BLM holds on to every last cow while planning to sterilize mares, geld stallions and remove 1,251 wild horses from the Pershing Complex in Nevada

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Public comments due July 12, 2017 by 4:30 pm PT on the BLM’s Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA) plans for the East Pershing Complex in Nevada.
 
Urge ALTERNATIVE C, the NO ACTION ALTERNATIVE in this plan.
Once again, the BLM doesn’t want to discuss reducing any livestock, but intends to sterilize, geld and remove wild horses from their federally protected areas forever.
The East Pershing complex consists of 3 Herd Management Areas – North Stillwater HMA, Tobin HMA and Augusta Mountain HMA.  It consists of 4 Herd Areas – Augusta Mountain HA, Humboldt HA, East Range HA and Sonoma Range HA.  Of course, the BLM doesn’t have Herd Area Maps on it’s NEW (with much less information to the public) website.   This complex consists of 2,191,650 acres in Nevada.

BLM plans to reduce herd sizes from what they claim total 15,965 down to the low AMA of 345 horses, a removal of 1,251 wild horses.  Be sure to ask for all the raw data from any and all population inventory flights the last few years.  Since the BLM complains of too many FOIAs, let’s just ask them to provide the public with this documentation.

The BLM continues to experiment on wild horses.   About it’s horrible sterilization procedures, spaying is via ovariectomy surgery in temporary holding, or in the field or in BLM holding and the technique not specified.  This could include the inhumane colpotomies, so these inhumane experiments could be done in the field.  There was no mention of monitoring the mares after the procedures.
The BLM does say this:
“However, there is still uncertainty on whether the spayed mares would continue to remain with the stallion and band from which the mare was most recently attached. Overall the BLM anticipates that some spayed mares may continue to exhibit estrus behavior
which could foster band cohesion.  Nymphomaniac behavior in domestic mares was not always ‘cured’ following bilateral ovariectomy (Kobluk et al., 1995). It has been reported that 60 percent of ovariectomized domestic mares will cease estrous behavior following surgery (Loesch and Rodgerson, 2003).  Yet, the full repertoire of courtship and mating behavior has been displayed by ovariectomized mares and by anestrous mares during the nonbreeding season (Asa et al., 1980; Hooper et al., 1993).  Although the wild mare is expected to remain in a herd, additional consequential behavioral effects of spaying are unknown at this time.”
Let’s think about this… consequential behavioral effects of spaying are unknown at this time…hmmmm…sure sounds like the BLM is experimenting on our wild horses.
And lets remember that even though many mares have died from the colpotomy experiments, in this PEA, the BLM claims they don’t expect any problems.
The Alternatives presented are not NEPA-compliant because they are not genuine alternatives, they are basically Live/Die, not stating what the Action actually is.
And last but by no means least, on page 65 of this PEA, photos 10 & 11 show about a dozen horses drinking out of Logan Pond, then Logan Pond all dried up (like the horses drank every last drop of water).  This PEA doesn’t seem to address that a couple of geothermal power plants are near these HMAs, or mention the amount of water used by these geothermal plants.  We will be looking forward to more information about water use by ALL of the uses in this area, in the Environmental Assessment.

BLM’s Lust for Wild Horse & Burro Blood is Nothing New

“…Remember this?’ ~ R.T.

June 11, 2009

BLM’s Secret Planning Documents “Alternative Management Options”

Documents obtained by the Freedom of Information Act:

BLM Alternative Management Options Draft Plan + Markup

BLM Implementation Team minutes + markup

BLM Implementation Team minutes + markup

 

https://thecloudfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/alternativemanagement_optionsblm10_2008_markup.pdf

https://thecloudfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/blm_implementation_team_minutes_2008_markup.pdf

http://www.thecloudfoundation.org/news/press-releases/archived-press-releases/350-blm-s-secret-planning-documents-alternative-management-options

Documents Reveal BLM Secret Plan to Destroy Wild Horses

Former wild horses imprisoned by the BLM photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Documents obtained from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) via the Freedom of Information Act by a Phoenix-based non-profit, The Conquistador Program, reveal shocking and detailed plans to destroy healthy wild horses in government holding facilities as well as those still remaining in the wild on public lands.

BLM employees as well as a USDA veterinarian held weekly “Implementation Team” meetings beginning in July of 2008 in which they discussed and developed strategies aimed at ridding BLM of thousands of mustangs. In October they completed a 68 page document entitled “Alternative Management Options”. Tactics included in this document are reminiscent of those used to wipe out Native American tribes in the 1800s.

The BLM team created scenarios for killing mustangs using barbiturates, gun shots, or captive bolts. Bodies would be disposed of through rendering, burial or incineration. They discussed killing 1200-2000 wild horses per year. The document states that “the general public would be prohibited from viewing euthanasia.” Additionally, the Team felt that “increased support from public relations and management staff would also be needed to insulate those doing the actual work from the public, media and Congressional scrutiny/criticism.”

“Minutes from these meetings as well as the Draft Plan reveal what amounts to ‘the final solution’ for the American mustang,” states Ginger Kathrens, filmmaker and Volunteer Executive Director of The Cloud Foundation. “Despite a huge outcry from the American public last year regarding BLM plans to kill wild horses in holding, the agency is still pressing forward with a plan to destroy our American mustangs both on and off the range.”

