Secretive Slaughter Summit speakers slither out from under a rock

The National Horse & Burro Rangeland Management Coalition has released the videos of speakers from their “Slaughter Summit” that was recently held in Salt Lake City, Utah.  In a video that initially looks like the speaker is a talking hat and beard, we soon see it is actually John Ruhs, who is the Bureau of Land Management’s Nevada State Director and the BLM’s Acting Deputy Director of Operations.  You can watch this video HERE.

  John Ruhs

 Yes, John, there IS something wrong.  The wild horses & burros wouldn’t cost taxpayers “$50 million” a year if the BLM would manage wild horses and burros on the range, and we can save this money and solve this “problem” if the BLM would give back the 22 million acres of federally protected Herd Areas that the BLM took away from the wild horses and burros, (where they were grazing for free) and return all wild horses and burros that are currently in BLM holding facilities back on this land.  By the way, J.J. Goicoechea, 4th generation rancher and Nevada state veterinarian, is also a speaker on this video, and can be seen about 52 minutes into the presentation.

Well known Wild Horse Hater Callie Hendrickson can be seen HERE, at about 1 hr. and 4 minutes into the presentation.

You can watch Karen Budd-Falen, a prospective Trump choice to lead the BLM, HERE.

Rabid proponent of horse slaughter, The Wildlife Society, claims that “Over 100 groups representing youth, educators, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), Native American tribes, wildlife management and conservation groups, environmental organizations, public and private land managers, and horse advocates attended…” the Slaughter Summit.

But Ginger Kathrens, Exec. Dir. of The Cloud Foundation and member of BLM’s National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board, was not invited to attend.

No list has been provided to the public of the “100 groups” that were invited to attend this Summit.  You’d think that if these groups were so proud of what they were doing, they’d be proud to come out from under their rocks.

Here’s a list of the Steering Committee (the group that “invited other parties and helped determine the content of the Summit”):

Arizona Sportsmen
Audubon Society
Beaver County Commission
Berryman Institute
Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus
Idaho Wildlife Federation
National Horse and Burro Rangeland Management Coalition
Nevada Division of Wildlife
Oregon Cattlemen’s Association
Society for Range Management
Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife
The Wildlife Society
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
University of Wyoming
Utah Department of Natural Resources
Utah Public Lands Policy Coordination Office
Utah State University Extension
Western Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies
Western Landowners Alliance
White River and Douglas Creek Conservation Districts
Wyoming State Grazing Board

John Holland (Pres., Equine Welfare Alliance) and Simone Netherlands (Pres., Salt River Wild Horse Management Group) on Dept. of Interior’s plan to kill over 46,000 wild horses in BLM facilities and on public lands, and on fighting against horse slaughter in the U.S., on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., 9/13/17)

painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, this Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2017

5:00 p.m. PST … 6:00 p.m. MST … 7:00 p.m. CST … 8:00 p.m. EST

Listen to the archived show (HERE!)

You can also listen to the show on your phone by calling (917) 388-4520.

You can call in with questions during the 2nd half hour, by dialing (917) 388-4520, then pressing 1.

This show will be archived so you can listen to it anytime.

Our guests tonight are John Holland, Pres. of Equine Welfare Alliance and Simone Netherlands (Pres. of The Salt River Wild Horse Management Group, and Spokeswoman for American Wild Horse Campaign).  They will be talking about issues including stopping horse slaughter from being approved in the U.S., and the Dept. of the Interior’s language in the 2018 Budget to kill over 46,000 wild horses & burros in holding, and tens of thousands more on public lands.

Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA), is a dues free, all volunteer 501(c)(3) umbrella organization representing over 330 member organizations, over 1,200 individual members worldwide in 23 countries and the Southern Cherokee Government. EWA is dedicated to ending the slaughter of American horses and the preservation and protection of Wild Horses & Burros on public lands.

The Salt River Wild Horse Management Group (SRWHMG) is an Arizona-based nonprofit organization dedicated to monitoring, studying and protecting the Salt River wild horses.

Advocates of Arizona’s wild horses delivered a 300,000-signature petition to Sen. Jeff Flake’s office in Phoenix, opposing the mass killing of federally protected horses and burros across the U.S.

The treatment tank at the Cavel horse slaughterhouse in DeKalb, IL, taken just months before it closed in 2007. Cavel was never in compliance on its discharge during its period of operation.

