Please Comment on BLM’s Plans to Destroy and Slaughter Three Herds of Wild Horses in the Wyoming Checkerboard

Source:  wildhoofbeats.com

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

It is a very familiar and unwelcome feeling that I have, writing about the BLM’s plans to roundup and remove over 55% of the wild horses in the Wyoming Checkerboard. It seems like just yesterday I was writing about this plan that affects wild horses on 2.4 million acres in Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek and Great Divide Basin. The last roundup was in 2014 when 1263 wild horses were removed from their homes and lands. 14 died during the roundup and over 100 died in short term holding facilities in the four months following the roundup.

This time, however, the situation facing the wild horses in Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek and Greek Divide Basin is much more dire. The consequences of being rounded up and removed from public lands could not be more serious because right now the BLM is asking Congress to lift the restrictions on killing and slaughtering wild horses, and every one of the 1560 wild horses that the BLM is planning to remove is facing imminent death. The BLM does not consider in its Environmental Assessments what will happen to the wild horses that are removed according to their Proposed Actions. They do not care about the suffering, illnesses and deaths of the horses and they do not care about you and I, the taxpayers, funding a lifetime of each horse being kept in pens, in captivity. It is a wasteful, cruel and insane policy that favors overwhelmingly corrupt livestock interests who get to graze and overgraze their private livestock on our lands, losing millions of dollars on this program each year.

In this Proposed Action, the BLM is pandering to the Rock Springs Grazing Association, which only has 24 members, and whose grazing rights on public land are a privilege, not a right – but they don’t see it that way. Land swaps could have easily solved the problem of the checkerboard of public and private lands, but it is not in their interests to cooperate. They want to control all the land. And they want the horses gone at any cost. But 70% of the land, of the 2.4 million acres in Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek and Great Divide Basin is public land. It should not be managed as if it were all private land, but it is. We stopped the 2016 Checkerboard Roundup because we won an appeal which said that the BLM cannot manage all these lands as if they were private.

This time, we need your help to speak up, write the BLM and demand that they select Alternative C – no roundup or removal.

The BLM should not be allowed to move forward with this roundup only on the basis of an Environmental Assessment.

Read the rest of this article HERE.

http://www.wildhoofbeats.com/blog/please-comment-on-blms-plans-to-destroy-and-slaughter-three-herds-of-wild-horses-in-the-wyoming-checkerboard

Carol Walker, Plaintiff in Lawsuit to Stop Wyoming Roundups, on why this fight is personal

Wild Horses: Fighting to Save Wyoming’s Wild Horses is Personal

By Carol Walker, Director of Field Documentation, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

An Adobe Town Band Stallion Leads the Way

An Adobe Town Band Stallion Leads His Family

The fight to stop the BLM from its plan to eradicate wild horses from private and public land in three herds in the Red Desert of Wyoming is personal for me. On my first trip to Adobe Town in 2004, I fell in love with a gentle, battle-scarred grey stallion and his small, beautiful family. He ran right up to me and I waited, not knowing that this encounter would change my life forever. His filly came up next to her father and it looked as though she grinned at me. I had to keep coming back to see them, learn more about their lives, and photograph them as they as they are best portrayed, wild and free, at home in the dry, dramatic and isolated landscape of the Red Desert. I wrote my first book, Wild Hoofbeats: America’s Vanishing Wild Horses to let people know how magnificent these horses are, and that they deserve to live free.

The Grey Stallion and His Filly

The Grey Stallion and His Filly

Over the past 10 years I have traveled to Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek, and Great Divide Basin in all seasons of the year, even the depths of winter. One overwhelming thing stands out for me, after having driven thousands of miles on unmarked dirt roads in these Herd Management Areas – these horses are uniquely suited to this harsh and forbidding landscape and they belong there. They belong there more than the invasive and destructive cattle and sheep, and more than the land wrecking oil and gas drilling.

Four Grey Mares Run from the Helicopter in Adobe Town in 2010

Four Grey Mares Run from the Helicopter in Adobe Town in 2010

I am a plaintiff on a lawsuit to stop the BLM from removing over 800 wild horses from Adobe Town, Salt Wells Creek, and Great Divide Basin. The roundups are scheduled to start in two weeks. http://www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/info/news_room/2014/july/18rsfo-removal.html

Without any care for Environmental Analysis, land use planning, or NEPA, the BLM announced its plans to proceed with these roundups and gave the public no opportunity to comment on their plans. Of course, the BLM ignores public comments anyway, but we were not even allowed to make our voices heard. The roundup was announced only 1 month before the start date, barely time to get a lawsuit in place, but we did, and the violations of the law and procedure are so glaring that I believe we have a very good chance of winning and stopping the BLM in its tracks.

READ THE REST OF THIS STORY AND FIND OUT WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP HERE.

Carol Walker’s blog is wildhoofbeats.com

Carol’s website is www.livingimagescjw.com