Division Chief of the Wild Horse and Burro Program Don Glenn told The Cloud Foundation that “no decision has been made to move forward on a large scale with this plan, yet.”

BLM meeting minutes speak for themselves. “Security at facilities and at gathers would need to be increased to combat eco-terrorism. Having the people that are willing to put down healthy horses at gather sites could be a problem. Having vets putting down healthy horses at preparation facility[ies] could also be a problem.” Meeting minutes reveal the psychological toll that employees would pay-“have counseling for employees and contractors that have to euthanize the healthy horses because it is very stressful.”

The report created an option in which wild horses of all ages could be sold “without limitation”. In other words, horses could be sold directly to killer buyers in unchecked numbers. The Team admitted that “some wild horses will go to slaughter”.

Team Members formulated ways in which they could circumvent the National Environmental Policy Act, asking “How many (wild horses) could be euthanized during a gather (roundup) without having NEPA?” BLM discussed ways to circumvent the federal carcass disposal law (43 CFR 4730.2). Conversations included how many wild horses could be rendered at the Reno Rendering plant or “disposed of in pits”. The Team concluded that “there will not be large numbers of horses euthanized during gathers or in the field. This is due to state environmental laws.”

Recommendations include the creation of gelding herds, and sterilization of mares to create non-reproductive herds in the wild in place of natural herds. The team recommended changing the sex ratio from the normal 50% males and 50% females to 70% males and 30% females. Then the experimental two-year infertility drug, PZP-22, would be given to all mares that are returned to the wild. Plans call for rounding up the wild horses every two years to re-administer the drug.

“Mares on the drug will cycle monthly and, with the altered sex ratio, the social chaos will be dangerous and on-going,” Kathrens explains. “Any semblance of normal wild horse society will be completely destroyed.”

Kathrens has spent 15 years in the wild documenting mustang behavior for her PBS television documentaries which chronicle the life story of Cloud, the now famous pale palomino stallion she has filmed since birth. “Even Cloud and his little herd in Montana are in serious danger if BLM implements these options,” she continues. “The BLM plans a massive round up in Cloud’s herd beginning August 30, 2009.”

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/10/wild-horses-and-burros-need-your-voice-today/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/07/saturday-7817-wild-horse-burro-radio-with-ginger-kathrens-exec-dir-the-cloud-foundation-john-holland-pres-equine-welfare-alliance-kaitlin-kraska-lobbyist-aspca-cory-golden-ad/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/02/are-wild-horses-burros-being-categorized-for-slaughter/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/06/30/speak-up-for-wild-horses-before-its-too-late/

Wild Horses and Burros Need Your Voice TODAY!

Information supplied by Daniel Cordero Fernández

“We must relentlessly call Congress until they ask for mercy and remove the two offending sections legalizing wild horse killings and enabling horse slaughter in Appropriation Bills…”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Focus on all the member of the House and Senate appropriations committees but also contact your own Congressman and two Senators. This is because, in all likelihood, the two pro-slaughter sections (one removing the USDA slaughter inspections ban and other adding language to allow BLM to kill and sell for slaughter wild horses in holding) will be passed by the appropriations committees since western pro-slaughter folks have the majority and they have already discussed the matter and have allegedly agreed to pushing this to the full Congress to bring horse slaughter back. In my humble opinion, it is a done deal.

When contacting both your own legislators and the members of the committees, you must ask:

  1. a) Committee members:

– Ask them to vote no on any language allowing the killing of wild horses in holding and / or their sale without limitation, that is, for slaughter or “processing into commercial products” as they like to call it.

– Ask them to oppose any changes to refund horse slaughter inspections by USDA. Ask them to reintroduce the defunding language by means of a private amendment if necessary.

  1. b) Rest of congressmen:

– Ask them to oppose any language allowing the killing of wild horses in holding and/or their sale without limitation and, if necessary, to introduce or support an amendment striking down any language in the appropriations bill allowing the killing and sale without limitation.

– Ask them to support any amendment reintroducing the ban on the use of tax money to fund USDA horse slaughter inspections.

Contact information for all members of Congress, including the ones from a specific committee can be found together in this site:

https://www.contactingcongress .org/

Just select the committee you want contact info from the drop down menu and you are ready to go.

In the case of the agriculture appropriations one, whose text is already made but wasn’t formally introduced, they are aiming at removing Section 767 from the former appropriations bill, which contains the USDA defunding language that prevents horse slaughter plants to open up:

https://www.obpa.usda.gov/34gp exnotes2018.pdf

Go to Page 18 where it reads:

«Section 767: Prohibits inspection of horses for slaughter.

[Sec. 767. None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available in this Act may be used to pay the salaries or expenses of personnel—(1) to inspect horses under section 3 of the Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 603);

(2) to inspect horses under section 903 of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 1901 note; Public Law 104–127); or (3) to implement or enforce section 352.19 of title 9, Code of Federal Regulations (or a successor regulation).]

This change deletes the entire section 767. This change is requested in order to permit the Executive Branch to carry out programs in the most efficient manner. » >>> They are deleting the ban entirely.