This show will be co-hosted by R.T. Fitch (Pres.) and Debbie Coffey (V.P. and Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs) of Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

To contact us: ppj1@hush.com, or call 320-281-0585

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/marti-oakley/2017/09/14/john-holland-pres-equine-welfare-alliance-and-simone-netherlands

TO LISTEN TO ALL ARCHIVED WILD HORSE & BURRO RADIO SHOWS, CLICK HERE. Continue reading

Wild Horse and Burro Hater Zinke continues to add lobbyists and DC insiders to Interior

Source: Western Values Project.org

Ahead of potential confirmation votes, check out profiles of Interior nominees at https://departmentofinfluence.org/

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is expected to vote on the nominations of Joseph Balash and Ryan Nelson to the Interior Department. Ahead of the vote, Western Values Project has taken a look at how the revolving door continues to spin between special interests, their lobbyists, and Secretary Ryan Zinke’s Interior Department.

Both nominees have been well documented on Western Values Project’s website for their lengthy histories of favoring big donors and special interests.

“Secretary Zinke is continuing to fill his cabinet with special interests and Washington insiders. While Interior continues to stack the deck with staff from the oil and gas industry, they seem set on ignoring the outdoor industry that our communities rely on. That explains why sportsmen, hunters and anglers are turning against the Secretary,” said Chris Saeger, Executive Director of the Western Values Project. “Balash and Nelson are merely the latest examples of Zinke’s refusal to keep his promise to preserve public lands and uphold his Montana values. With these nominations, it’s abundantly clear that Secretary Zinke does not value the outdoor heritage and public lands that communities in the West rely on.”

Joseph Balash

Joseph Balash, nominated to be assistant secretary of the Interior, land and minerals management, has a long history of favoring special interests over people in his home state of Alaska. In 2013, Balash was cited as one of the “key players on Gov. Sean Parnell’s bill to lower oil taxes.” In 2014, Balash used his time as the commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources to claim nearly 20,000 acres of the National Arctic and Wildlife Refuge to be offered for oil and gas leasing. He then approved lowered royalty rates on several leases operated by oil company Caelus Energy.

Ryan Nelson
Ryan Nelson, nominated to be solicitor of the Interior, has a background in using power to silence critics. During the George W. Bush administration, Nelson used his time as deputy attorney general for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division to argue against environmental groups and activists. Nelson has since spent his time in the private sector acting as general counsel to the health care product company Melaleuca, Inc. and its CEO Frank VanderSloot. Both Melaleuca and VanderSloot have used lawsuits and other bullying tactics to attack journalists and other critics.

http://westernvaluesproject.org/zinke-continues-to-add-lobbyists-and-dc-insiders-to-interior/

BLM Releases Decision Record plan to wipe out the Red Desert Complex after they destroy the Checkerboard

by Carol Walker, Dir. of Field Documentation, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

BLM has announced it will be removing 2200 wild horses from the Red Desert Complex, starting in October 2017.  This would be after the Checkerboard Roundup, where the BLM is planning to remove 1560 wild horses starting in September.  This means 3760 wild horses will be removed from their homes and from their families, and this is over half the wild horses remaining in Wyoming.

This is insane.  Right now, Congress is considering the 2018 Budget which now includes language that will allow the killing of the 46,000 wild horses in short and long term holding as well as thousands more on the range.

Adding 3760 more horses makes absolutely no sense.  There is nowhere to even put this number of horses in short term holding unless the BLM has already begun shipping wild horses in holding to slaughter.

Rounding up and removing these horses is a death sentence to them if this budget passes without an amendment to protect the horses.

In the Red Desert Complex, the 5 herds will all be reduced to numbers below the 150-200 adults needed to maintain genetic viability. Stewart Creek will be at 150, Lost Creek at 60, Antelope Hills at 60 Crooks Mountain at 65 and Green Mountain will be left at the closest to the number needed, at 170.

The rationale is that the horses travel back and forth between areas so they consider the Complex as a whole at 480 wild horses.  But I dispute this.  There may be some mixing of the members of herds at the boundaries, but these are vast areas and horses tend to be territorial – they cannot guarantee that the horses will mix sufficiently to maintain genetic viability.  There is data provided on each herd’s genetic viability but most of this is very old data, not from the most recent roundup in 2011 and 2012.

Then they plan to use PZP-22 on all mares over 1 year old that are released back into the area.

This is a recipe for destroying these unique herds, not preserving them.

The BLM is making the worst possible decisions for the wild horses under their care, as they have been for decades.

Be sure to read Carol Walker’s blog, Wild Hoofbeats.

The Audacity of Horse Killers & How They Could Win

Magnificent Nelson, rescued Wild American Mustang, © Photo by Terry Fitch

By Susan Wagner, Pres. of Equine Advocates

It is quite unbelievable that in the midst of all the turmoil taking place in our country now due to natural disasters that horse slaughter proponents in the House of Representatives and the special interests from whom they take their marching orders would move to satisfy their deadly agendas by voting to kill the more than 46,000 healthy Wild Horses and Burros being held captive in BLM holding facilities.

