Horse News

Action Alert: Comment on BLM’s Removal Plan for Youngsters from Cloud’s Herd

Information provided by The Cloud Foundation

The BLM is seeking your comments on their proposal to remove “up to 25” young horses from the range starting this year.

Cloud and Encore ~ Photo by Carol Walker of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Cloud and Encore – photo by Carol Walker of Wild Horse Freedom FederationBackground: The Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range (PMWHR is a spectacular wilderness but a high percentage of the 39,651 acres is rocky and unproductive for grazing. The herd now exceeds 160 adult horses. Without range expansion which TCF actively pursues, there must be some limited removals to ensure that the range continues to support the herd. There are no livestock on the range. The BLM is seeking your comments on their proposal to remove “up to 25” young horses from the range starting this year.

Because BLM’s email system is inadequate to accept large volumes of correspondence they request that you send a snail mail letter. Please formulate a polite letter in your own words. Here are some points to make:

  • Strongly Encourage BLM to adopt Alternative A, which calls for small, incremental removals as opposed to one large removal. Alternative A comes in response to suggestions made by responders to the Scoping document.
  • Ask that a time limit of three years be placed on these small removals, then assess whether further removals are needed based on the new PZP protocols as well as unpredictable limiting factors (i.e. weather/predation).
  • Remove no more than 6-10 young animals in any one year, so all the horses removed will have the opportunity to find good homes and the fragile genetics of this unique Spanish herd are not placed in jeopardy.
  • Do not eliminate the yearlings from the removal protocol. Yearlings are traditionally the most easily adopted, and adapt more readily to a domestic setting. Spreading the limited removals over mainly the yearling and two-year old quadrants will ensure that no unique animals will be removed and that the horses will be more likely to find homes and successfully adapt to a domestic life.
  • Remove as few three year-old as possible. Many three year-old fillies are settling in to life with their new bands and most three year-old males have become bachelor stallions, honing the skills they will need to one day win a mare. Because of this and their age, three year-olds typically require more time and expertise to gentle and train than most yearlings and two year-olds.
  • Do not remove any young horse that threatens the loss of a genetic line.
  • Do not remove any young horse that threatens the loss of a color. Encore is a low priority based on her sex and color. Mato Ska is the only blaze-faced roan that has ever been born on the Pryor Mountains to our knowledge. Palominos, Blue Roans and Buckskins are rare colors that must be preserved.
  • Please acknowledge that we appreciate being listened to!

Send your letter postmarked by June 6 to:
BLM Billings Field Office
Attn: Jared Bybee
5001 Southgate Drive
Billings, Mt. 49101-4669

For More Information call Jared Bybee: 406-896-5223
Environmental Assessment.
BLM Press Release
TCF Action Alert on Scoping Notice

31 replies »

  1. The BLM has a descimination Plan, they will always try to dance around this fact and if anyone thinks this will change , are very sadly mistaken by the Blatent lies, never through all of this has there been any concrete reason to remove any Mustangs from their Land other then pure GREED>…………………The BLM needs to be stripped and dismantled and replaced, anything other then that , the eradification continues……………………………


  2. Mother Nature and natural selection should be used to manage wild horses and burros on all HMAs. Artificial, man made boundaries are what hurts these herds. The BLM should not remove any horses from this area, or any other HMA based on their faulty, greed driven system of determining a maximum number of animals allowed. There is also no need for the use of PZP on any wild horses as no overpopulation exists. Overpopulation of wild horses and burros is a fantasy of the BLM which they use to justify the millions of dollars that they spend annually on roundups and warehousing. There are fewer than 30,000 wild horses left in the wild on millions of acres of public lands, while the BLM has over 50,000 wild horses in holding facilities. They quietly funnel some of these horses to slaughter every year. The BLM has already proven to be one of the most corrupt agencies of the government, so believing that they will ethically follow any suggestions from those who actually care about the wild horses is a pipe dream at best.