In the case of the Interior Appropriations Bill there is still no bill text (looks like these welfare ranching cowboys have problems putting two words together) but we have Trump’s budget request where HE VERY CLEARLY REQUESTS WILD HORSES IN HOLDING TO BE KILLED AND TO ALLOW SALES OF WILD HORSES FOR “ALL PURPOSES”, THAT IS, FOR SLAUGHTER:

https://www.doi.gov/…/u…/fy201 8_blm_budget_justification.pdf

Go to page 24 of the .pdf where it reads:

«Wild Horse & Burro Management Shift Management Strategies (-$10,000,000 / -29 FTE)

The WH/B budget is principally consumed by the cost to care for excess animals in off range facilities, […]. Animals for which there is no adoption demand are to be humanely euthanized while others that meet certain criteria are to be sold without limitation. Enacted appropriations bills from 1988 to 2004 and from 2010 to present have prohibited destruction of healthy animals and unlimited sale. […] The BLM must be able to use all of the tools included in the Act to manage this program in a more cost-effective manner, including the ability o conduct sales without limitation. The budget proposes to eliminate appropriations language restricting the BLM from using all of the management options authorized in the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act. An estimated $4.0 million of the $10.0 reduction will be achieved through savings resulting from unrestricted sales. »

The markup session where both bills (agriculture and interior) text will be formally redacted and introduced is NEXT WEDNESDAY July 12th. Make sure you keep calling and writing until these two languages are killed for good. 

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/06/30/speak-up-for-wild-horses-before-its-too-late/

https://www.contactingcongress.org/

Wild Horses & Burros: Congressman Chris Stewart Violates U.S.C. Title 18 – Conspiracy to Defraud the United States

Press Release: Citizens Against Equine Slaughter

“Congressman Stewart Reports a 41% increase in WH&B population in less than 5 months – IMPOSSIBLE!”

Citizens Against Equine Slaughter has found evidence that the Department of the Interior (DOI), Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and at least one Congressman are guilty of violating 923. 18 U.S.C. § 371—Conspiracy to Defraud the United States:

“The general conspiracy statute, 18 U.S.C. § 371, creates an offense “[i]f two or more persons conspire either to commit any offense against the United States, or to defraud the United States, or any agency thereof in any manner or for any purpose. (emphasis added).”

Congressman Stewart Reports a 41% increase in WH&B population in less than 5 months – IMPOSSIBLE

We find that Chris Stewart did stand in front of a Congressional Appropriations Subcommittee for the Department of the Interior in 2016, addressing the BLM FY 2017 Budget. He did state that the wild horse population, in a majority, on the range were starving, or dying from dehydration. He also stated that there were, at that time, 67,000 wild horses on the range. These claims and population statements were those made by the BLM and the DOI in several media sources, as well as the Budget Justification letter submitted to Congress.

These 2 population statements would suggest that the wild horses went from approximately 47,000 in January 2016 to 67,000 by May of 2016 a 41% increase in less than 5 months? When BLM skews the ratio of stallions to mares on the range, 60 :40, this would mean that with 40 percent of the 47,000 wild horses in January, 18,800 would be mares, and all of them along with approximately 1,500 stallions had to have given birth in 5 months to achieve the 67,000 population boom stated in May of 2016.

1. We found that the August 2016 Environmental Assessment, Adobe Town Wild Horse Movements & Habitat Selection Research Gather, DOI-BLM-WY-D030-2016-0104-EA, page 35, Line 132 and 133, stated the wild horse population on the range was less than in holding (47,403 in holding), according to BLM officials in January of 2016.

https://eplanning.blm.gov/epl-front-office/projects/nepa/59671/97559/117715/Draft_Adobe_Town_Habitat_Movements_Research_EA_9-23-2016.pdf

2. Then in the Interior Appropriations subcommittee mark up, Representative Chris Stewart did state on 25, May 2016 that “There are more than 67,000 of them (horses) now, …” https://stewart.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/rep-chris-stewart-calls-for-bipartisan-solution-to-the-overpopulation-of

Was there even a census between these two numbers showing a 41% increase from Jan to May of the same year (2016)?

While we gathered photos of horses across the 10 states in various HMA’s to prove they were healthy, we found no wild horse advocate group with volunteers on the ground, no wild horse photographer, and even one ranch manager (Stacey Davies, from Roaring Springs Ranch in Oregon) who stated he knew of NO starving horses in Oregon, during a meeting of the Steens Advisory Council. So we asked, but never received any proof of this claim of “tens of thousands of horses that look like this”, made by Representative Stewart, as he held up an old photo of a mare and foal from one instance in 2015 in which human interference with wildlife created an issue where the horses did not act naturally, but instead became emaciated.

Along with these claims of health crisis and population booms, there is always the claim of rangeland destruction, but the question must be asked when photographic, or range-tour evidence is presented, was there ever livestock here? How long ago? And did the time after livestock were removed allow for rest and recovery. There is no wild horse habitat without livestock damage that proves the wild horses are destructive. Even studies such as the WY radio-collaring of wild horses in the Adobe Town Herd Management Area will be biased by the fact that plant life or consumption will be looked at based on the location given by the collars of the horses, however, no other species that eats these plants is simultaneously studied. Therefore, there is no valid way of scientifically determining what ate that plant. Making that aspect of the entire study invalid.