The Stewart Amendment, inserted in the House Omnibus Bill by Rep. Chris Stewart of Utah, allows for the killing and sale “without regulation or limitation” (meaning to slaughter) of Wild Horses and Burros, thus removing any remaining federal protections they have.

The only hope left for these animals is for the U.S. Senate to act to protect them by passing the Udall-Graham Amendment. Senators Tom Udall of New Mexico and Lindsay Graham of South Carolina will introduce this amendment during the mark-up session of the Interior Appropriations Bill which would prevent the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) from going through with these murderous acts.

This is literally now a matter of life and death for these animals and the last chance to stop the pro-horse slaughter factions of our government from carrying out their heinous agendas which also includes the return of horse slaughter to U.S. soil.

What We All Must Do:

• Please call and fax the members of the Senate Appropriations Committee asking that they vote for the Udall-Graham Amendment. Emails are not effective at all. Faxing and following up by calling them are the most effective ways to reach these members. Please see the full listing of the members below.
• Fax and call your own two U.S. Senators even if they are not on the Appropriations Committee and ask them to support the Udall-Graham Amendment. Tell them that you want America’s Wild Horses and Burros to be protected and preserved, not slaughtered, killed, “euthanized” or sold “without regulation or limitation” which means, slaughter! Also tell them that you oppose the return of horse slaughter to the United States and support a permanent ban on this horrendous practice.

(FYI – There are free online faxing services that you can use including Fax Zero and Got Free Fax.)

I know this is a lot to ask, especially during this time of national crisis. However, those who are committed to destroying America’s last remaining Wild Horses and Burros will stop at nothing until these animals are extinct. They do not care about anything except the greed that drives them. They want the horses gone and they want to be able to slaughter any wild or domestic equine at will despite the fact that the vast majority of Americans are opposed to horse slaughter and support the preservation and protection of our Wild Horses and Burros.

Thank you for taking action. Stay tuned for new developments.

SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE

PHONE & FAX NUMBERS

(CHAIR) Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) 202-224-5054   202-224-9450
Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) 202-224-5744   202-224-3416
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) 202-224-6665   202-224-5301
Sen. John Boozman (R-AR) 202-224-4843   202-228-1371
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) 202-224-3841   202-228-3954
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) 202-224-4041   202-224-9750
Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) 202-224-5042   202-228-3075
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) 202-224-3041   202-228-0285
Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HW) 202-224-3934   202-228-1153
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) 202-224-2152   202-228-0400
Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) 202-224-6521   202-228-6966
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KS) 202-224-2541   202-224-2499
Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) 202-224-4623   202-228-0447
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) 202-224-2523   202-224-2693
Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) 202-224-4654   202-228-0629
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) 202-224-5721   202-224-8149
Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) 202-224-2644   202-224-8594
Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) 202-224-2651   202-228-1236
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) 202-224-2841   202-228-3194
Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND) 202-224-2551   202-224-7999
Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) 202-224-5754   202-228-1015
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) 202-224-3753   202-228-3997
Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) 202-224-4642   202-224-4680
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) 202-224-4944   202-228-3398 (Big Pro-Horse Slaughter Supporter)
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) 202-224-0238   202-224-3479
Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) 202-224-2621   202-224-0238
Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) 202-224-5653   202-224-9787
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) 202-224-6472   202-224-7665
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) 202-224-3954  202-228-0002

Please only call Senators Udall and Graham to thank them for the Udall-Graham Amendment:

Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) 202-224-6621   202-228-3261                                                                                                                                           Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) 202-224-5972   202-224-3808

The Big Win in Wyoming

Source: Western Watersheds Project

Welfare Ranchers Get a Boot in the Butt!!!

Western Watersheds Project is not primarily known for its defense of the U.S. Constitution. We tend to focus on federal laws and policies relating to the environment and public lands. But now, thanks to a Tenth Circuit Court win and a successful but protracted battle in Wyoming, you can count us among the defenders of free speech!

It all started when Jonathan Ratner, our dedicated Wyoming Director, started gathering evidence of livestock-caused water pollution on public lands and submitting his data to the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). His results of significant fecal coliform contamination were so threatening to the political establishment of the “Cowboy State” that rather than clean up the water, Wyoming ranchers started to seek ways to shut us up.

In 2014, anti-environmental attorney (and potential Trump pick to lead the Bureau of Land Management) Karen Budd-Falen and a group of ranchers claimed Jonathan must have trespassed on their private property in order to gather water quality samples from public lands grazing allotments. She wound up the loser. This frivolous lawsuit was resolved in 2016 through a settlement agreement that ultimately penalized the ranchers through their legal fees, and WWP agreeing to follow the same laws it always follows regarding private lands.