  3. Very well said, Vickie McClintock … although I would like to add that pipe dream or not, the wild ones cannot afford to have a single one of us give up, including writing public comments or doing anything else that we can.


    • Agreed, Grandma Gregg! I will never give up on them. Every single horse saved is a victory and I will continue to fight. My goal is to keep spreading the word to all those who have no clue what destruction their tax dollars are paying for at the hands of a corrupt government agency. Of course, I also like to let them know about the US Fish & Wildlife Services killing millions of animals needlessly every year, including people’s pets. It seems that most average citizens have no idea what is going on and how their tax dollars are being wasted (to keep the wealthy, wealthy). Three strike horses are being sold for as little as $25 to questionable buyers, and many go unaccounted for. The Burns Amendment needs to be repealed, the SAFE Act needs to be passed, and government agencies need to be held accountable for following the law.


    • I agree, grandmagregg. We all have to keep trying. Not one of us can give up the fight. I, personally, am in this for the duration.


  4. This Herd is already showing signs of genetic decline. To remove ANY would be criminal.

    For over thirty years, the genetics of the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Herd have been tracked by foremost equine geneticist, E. Gus Cothran. His first revelations linking the herd to the horses of the Spanish Conquistadors and Old World Iberian Horses were cause for celebration among local supporters of the herd who long believed that the primitive physical appearance of some Pryor horses were indicators of their Spanish ancestry. Cothran also indicated in earlier reports that the genetic diversity of the herd was good.

    But Cothran’s newest report issued on August 22, 2013 reveals a herd at risk of losing genetic variability. Cothran states that “compared to past sampling of this herd, variability levels for all measures has been in decline.” He further states that the expression of the Spanish heritage is “stronger than seen recently,” but we could be seeing “the very beginning of evidence of inbreeding

    Click to access Pryor_MNTS%202012%20Genetic%20Report.pdf


  5. If the BLM Billings office has enough funds available for a capture and removal operation, then they certainly should have enough funds to afford an adequate email system.
    Send letters so that a signature is requested upon delivery
    Some pieces of mail require a signature from the recipient at the time of delivery. This includes items sent with Priority Mail Express, Certified Mail, Collect on Delivery


    • It’s probably more of a “paper” issue that they have to print every email, every attachment, etc. to compile the administrative record. If they require that all comments be mailed in, that saves them money. I don’t think it has anything to do with an “inadequate email system.” Because my name, address, & personal information is now on file with the Billings BLM office (I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to share it), I received a copy of this notice via US mail about 3 weeks ago. Granted it was only a 1-page letter/notice, they had printing costs & mail costs associated with it. I DO AGREE with Louie C that you should send it by means of requiring a SIGNATURE.


  6. I think that you need to leave them on the range that was sit aside for them back in the 70’s and quit trying to do every thing you can to help the big ranchers that want the horse land!


  7. These horses have more of a right to be on this land they love and roam then the cruel people who are removing them.
    Have we learned nothing from our past destruction?
    Leave them alone!


    • Agree, Renee Reising! These horses have more of a right to be on this land than any welfare rancher, any politician, any fracking opportunist, any greedy exploiter of the West. The West is being raped by greed every single day.


  8. I just hope that the necessity of writing a letter & actually printing it out and mailing it doesn’t prevent anyone from commenting on this. And no, Renee, we (humans) do not learn anything from past destruction! How shameful is that? Just look at the manipulations going on to prevent the grouse from being listed as endangered, along with any other animal species that is now in danger – as are our wild horses & burros!


    • BLM – Billings Field Office
      Attn: Jim Sparks, Field Manager
      5001 Southgate Drive
      Billings, MT 59101-4669

      Due in their office this Friday – better mail your letter today!
      (Only taking USPS comments)


      • Letter written, envelope addressed. Made a copy of the letter so I know exactly what I said. Bastards – of course I didn’t say that in the letter!


  9. My letter from Jim Sparks’ office says Saturday, June 6, 2015 is the due date for comments. Has that changed?


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