We assert that these statements and misrepresentations of truth are intentional

We assert that these statements and misrepresentations of truth are intentional, and done to convince the public as well as Congressional members to agree to an agenda to push these horses off the range or to genetic extinction. Many herds show signs of inbreeding when the genetic analysis reports are read. Augmenting genetics with the odd mare from an outside herd is not keeping the unique genetics found in different herds or areas viable or separate from the meta population, rather destroying any uniqueness. The augmentation method has also proved unsuccessful in the Kiger/Riddle HMA’s of Oregon. The Oregon genetic analysis reports have shown a steady decline in viability, even with outside mare or stallion introductions.

These intentional lies and mistruths must be exposed, and those perpetrating them must be charged with violation of U.S.C. Title 18, with intent to misinform the U. S. government to reach special interest agendas while misleading the people they are to serve.

Submitted to Congressman Raul Grijalva for the Congressional record, to be shared with the Natural Resources Committee of which he is the Ranking Member, on 7, July 2017.

Media Contact:

Val Cecama-Hogsett
541.315.6650

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OAMf1oifbF0fw14RNZ5G4e3YryEKdO6aZX9Fu9EFD4A/mobilebasic

Saturday (7/8/17) Wild Horse & Burro Radio with Ginger Kathrens (Exec. Dir., The Cloud Foundation), John Holland (Pres., Equine Welfare Alliance), Katlin Kraska (lobbyist, ASPCA), Cory Golden (Advocacy Coordinator, Return to Freedom) and R.T. Fitch (Pres., Wild Horse Freedom Federation) on saving wild horses & burros from slaughter

painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, This is a SPECIAL Saturday show on July 8, 2017

10:00. a.m. PST … 11:00 a.m. MST … Noon CST … 1:00 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 are:

Ginger Kathrens, Founder and Exec. Dir. of The Cloud Foundation, and member of the BLM’s National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board.  The Cloud Foundation is dedicated to preventing the extinction of Cloud’s herd through education, media events and public involvement and to protect other wild horse herds on public lands.

John Holland, Pres. of Equine Welfare Alliance.  Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) and its members are involved in a grass roots effort dedicated to ending the slaughter of American Horses and the preservation and protection of our Wild Horses & Burros on public lands.

Katlin Kraska, Equine Lobbyist for ASPCA.  The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA®) was the first humane society to be established in North America and is one of the largest in the world.

Cory Golden, Advocacy Coordinator for Return to FreedomReturn to Freedom is dedicated to preserving the freedom, diversity, and habitat of America’s wild horses and burros through sanctuary, education, advocacy and conservation

R.T. Fitch, Pres. of Wild Horse Freedom Federation. Wild Horse Freedom Federation is dedicated to putting people between wild equines and extinction.

Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and/or top Bureau of Land Management officials have ordered all wild horses & burros currently in short term holding facilities be categorized by weight and age in anticipation of the approval of the federal budget. The current recommendation for this budget would allow for “sale without limitation” many or most of the wild horses & burros currently in holding. This can lead to the barbaric slaughter of our iconic wild horses & burros.

Listen to find out more information on this issue and the actions you can take to help save the wild horses and burros from slaughter!

   

Left to right above, Ginger Kathrens (Exec Dir., The Could Foundation), John Holland (Pres., Equine Welfare Alliance), Katlin Kraska (Equine Lobbyist, ASPCA), Cory Golden (Advocacy Coordinator, Return to Freedom) and R.T. Fitch (Pres., Wild Horse Freedom Federation)
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

Hope Ryden, 87, Revealed the Lives of Wild Horses, Beaver, & Coyotes

Story by by as published on Animals 24-7

“There was quite a mixed gathering awaiting our good friend Hope Ryden when she approached and crossed the Rainbow Bridge the other day.  Animal and human alike were waiting to render a hand across to the afterlife to the woman who had touched and helped so many.  Animal advocacy is going to have turn up the volume in an effort to fill the void that now looms among us after the parting of Hope; may she rest in much earned peace.  God Bless.” ~ R.T.


”Eventually, I found that they would accept me if I first let them know I was there and then quieted down and stayed put. So I started singing to them from a long way off, as I approached the herd.”

Hope Ryden and Ginger Kathrens. Photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

HYANNIS,  Massachusetts––Hope Elaine Ryden,  87,  author and/or photographer for 26 books mostly on wildlife subjects,  and a frequent photo contributor to National Geographic,  died on June 18,  2017 in Hyannis,  Massachusetts from complications of hip surgery.

Born on August 1, 1929, in St. Paul, Minnesota, Hope Ryden was the third of three daughters and a son born to Ernest Edward Ryden and Agnes Ryden, who were respectively minister for the Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in St. Paul and the church organist/pianist.

As well as leading the relatively constrained life of a minister’s daughter, Hope Ryden grew up surrounded by music and journalism.

Sharing their interest in music,  the senior Rydens either wrote or translated from Swedish more than 40 hymns for publication in various Lutheran,  Methodist, Episcopalian and Presbyterian hymnals.  E.E. Ryden was also author of The Story of Our Hymns (1930) and The Story of Christian Hymnody (1959,  and from 1945 to 1958 was secretary of the Commission on a Common Hymnal,  which standardized the hymnal used by the Lutheran Church in America.