Then, in 2015, the Wyoming DEQ decided not to accept any of WWP’s data: “Any submission submitted by such organizations should not be accepted due to their inherent bias towards one of Wyoming’s leading economic industries.” If an organization cares about water quality and native fish habitat more than cows, the data be damned.

Also that year, the DEQ decided to change the rules about E.coli in 76 percent of the waterways in the state – effectively legalizing the extreme pollution levels that Jonathan had been documenting. The rule change, requested by the livestock industry, went into effect in February 2017 despite broad opposition by non-ranchers, recreational users, and federal land management agencies.

In addition to working against WWP and the public’s interest in healthy waterways, the Wyoming State Legislature decided to take special interests’ right to wreck the environment to another level by passing legislation making it illegal to cross “open land for the purpose of collecting resource data.” WWP and our allies were alarmed by the fact that the laws – dubbed “Jonathan’s Laws” by our staff – would seek specifically to punish people who intend to communicate data to the government; this is a restriction on free speech and targets a specific class of citizens (data collectors) in a way that the U.S. Constitution prohibits.

After the Wyoming legislature modified the laws in 2016, Wyoming had our case in District Court dismissed. But WWP and our co-plaintiffs weren’t fooled by the tweaks in language, and we appealed the case to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the lower court’s dismissal and concluded that plain reading of the statute demonstrated that Wyoming was seeking to regulate an activity that occurred on public land and that resource data collection is within the definition of the creation of speech – protected under the First Amendment and essential to public participation in numerous federal environmental statutes. The case now goes back to district court.

Wyoming counties have also taken up the charge to block public access in public lands. In Lincoln County, for years the public used a county road to reach the Raymond Mountain Wilderness Study Area on public lands. In 2013, the county sold a strip of land along the road to an Idaho rancher and subsequently made the private portion of the road impassable. According to emails revealed in litigation, this was done specifically to block WWP’s access to a long-troubled grazing allotment.

WWP is enormously grateful to our attorneys at Public Justice and our co-plaintiffs National Press Photographers Association and Natural Resource Defense Council for standing with us on this appeal. We’re also enormously proud of Jonathan Ratner’s work to expose and address the harmful impacts of public lands livestock grazing in the “Cowboy State.”

While we wait for this next round of litigation, we hope that Wyoming’s next move is simply to clean up its act and stop letting the livestock industry foul the state’s precious waters with impunity. 

https://www.westernwatersheds.org/

BLM’s Sally Spencer, who authorized sale of about 1,000 wild horses to kill buyer Tom Davis, gets “promoted” to Acting District Manager

Source:  eplanning.blm.gov

BLM’s Sally J. Spencer

by Debbie Coffey, V.P. & Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Sally Spencer, as the Supervisory Marketing Specialist for the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse & Burro Program, personally authorized the sale of almost 1,000 of the wild horses (that ended up going to slaughter) to kill buyer Tom Davis.  Spencer was also willing to sell 10,000 wild horses to slaughter in Canada.   In 2017, Sally Spencer signed a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for an oil and gas lease sale, as the “Acting District Manager” for BLM’s Southeastern States District Office.

The BLM must’ve been very happy with Spencer’s work selling wild horses & burros to slaughter, to allow her to be an Acting District Manager and make major decisions about selling off our public lands.

FONSI signed by Sally J. Spencer as Acting District Manager (see the entire FONSI HERE.)

Bill of Sale to kill buyer Tom Davis signed by Sally J. Spencer (note: the year at the top of the document is 2012, and the year by Tom Davis’ signature is 2012, BUT, Sally Spencer wrote in the year as 2011.)

Action alert: focus your fight to save our wild horses & burros on the Senate

Our thanks to Representatives Dina Titus (D-Nevada), Peter King (R-New York), Jared Polis, (D-Colorado), Carlos Curbelo (R-Florida) and Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-New Mexico) for their efforts and for sponsoring the House Amendments that would have stopped the slaughter of tens of thousands of our wild horses and burros.

Unfortunately, the House Committee on Rules has voted down the amendments that were introduced to stop horse slaughter and the killing of tens of thousands of wild horses and burros.  The House Committee on Rules stopped these amendments from going to the House floor for a vote by all Representatives.

Our fight is not over.  We need to focus on the Senate.

Please fax (your letter will get to them quickly) even a simple handwritten note and/or make phone calls to your Senators, and tell them you are a constituent and:

1) you do NOT want our wild horses and burros to be killed, “euthanized” or sterilized.

