLM contract and are highly paid ($3,510,514 since 2007) for the safety and GUARDIANSHIP of our wild horses, appear to be the “middle men” in the selling of our wild horses to a known “kill buyer”? I guess this is one explanation of “getting a little extra on the side”?

    And when this sort of thing happens (apparently it has happened a lot behind our backs) there are many BLM employees who are completely aware of these sales and know where these horses are going and even assist in the sales – from the Washington D.C. office who authorize the sales all the way to the wranglers and office staff at the holding facilities. Does the phrase “dirty rotten scoundrels” come to mind?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. And to this.. I facepalmed so hard it left a mark.. the BLM is overstepping their boundaries in my opinion. Management of land doesn’t entail sale of what’s on it… you don’t see them picking up the deer/elk etc and selling em off to clear em out. they need to leave our mustangs alone. the BLM should already be sued for messing with our mustangs, It’s a federal law they are breaking, especially selling our treasures for meat and money to other nations… =_= they need a serious spanking..


    • And what’s to say that the meat from our treasures isn’t being sold back into this country under the label of beef? Our meat inspection agencies are not all on the up and up. Boycott beef and all the other meat producers in retaliation for them sporting horse slaughter. Try to defund the Ag Dept. to save taxpayer money. We’re talking budget cuts now so voice an opinion on that. Hurt their pockets and you’ll get them in line.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. No records are kept that explain the number of horses on public lands, the number of horses actually rounded up, the amount paid per head of each horse, the number of foals that die. This article is excellent, but frustrating as ever. Of course, the answers to the questions asked will always be an answer made from a list of answers already prepared by BLM – which do not have anything to do with the questions, but actually ignore the person(s) asking the questions. It still remains a fact – the BLM has been and will continue to sell horses to kill buyers unless there is a way to force the DOI to make the appropriate changes to hog tie the Sec. of Interior and stop letting the Sec. of Interior make the policies concerning the wild horses and burros. I am not sure even that would help as the SOI has been doing this for years under the approval of the DOI. As stated before, any and all investigations that has been done concerning the Department of Interior, Secretary of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, even under the Dept. of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigations or any other agency that has investigated these people have been threatened and the availability of records has been either denied or incomplete. To have an inter-department investigation is a joke – allowing the murdering creeps to investigate themselves is not going to change a thing. Of course, I am totally negative when it comes to the BLM – I have not had any response from them that has made any sense and told them to stop sending me form letters that they have already composed to answer the public when any questions or facts are sent to them regarding their criminal activity. Thanks for the article, though. I appreciate your hard work!

    Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Debbie. And great work showing the smoke screens and mirrors tactics being used by the BLM.


    • Well said Jennie ~ I have had dealings with BLM since I adopted my first 2 mustangs back in 1999, and it wasn’t good dealings! Very frustrating and very unprofessional every one of them! The lying and deceit has been a known factor for years, but proving it has been a real bugger. We all know that many, many mustangs are sold to slaughter, but why must we the public have to prove it???? Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr


  4. This is important that Debbie shared this latest volley from BLM. We all need to see how clearly, persistently, and without regard to the true issues – BLM allows their employees to attempt to discredit completely justifed questions and conclusions.

    I’m wondering if BLM has special accounting classes and english comprehension classes too.

    Thanks Debbie. Keep it coming. This is the most progress we have seen In real education on what we are dealing with for a while


  5. I think many advocates have been learning how the BLM handles the public from being at roundups and from how they are treated by the BLM, which is “the school of hard knocks.” No private company could treat people the way BLM treats people and still be in business.


    • I believe the ranchers will take this over population of wild horses into their own hands.Its getting so overpopulated that its taking jobs and livings from families and grass from cattle.Not having slaughter houses will lead to horses being shot and left and believe me its all ready going on you cant pick animals over people and their rights to make a living.The law will not make a difference your starting a war.I know this wont go on your wild horse loving blog.All we want is population control not elimination.When are you guys going to see the other side of things.


      • Rob, you must be a friend of Dave Duquette and Sue Wallis (or the BLM). You may not realize that I also write about private property rights and water rights. You don’t need to worry about the grass, you need to worry about keeping your land. Please read this article I wrote, and feel free to contact me at I’m not sure where you live, but there is no overpopulation of horses.


      • Rob – you’re kidding right? “Ranchers take matters into their own hands” – is that a threat? You got to think your position a bit more thoroughly. That is the problem now.