E.E. Ryden (1886-1981),  originally from Kansas City,  had been a police reporter for the Kansas City Star before earning his divinity degree from the Augustiana Theological Seminary in 1914.  He continued in journalism as editor of The Lutheran Companion for 27 years and of another periodical,  The Lutheran Outlook,  1938-1942.

Eventually,  in 1960,  E.E. Ryden was among the 34 members of the Committee on Lutheran Unity who brokered a merger of four previously separate Lutheran denominations to form the Lutheran Church of America…(CONTINUED)

Link to the Rest of the Story: http://www.animals24-7.org/2017/07/06/hope-ryden-87-revealed-the-lives-of-wild-horses-beaver-coyotes/#comment-10025

Politics Of Wildfire: A Burgeoning Government Business Enterprise?

an open letter from Capt. William E. Simpson II – USMM Ret.

“Everywhere in the world wherever a species of large herbivore has its population depleted or eliminated, vegetative (fuels for fires) materials (grasses & brush) become excessive resulting in a scenario where catastrophic wildfires take-over on an annual basis…”

Twin Peaks HMA Rush Fire on Rye Patch Road August 18, 2012 (Photo by BLM)

Somehow over the past century the notion of what it is to be a ‘civil servant’ and having the great privilege of serving ‘We the People’ has morphed into the current notion of being elected as a demigod, and being above the people. We see it all around us today in politics… so that statement is self-evident.

I think we’re getting snowed by many officials and politicians, and it’s to the point now where they don’t even seem to care if we even know or believe that. It’s really time for a change! And we can’t afford to sit on our hands and hope President Trump can do it all. Even if he’s inclined, he needs all Americans to start acting like we care for our beloved ‘America’ and all that it encompasses, as well as our own hard earned money, which pays for what has become the greatest ‘show’ on earth.

Few people are aware that the United State Forest Service (USFS) is now spending half (50%) of their total budget on fighting wildfires, and doing so when there is a readily available, simple cost effective (virtually free) method for abating the dry grasses and brush that fuel these explosively hot and disastrous wildfires.

As I write this, catastrophic wildfires are devastating many western states.

The dead and dying trees are no doubt fuel for wildfires in our forests. But as any Cub Scout can tell you, you can’t ignite a dry log with a match, dry hot summer weather or not; it takes a lot of kindling to accomplish that feat. So when we think of previous burns as well as dry forests, the fact that grasses and brush reappear annually and once dried by summer heat provide the ‘kindling’, abating grasses and brush is a key initiative to mitigating wildfire risk.

The math is very important because, even marginal mitigation of wildfires that cost many $-billions annually, would likely represent hundreds of $-millions in real savings for all American taxpayers.

Everywhere in the world wherever a species of large herbivore has its population depleted or eliminated, vegetative (fuels for fires) materials (grasses & brush) become excessive resulting in a scenario where catastrophic wildfires take-over on an annual basis. The science is crystal clear and incontrovertible on this point.

According to Science Magazine:

“By altering the quantity and distribution of fuel supplies, large herbivores can shape the frequency, intensity, and spatial distribution of fires across a landscape. There are even unique interactions among large herbivore populations that can influence fire regimes. For example, facilitative interactions between white rhinoceros and mesoherbivores result in reduced fuel loads and fuel continuity, and consequently fewer large, intense fires (71). Other factors can influence the frequency and intensity of fires, particularly in locations where the total area burned is strongly related to ungulate population size. For example, Serengeti wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus) populations irrupted after the rinderpest virus was eradicated in the 1960s, and the subsequent increase in grazing pressure led to a widespread reduction in the extent of fires and delayed recovery of tree populations (72). The removal of plant biomass by browsing also reduces fire fuel loads and decreases fire susceptibility. Thus, there is scant evidence of fire in much of Australia until the megafauna disappeared after humans arrived (5).”

And it’s no coincidence that here in the western United States where wildfires are turning forests into ash year after year, we have depleted herbivore populations. And in other locations, deer and elk are virtually non-existent.

As one of many examples I could easily make: In the state of California the deer population has plummeted from about 2-million animals to under 400,000 deer in the entire State. And this too is the ultimate result of defective management of large predators by California Department of Fish & Wildlife.

You would think people who call themselves ‘managers’ would know-about and understand the foregoing science and the reports given the large amount of peer-reviewed studies that have been published. Sorry, that’s not the case; the forest and wildlife managers, including many people at the BLM are instead focused on two things in this order; ‘money’ & ‘power’, both of which are extracted from the people of America.

But as most people know, these managers answer to their masters, the politicians and bureaucrats, who bear most of the blame for these wildfires.

‘Money’ as in enriching their budgets and protecting their new wildfire enterprise that creates more state and federal jobs at taxpayer’s expense of both cash and forest resources, and diminishment of critical watersheds.

Is it dishonest and immoral to adopt a forest management plan, which concurrently rejects sound wildfire abatement concepts (such as ground fuel reduction via herbivore reintroduction), while currently allowing forests and property to be devastated annually simply to create more government-based jobs that are to be paid-for by already overburdened taxpayers?