2) Do NOT remove the sales restrictions that protect our wild horses and burros from being sold into the slaughter pipeline.

3) you do NOT want horse slaughter in the U.S.

Share this message with your friends and on social media and ask everyone to take action to save the lives of tens of thousands of wild horses and burros in BLM holding facilities and on our public lands.  And ask them to share this message, too. 

We need many voices to save our wild horses and burros.

Also, our thanks to Representatives Vern Buchanan (R-Florida), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-California), Ed Royce (R-California), and Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon),  for introducing the bipartisan amendment to the Agriculture Appropriations bill that would bar the U.S. Department of Agriculture from funding horsemeat inspectors.

THE TRUTH #8 – The BLM’s own records indicate its plans for sterilizations and non-reproducing herds for wild horses & burros could be challenged by law

Wild Horse Freedom Federation issues THE TRUTH to share Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) documents and information with the public. Be sure to subscribe HERE to Wild Horse Freedom Federation, so that you can receive email alerts.

THE TRUTH #8 – The BLM’s own records indicate its plans for sterilizations and non-reproducing herds for wild horses & burros could be challenged by law.

Note the following “LIMITATIONS AND BARRIERS” in the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) records below, and then note the “NEEDS” in the column on the far right, where they even state they need a “clarification” in the WH & B Act to indicate that non-reproducing herds are acceptable. And that they also need a “Change to the WH & B regulations to eliminate the phrase ‘Shall be managed as self-sustaining populations.'”

There is no question that the BLM intends to manage to wild horses & burros to extinction.

Here are a few “population suppression methods” with the BLM’s comments in italics:

Regarding Non-Reproductive or Minimally Reproducing Herd“Certain litigation challenge WH & B regulation states to manage for sustainable populations. Solicitors indicate this presents gray area of uncharted waters to navigate legal challenge.”

Regarding Ovariectomy“Likely to be litigated. Challenges are presented because ovariectomies conducted in first 100 days of conception have been shown to cause spontaneous abortions. About 75% of captured mares are pregnant. Spaying is traditionally conducted in sterile surgery room on non-pregnant domestic mares, and is considered highly invasive. Has been conducted on experimental basis in field Sheldon Wildlife Refuge wild mares, but no data were recorded on mortality or rate of abortions.”

Regarding Non-Reproductive Herd Components“Certain legal challenges. Higher controversy if ovariectomy is involved. Unknown behavioral effects.”

Regarding the fertility control SpayVac“Unknown efficacy and unknown exact mechanism of action. Field trials will be litigated w/o further data from pen trials.”

Read the rest of this article and see the FOIA documents HERE.

Be sure to subscribe HERE to Wild Horse Freedom Federation, so that you can receive email alerts.

Russ Mead, Esq., V.P. and General Counsel of Animal Law Coalition, talks about wild horses & burros and advocacy, on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., 9/6/17)

painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, this Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2017

5:00 p.m. PST … 6:00 p.m. MST … 7:00 p.m. CST … 8:00 p.m. EST

Listen to the archived show (HERE!)

You can also listen to the show on your phone by calling (917) 388-4520.

You can call in with questions during the 2nd half hour, by dialing (917) 388-4520, then pressing 1.

This show will be archived so you can listen to it anytime.

Our guest tonight is RUSS MEAD, Esq., the Vice President & General Counsel of Animal Law Coalition, a 501(c)4 that lobbies for legislation in support of animal welfare. Its mission is to advocate for animals to live free of cruelty and neglect. His legislative advocacy work includes grass roots organizing, lobbying, and media promotion.  Russ talks about wild horses & burros and advocacy.

Russ has served as General Counsel for two of the nation’s leading non-profit animal sanctuaries: Best Friends Animal Society, the largest no kill companion animal sanctuary in the U.S. and Farm Sanctuary, the first farm animal sanctuary in the U.S. At Best Friends, Russ set up the rescue operation compound for hurricane Katrina where 6,000 animals were rescued. His work has included rescues from animal hoarders, puppy mills and dog fighting cases, including the Michael Vick case.

Russ is married to Laura Allen, who is also an animal rights attorney and President of Animal Law Coalition. Together they have the Seattle based law firm of Allen & Mead. Russ and Laura balance this law practice with their animal rights and animal welfare work.

See Russ Mead’s paintings on russmead.com

This show will be hosted by Debbie Coffey, V.P. and Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

To contact us: ppj1@hush.com, or call 320-281-0585

TO LISTEN TO ALL ARCHIVED WILD HORSE & BURRO RADIO SHOWS, CLICK HERE. Continue reading