        So, if you’d like to share who is brave enough to be shooting the horses – well, wed be glad to have law enforcement pay them a visit and maybe have a little talk about what it takes to be a law abiding American.

        As for the cattle having to do without, that is the fault of the ranchers. They ignored rangeland management all the years since the imported and truly non native cattle and sheep themselves overpopulated and gorged on the native grasslands, reducing land which supported millions of bison and other grazing critters to land which is desert.

        so again, since you’re brave enough to tell us you ranchers are out there shooting horses – be brave enouggh to say their names.
        Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T


      • You have wild horses out there in Choteau, MT, Mr. Burdick? I think NOT so why are you complaining?

        And secondly, you raise Quarter Horses not cattle, so what’s your beef?

        Guess you just like to pick fights with the ladies from behind the security of your computer screen and send harassing notes whenever the mood moves you. Such behavior is not considered to be a very strong masculine attribute, Rob, if you get my drift.


      • So, Rob…are you talkin’ ranchers who run their stock on their OWN land or PUBLIC land? Is that ‘the other side of things’ you meant?

        There are cattlemen and then there are NOT.

        Private lands ranchers shouldn’t have a problem with wild horses because it’s rare for wild horses to run on private land, unless they’re hungry or thirsty. It isn’t rare for Public lands ranchers – guys who don’t have enough of their own land to run their stock so they run them on MINE – to snivel about wild horses eating all the grass.

        Do you even know the difference between a rancher who own his land, grows or buys food for his stock, pays for the water his stock drinks (and builds the troughs where his stock drinks from) and actually tends his animals as opposed to a Public lands rancher, who sets his animals out on the range for 7 months and then cries to the Feds when his cows die ’cause no one was watching out for them?

        As for not having slaughterhouses…stick to one subject at a time, Rob, and maybe do some thinking of your own instead of spouting off b.s. you’ve been told.


  6. Please read RT Fitch’s article about BLM’s Manipulation training….it explains a lot!!! They don’t train new employees about wild horses, they train them how to deceive the public!!


  7. If they are telling you they were sent to the prison .They are spinning for quick answers. If these are long term inmates ` meaning they have nothing to lose. They would probably just tell you about the horses if they went there. They are just saying it went into a deep dark hole and bah bah bah…. I would wait to see if they public can apply pressure in the media. It is worth the wait and I also think this is a battle with the dark of humans which is greed. I think war on words is useless with them. Greed is only concurred by hitting them in the pocket book.Toss out meatless Mondays and watch them curl. Ask them why beef is increasing in a country wide drought is it because of other mystery meat is added/
    All is far…Then tell them the antichrist symbol has arrived it looks like a horse and it has the face of a human. That is because we love wild horses and horses/burros we care. Well will protest to protect wild horses/and other burros & horses by going organic or meatless. We will become a force and protest and we will not eat the flesh of muti -species that sometimes are called beef patties!! Then walk away band together and protest mystery beef which is our brother our sister our family. Thank God we have horses and burros to reflect because humans good or bad protect their families.


  8. The BLM has been lying to the public 100% of what they do to and with the horse’s, they can spin it all they want, but Wild Horse Advocates are demanding accountability. I want to Thank all those who do not give in or up!


  9. WOW! Just a big wow on the nonsensical, gobble-d-gook speak that is our elected and hired officials.

    And this moron gets PAID????? With MY (and your) money????

    Good Lord, we need a miracle.

    I can eat poop for only so long….especially when I am witnessing a holocaust.

    Thanks again Debbie…..

    p.s. They really are stupid or incompetent or flat out evil, aren’t they (probably all three)?


  10. And the game goes on with these pathological liars (the BLM). Buy who is going to stop it? Who? The president won’t do it, he’s too busy pacifying the babies in Congress. Still trying to work with those hard heads. Stupid people keep voting them back in. The wildlife in this country is doomed, all set for extinction.


  11. This is an email that I had sent to BLM reguarding their website listed adoption page. Since we know they have thousands of horses, they only list around 2 dozen on their website. My first message STARTS AT THE BOTTOM, then their response & my response. I never received another email from them.

    To: “BLM_ES_Inet_Adoption” Hello,
    I’ve been checking your site for over a year & never see more than maybe 2 dozen photos up there. Maybe just common sense, but I would think you would want more adopted, before rounding up & bringing in more horses. If you’ve held horses for years I would think the staff would be able to find a day or two to take photos and post them. I think the taxpayers would be happier to see more horses adopted. Appreciate the response.
    Thank you,

    BLM response:
    Photos are sent in from Facility Managers as their schedules allow, and Shipping Coordinator arranges for transportation between the participating facilities to eastern locations. The corral staff are also busy gathering, freezebranding, castrating, worming, vaccinating, feeding, etc. More photos and holding facility information are located on the Facility Photos page.