Managing an annual disaster with a focus as a revenue model is what I would call malfeasance. And given the obvious neglect of prioritizing a preemptive solution-based focus, as opposed to a reactionary response model, the use of the term malfeasance may not be unfair. And it certainly might be called incompetence.

And ‘power’ is the ability to rule citizens using political deceptions, lies and methods of deflecting blame and discarding citizen input out-of-hand regarding any solutions forward by people outside the political and bureaucratic circles; they want to retain all power within their circles of influence.

This is not how our founding fathers intended for our Constitutional Republic system of government to function; it’s currently a sham!

Having spent many decades in and around the mountains of northern California and southern Oregon growing-up on the family’s working ranch, I have had a great opportunity to study first-hand the recurring wildfires and the socio-economic and environmental impact of catastrophic wildfires, along with the devastating effects of the closure of the logging industry.

Recently I drafted an article, which posited a wildfire fuel abatement methodology using large herbivores, which unlike any other options, offers tremendous economic and environmental advantages, as further outlined herein.

Many of America’s remote forested areas are not suitable for livestock grazing, even though there is an abundance of grasses and brush; the terrain is far too difficult for livestock management, which also makes fighting wildfires in these areas far more difficult and costly to fight, and firefighters die, while many others are injured.

The article titled ‘Fire Brigade – The Value Proposition of Wild Horses’ was sent to my local County Supervisors as well as to the representative of my Congressman, Mr. Doug LaMalfa – (CA Dist. 01).

Sadly and frustratingly I had the first-hand experience of being ‘brushed-off’ by a representative of my own Congressman, Doug LaMalfa (I wonder if he knows how his constituents are treated?).

It’s funny how they only want to hear from citizens when they want even more of our money, or need to get reelected. Of course I think those days are coming to a quick end.

In an email (herein below) from Erin Ryan, the representative of my Congressman (Doug LaMalfa) regarding my Fire Brigade proposal, I was told in no uncertain terms that “none of this is news” in regard to my novel idea for abating wildfire fuels using large herbivores “.  Her observation was manifestly incorrect.

I had sent my articleFire Brigade’ in its entirety to Ms. Ryan, along with an introduction, some wildfire cost metrics and photos of examples of trees that had obviously benefited from the effect of symbiotic mutualism with large herbivores (in this case, wild horses).

So when I received the response (below) from Ms. Ryan, I was of course astounded that it seemed clearly designed to discourage and defer my initiative by incorrectly alleging what I had proposed was nothing new, and incorrectly inferring that it somehow involved ‘tree cutting’, which would attract litigation, also incorrect since there is no “tree cutting” involved.

The trend in the government methodology of ‘sidelining‘ citizens has been in widespread use by bureaucrats and politicians far too long, and it has inflamed citizens to elect Donald J. Trump as our President. Another tactic is making themselves completely unreachable except through so-called ‘gatekeepers’ who seem to meter access according to the size of your wallet.

And now as we see, career politicians and bureaucrats seem to be revolting against our elected President, as they fear the voice of the people may be carried-out to some extent or another by President Trump. Time will tell, but this paradigm of government for and by the government must be brought under control.

It seems like smart politicians would want to listen to citizens who pay the bills and who might have something valuable to contribute to a very serious subject that costs taxpayers $-billions of dollars annually. But alas, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Here is that incredibly disappointing reply:

—–Original Message—–
From: Ryan, Erin Marie <ErinMarie.Ryan@mail.house.gov>
To: Capt. William E. Simpson – USMM <gemmaster7@aol.com>
Sent: Tue, Jun 27, 2017 3:24 pm
Subject: RE: Removing Fuel Load Reduces Wildfire Risk & Intensity = Saved Money

Environmental lawsuits using the Equal Access to Justice Act are largely to blame.  They sue every single management plan that involves tree cutting – even in the burned areas.  None of this is news and it is not within the control of the board of supervisors as I’m sure you are aware.  I could go on and on and on but have a meeting.  You get my drift.

Erin Ryan  |  Congressman Doug LaMalfa CA-01
530.515.7135 cell   Facebook | Twitter | Website | eNewsletter
IN GOD WE TRUST … ALL OTHERS WE QUESTION

As to her cute little byline I say: ‘In God We Trust, Politicians Must Take Polygraph’

Again, to be crystal clear, Ms. Ryan was provided the entire article and an informational intro, none of which mentioned “tree cutting”.

Fires are devouring our forests, destroying habitats, killing thousands of animals and obliterating watersheds nationally as I write this.  It’s in the national news as I write this!

Watching all the wildfires around the U.S. burning forests and homes this early in the season, suggests that the losses may be monumental this year ($20-50 Billion?) in a now recurring annual nightmare!

Just in and around our own County (Siskiyou) here in CA costs and losses have been in the billions of dollars!

http://ijpr.org/post/wildfire-conundrum-0

http://www.sacbee.com/news/state/california/fires/article39167664.html

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/01/25/ap-newsbreak-1-billion-insured-losses-in-california-fires.html

So as we learn from the response by the Congressman’s (LaMalfa) aid, ideas are quickly shot-down without even bothering to actually read them, and this further exemplifies the myopic and defective reasoning (stuck thinking in a small box) where they have clearly and undeniably missed connecting the idea of returning a native species back into their habitats to clean-up the fuel grasses and brush off the forest floors.

In the case of Siskiyou County, CA (5th largest county in CA): By relocating the horses from the local BLM corrals over in Modoc Co into the more remote county, state and federal forested areas where there are no commercial grazing herds creating a competitive issue, the horses would naturally abate the excessive ground fuel loading at the rate of 30-pounds of dry grass and brush per horse, per day. . And it seems reasonable that the BLM would give other Gov. Orgs. a sweetheart deal on horses to save their storage costs for horses.

Just 10,000 horses can abate 300,000 pounds of dry grass and brush in a day. In just one-month that’s 4,500 tons of grass and brush abated!  This amount of abatement is very significant! 40,000 horses can abate 1.2-million pounds of dry grasses and brush daily.

Here’s a guide that helps with a general understanding of the weight of dry fuel on the ground and fire burn-rates, etc.: https://gacc.nifc.gov/rmcc/predictive/Fire%20Behavior%20Fuel%20Model%20Descriptions.pdf

DOI Secretary Ryan Zinke has discussed the slaughter of ~40,000 wild horses currently being held in multiple west coast BLM corrals, which according to one Associated Press story alleges will save the BLM $10-million.
However, these same horses could be parceled-out into the various remote western state wilderness forest areas where there are no cattle competing for grazing, in remote difficult-terrain areas that are at high wildfire risk from excess ground fuel (dry grasses and brush) due to an acute lack of large herbivores.

And those same 40k wild horses would abate 18,000 tons of dry grass and brush monthly. It would cost taxpayers many tens of $-millions of dollars annually to have men do this tough and dangerous job in rugged terrain. And many of these areas would not suffer any mechanized efforts very well.

Respectfully, I call upon a U.S. Navy Seal and our now Secretary of the Department of the Interior Mr. Ryan Zinke to honor his oath, and put the American people and their hard-earned dollars first, by carefully considering the concept of the wild horse fire brigade.

Instead of destroying a living American legacy that is innate to the spirit of the 40,000 wild horses in BLM holding pens, let these horses do their part for America and give them the job of abating the ground fuel to mitigate these catastrophic wildfires in select areas.

Horses have served mankind with honor and loyalty for centuries, let’s give them back a little of what they have given mankind for so long.

Wild horses are a native species according one of the world’s most respected and authoritative experts, Dr. Ross MacPhee – Curator of Vertebrates at the American Museum of Natural History. So only the uneducated would debate otherwise.

Let’s Do The Math:

So with even minimal abatement of dry fuel grasses and brush that fuel wildfires representing an annual $20-50 Billion wildfire problem, it’s easy to realistically project saving to taxpayers in the many tens of $-millions of dollars annually.

So does it make any sense whatsoever to kill the wild horses that are the solution for a measly $10-M in relative savings to the BLM budget? Let’s not overlook that the wild horse solution would work year-round every year. And furthermore, that these horses could be located where they would not present competition to cattle for grazing and that all of the stallions among the 40,000 wild horses have been gelded, so they will not present a breeding problem.

Time is of the essence in potentially implementing the wild horse Fire Brigade solution in that, these horses all may be killed sometime before year-end and currently sit in corrals instead of converting wildfire fuel into humus via their manure, which helps soils and forests.

Citizens/Taxpayers:  Please share this article with your groups, email lists and via Social Media.

“When the people fail to run their government, it will run them.” — Capt. William E. Simpson

4th of July: A Time to Look Inward

OpEd by R.T. Fitch ~ President/Co-Founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Patriotic Ginerous Legacy (Harley) rescued from slaughter by Terry and R.T. Fitch, may he now rest in peace.

It’s a dangerous time for not only our wild horses and burros but also for our country in general.  Although there is renewed hope that we will no longer “lead from behind” in a world that is full of terrorists and rouge nations there is also a deep feeling of uncertainty as our new leadership attempts to be allowed to get it’s footing and move forward with an agenda that the American public hopes will improve the lives of families and friends.  And here at SFTHH and WHFF we consider our native wild horses and burros to be that family and to be those friends.

We, as an advocacy, are going to be calling upon each and everyone of you to become yet even more involved over the next several days.  We currently are asking you to pick up the phone, to make the calls and to write the emails and within the next few days we will be giving you some additional information and ammunition that will further empower and embolden you to help save our wild equines from slaughter and total ruination.

But on this day we need to recharge our souls and look deep within ourselves to reassess just WHY we do what we do and what makes it important to keep the movement rolling forward with gusto and dedication.  It’s a pretty easy glance; we quickly look beyond the common sense and moral compass that tells us it’s the right thing to do, that is a no-brainer.  But like the wild horses and burros who are all about family and freedom we do it for the exact same reasons; the future of our children and the freedom that they should experiance, to be able to live the lives they deserve to live and to relish in the natural world that so many have forgotten.

Old time Rocker, Neil Young recently made a  Facebook post that caught our eye.

“We made a record we wanted to share with you,” Canadian rocker Neil Young said. “We played with a bunch of people … total strangers in the same room on a full moon, 65 of us. It was very great. We had a great time. Enjoy.”

Neil was referring to a new song that has been titled “The Children of Destiny” and although I usually concentrate more on the musical content versus the lyrics the words of this song, coupled with the images, sincerely resonate within my soul upon this day:

Stand up for what you believe,

resist the powers that be

Preserve the land and save the seas for the children of destiny

The children of you and me.