    Internet Adoption Program

    800 370-3936

    Hello. I was looking at the horses you have on your website for adoption. You have listed about 20-25. I know you all are holding thousands or tens of thousands. Why are they not listed?!? If you want people to adopt them, their photos should be up there and listed on your site. What is up with that?

    I would appreciate a response.

    Thank you,


  12. we really think we would get a rational answer. Excellent point that only a select number are put up on the website. Each private welfare rancher and facility should be photographing and detaiing the horses on their site. I guess that would be too logical and efficient to know how many and where all the horses are located. We all know why this is done..If they sell off 100’s of horses/burros there is no paper trail. Oh, and lets give some to our rancher friends so they can send them to slaughter. If they didn;t spend so much money rounding them up in the thousands maybe they would have time to accurately account for them. I sent an email so Senator Durbin yesterday asking for a Congressional Inquiry and accounting of all the horses/burros at each facility/private ranch. Do they really think we all our that stupid? They must be total block heads…
    Lets all keep the HEAT on. Sooner or later our Congressional leaders are going to be demanding answers. I keep my fingers crossed that Raul is appointed the next Secretary of the Interior


  13. Excerpts:

    BLM employees and private contractors ignore the law, are cruel and abusive to the animals, while contriving false excuses as to why the roundups exist in the first place. Ultimately, BLM administrators cover these questionable acts of abuse up, and move along in this mode of unethical behavior as if the horses are not going to slaughter, rather, to adoption. BLM employee self-deception exists here, unfortunately from the BLM leadership spiraling out of control and downward.
    Follow the Money Trail

    Some taxpayers consider this to be a fraudulent land grab by the BLM, combined with corporate and rancher’s payoffs. This is in direct conflict to not only the management of the taxpayer’s lands, but certainly irresponsible management of, in particular, “Our Wild Horse Herds –America’s Wild Horses.”

    The Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) data gathering process and predictions are created upon faulty interpretation, and often done by guess work, or summerizing estimated percentages as actual head count data.

    Supposedly there does exist a formula, “available feed per acre = horse herd size” (i.e. afpa x hhs = data), but even this becomes a random equation manipulated by ambiguous orders from Administrators located on the east coast, most often politically driven. Yes, no matter how they attempt to disconect themselves from this onslot of horse slaughter, they are the guilty parties. To assume the BLM is a profitable enterprise within the government makes even less sense, and a short persual of expenditures shows this as fact. Yet another outright Lie given to the public by BLM employees.

    No Reason for a Round Up
    This journalist can attest to the fact there was, and remains, more than enough land for cattle grazing, multi-purpose sport use, as well as simply leaving the Wild Horse Herd alone. In this journalist’s perception, perhaps a total amount of herd-growth could comfortably be 150 to 200 horses in total, and certainly not out of the question in this HMA. The seasonal grass and feed usage would essentially be unhampered by a larger Wild Horse Herd size, with no compromise toward the ranching of domestic cattle in feed and grazing attributes


  14. “the signature lines on the bills of sale are showing up as “Virtual Migration Person” instead of the actual BLM authorized officer’s name.”

    the disapearence of the authorising BLM partys signature-is hardly satisfactory..there exists a record which they are chosing to hide….This is why the BLM does not do well in frount of a judge in federal court being cross examined by an expert attorney..where there are consequences to trying to mislead a judge about the facts..they consistantly get called out on it..reading the transcripts from WWPs like an episode of keystone cops..the one thing BLM cannot find….is the truth


  15. this is the same government that eliminated the Indians from there homes and land. this is the same government that kept the Black man in slavery, the same government that would have let our land and resources be devasted by industry if not for incredible efforts by ansel adams, John Muir to name a few. anytime govt’ officials can gain power and money by manipulation they do it. the BLM appears to lack ethics,a moral compass to do good. like Sandra said, they need to lie to a judge in a court of law


  16. Debbie Collins has and continues to be a major embarrassment to the BLM…an agency that is really hard to embarrass. A one time Petroleum Engineering Technician who was worthless at that position is now even more worthless in the WH&B program. And she receives an annual salary of $90,000 for being incompetent.


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