Isn’t that exactly why we are doing what we are doing, preserving the future of our wildlife for the enjoyment of future generations?  Does that not fully shine the light on our motives and direction?

The song goes further to say:

Should goodness ever lose

And evil steal the day

Should happy sing the blues

And peaceful fade away

What would you do?

What would you say?

How would you act on that new day?

My answer is to ensure that such a day never comes to fruition, that it never happens, that such sadness does not occur and that is why we fight and that is the reason we will be calling upon you to help make a difference in what can and will be enjoyed for generations to come, together we can make this happen and on this day we all to need to look inward for the strength, purpose and guidance to move forward with what is right, just and pure red, white and blue American.

Today we gather our forces, tomorrow we fight on with renewed strength.

Together we can make this happen.

Former SFTHH posts that you might find of interest: https://rtfitchauthor.com/?s=4th+of+july&submit=Search

Are wild horses & burros being categorized for slaughter?

Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation at Palomino Valley

SOURCE:  The Cloud Foundation

Press Release:  For immediate release

Are Wild Horses being Categorized for Slaughter?

Colorado Springs, CO 07-01-2017 – The Cloud Foundation received an anonymous tip that Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and/or top Bureau of Land Management officials have ordered all wild horses currently in short term holding facilities be categorized by weight and age in anticipation of the approval of the federal budget.  The current recommendation for this budget would allow for “sale without limitation” many or most of the wild horses currently in holding.  This, of course, can eventually lead to the barbaric slaughter of our iconic wild horses.  The tipster stated that this categorization was to ensure the BLM was ready to ”ship out” horses older than five years of age.  The only place to “ship out” these horses would be to slaughter.  The caller stated that the shipping would start with the smaller facilities so that wild horse advocates wouldn’t be able to impose an injunction before the plan was already started.  Although anonymous, the caller also told The Cloud Foundation that direction has been given to the one of the government’s top transportation official to prepare for this shipping.

Ginger Kathrens, Volunteer Executive Director of The Cloud Foundation said, “Surely Secretary Zinke would not allow for this devious, clandestine and under the radar ploy to destroy wild horses when 80% of Americans are against slaughter.  If only Secretary Zinke and other DOI and BLM officials would have implemented tried and proven on-the-range-management ideas as we have asked for over a decade, we would not be where we are today.”

“There are currently in excess of 50,000 wild horses that have been rounded up, torn apart from their families, and corralled at the taxpayer expense because on-the-range-management has not been implemented as hundreds of thousands of cattle and sheep graze at little or no cost,” says Lisa Friday, volunteer Vice President of The Cloud Foundation.  “Our indigenous American icons deserve better.”

###

Media Contacts:

Lisa Anne Friday

The Cloud Foundation

1(804)389-8218

info@thecloudfoundation.orgLisa_Friday@chs.net

The Cloud Foundation (TCF) is a Colorado based 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of wild horses and burros on our western public lands.

 

Speak Up for Wild Horses — Before It’s Too Late!

Source: Return to Freedom and endorsed by Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“At Wild Horse Freedom Federation we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Return to Freedom and their call for immediate action to save our dwindling wild horse and burro herds.  You can make a difference and the time to make that difference is “right now’.

Please take the actions, listed below, and be a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.” ~ R.T. Fitch, co-founder/president of Wild Horse Freedom Federation


Word from Washington, D.C., is that it has been too quiet from wild horse & burro supporters. We must turn that around – *NOW* — before thousands of wild horses and burros are lost to foreign slaughterhouses or felled by bullets paid for by our own tax dollars.

Here’s how you can help America’s wild horses & burros:

1) Call your representative and senators (you can find their phone numbers here: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/ and here: https://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/ ).

2) Politely identify yourself and your city.

3) Tell staff you are calling to urge your representative or senator to:

* oppose 2018 budget provisions that would allow BLM to euthanize (shoot) healthy horses and that would remove sale restrictions on captive wild horses and burros;

* support the Roybal-Allard/Dent Amendment in the 2018 Agriculture Appropriations bill to continue the ban on horse slaughter;

* and support the bipartisan SAFE Act (HR 113), which would permanently ban horse slaughter in the United States and the transport of horses to slaughter.

4) Tell the staff member why these issues are important to you. For example, “I’m calling because I do not want my tax dollars used to kill wild horses or allow the return of slaughter to the United States.”

5) If you are unable to get through to your representatives’ D.C. number, call a district office. Phone numbers can be found on your representatives’ websites.

Other things you can do to help

  • Send a letter to your representatives through our website: https://returntofreedom.salsalabs.org/opposebudg…/index.html Please be sure to personalize the letter to increase the odds that it will be read.
  • Send a personal letter. Addresses can be found on your representatives’ websites.
  • Check your representatives’ website for upcoming town hall meetings or schedule a meeting with district staff to share your concerns.
  • Sign RTF’s anti-slaughter petition: https://returntofreedom.salsalabs.org/safeactpet…/index.html
  • Spread the word! Share this post and encourage your friends and family members to pick up the phone and play a part in protecting America’s wild horses and burros (Hit the SHARE Buttons Below)