BLM to Trap Burros from Spring Mountain Ranch State Park

PM Burros Wild © Carl Mrozek

From a BLM press release:

Las Vegas – The Bureau of Land Management will begin trapping burros today in Spring Mountain Ranch State Park utilizing a bait and water trap method.  The baited temporary corrals will be in place for at least several days to up to a month, depending on the burros’ movements through the area.

The burros are being gathered because they pose safety hazards on the park’s roadways and are damaging the park’s restoration efforts.  Spring Mountain Ranch State Park has contacted the BLM on several occasions, regarding the wild burro issues, since December 2014.  Over the last several years, several burro vs vehicle collisions have resulted in severe property damage.

The BLM is planning to remove approximately 40 burros, utilizing the temporary bait traps consisting of a series of corral panels stocked with hay and water; no helicopters will be used.  The timing of this gather operation is important, as burro-vehicle accidents increase during the Super Summer Theatre events that are held at Spring Mountain Ranch State Park during summer evenings.

The public is reminded that feeding wild horses and burros is dangerous as wild animals can be unpredictable.  Feeding also affects the animals’ behavior and can be hazardous to their overall health and safety as well as increased public safety concerns.

Once the trap operations have concluded, burros will be transported to Ridgecrest, California and will be available for adoption.  Individuals interested in adopting these burros must complete an adoption application and meet the BLM requirements to adopt.

For updates on the burro gather, please visit http://on.doi.gov/2aUTacx or call 702-515-5095.

Protect Mustangs is a nonprofit organization who protects and preserves native and wild horses.




Lies, subterfuge and PZP

PM PZP Dr liu

Forcibly drugging wild mares with PZP at the Carson Prison

By,

Carl Mrozek

Unfortunately, the secret mandate to turn our public lands into vast oil, gas and coal fields–interspersed with millions of cattle under Bush–Cheney has continued unabated under Obama with geothermal fields, plus solar and wind farms being added to the mix of revenue generating initiatives, many on lands reserved by law for primary use by wild horses and burros.

Even as their herds diminish under constant assault by all of these special interests on public lands, wild horses continue to be scapegoats for degradation of public lands due to overpopulation, by the BLM which over-counts then by at least 200% while greatly exaggerating their rate of population  increase–based on optimal conditions and zero mortality.

BLM’s solution to this fabricated overpopulation explosion of wild horses and burros has been massive roundups which are now being replaced by large-scale birth control with PZP (porcine zone pellucida) which results in sterilization after multiple applications. While their tactics have grown more sophisticated, BLM’s overall management program is much the same: Management for Extinction–only slower and less visible than before. Many herds have achieved balanced population levels with little or no management but today all the $$ is on fertility control, short-term and sterilization, long-term–not on natural population control, because this won’t eradicate the herds as ordained by the power brokers in DV. Alas if we don’t wake up, expose and oppose the lies and subterfuge re: the widespread use of PZP soon, our iconic native wild horses may join blue and bowhead whales in the waiting line for extinction–sooner than later.

PM-Carl-Mrozek-NV-Mustang-marked

PM Burros Wild © Carl Mrozek

Carl Mrozek

Carl Mrozek’s nature clips are seen often on CBS Sunday Morning News. He is currently making a documentary on Wild Burros.

Palomino Mustangs on CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/nature-wild-palomino-horses/

Pine Nut Wild Horses on CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/nature-wild-horses/ (BLM tried to roundup and decimate this herd but Protect Mustangs stopped the roundup in court)

Red Rock Wild Horses on CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/wild-horses-of-nevada-50087668/ (BLM removed them)

Cold Creek Wild Horses on CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/wild-horses-of-nevada/ (BLM rounded them up and took them away)

 





Press Release: Calling for a moratorium on roundups and Flag Day protests announced

© ProtectMustangs.org may be shared

For immediate release:

Protect Mustangs calls for a moratorium on roundups 

Protests planned nationwide on Flag Day including outside Feinstein’s San Francisco office June 14th

SAN FRANCISCO (June 8, 2013)–Protect Mustangs calls for a moratorium on wild horse and burro roundups as well as nationwide protests on Flag Day June 14th. The California-based native wild horse conservation group says there are no “excess” wild horses or burros and want all the native wild horses and historic burros to be returned to the wild. They just announced the Flag Day rally outside Senator Feinstein’s office building at One Post Street, San Francisco from 11:00 – 12:00. Feinstein is on the Appropriations Committee who doles out millions of dollars to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for cruel roundups and removals.

“Stopping the roundups is one thing all the advocates can agree on,” says Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs. “During a moratorium, scientists can undertake accurate independent population studies to learn how many are left on each area of the range. We need to revamp outdated appropriate management levels to give native wild horses and historic burros the correct share of the rangeland designated for therm by the law. Livestock could go elsewhere but stockpiling more than 50,000 wild horses and burros is nuts.”

In light of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report on wild horses and burros lacking data for an overpopulation claim, Protect Mustangs calls upon Congress, President Obama, Secretary Jewell, The Appropriations Committee and especially Senator Feinstein for an immediate halt to roundups and to return the 50,000 wild horses in government holding to the more than 30 million acres of herd management areas in the West with a hold on fertility control. The native wild horse conservation group calls on the Department of Interior, Congress and President Obama to acknowledge wild horses are native, implement holistic land management and reserve design thus creating a win-win for wild horses to help the ecosystem and reverse desertification.

“With the gluttony of roundups and removals, wild horses reproduce at a higher rate than normal–to prevent extinction,” explains Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs. “We need more studies to establish what the normal reproduction rate is and discover truths under the BLM’s alleged overpopulation claim on the more than 30 million acres of public wildlands designated for their use. Today there is no scientific proof of overpopulation to merit fertility control or roundups.”

“They have no data-driven basis for gauging how many horses or burros a particular HMA can support, states Carl Mrozek, filmmaker of Saving Ass in America. “In practice BLM treats all habitats as being pretty much the same, and as resource poor, by requiring 1000+ acres/ horse or burro. This is a joke.”

In 1900 there were 2 million wild horses roaming in freedom in America. Today native wild horses are underpopulated on the range. Advocates estimate there are less than 18,000 left in the ten western states combined.

Protect Mustangs is a California based conservation group devoted to protecting native wild horses. Their mission is to educate the public about the indigenous wild horse, protect and research American wild horses on the range and help those who have lost their freedom.

“The roundups must stop now and the BLM’s fiscal irresponsibility must stop as well,” states Novak. “The public is outraged. We want native wild horses and historic burros to live in the wild–unharassed by the agency charged with their care.”

# # #

Media Contacts:

Anne Novak 415.531.8454 Anne@ProtectMustangs.org

Kerry Becklund, 510-502-1913  Kerry@ProtectMustangs.org

Links of interest: 

Washington Post: Independent panel: Wild horse roundups don’t work; use fertility drugs, let nature cull herdshttp://www.washingtonpost.com/national/energy-environment/independent-panel-to-recommend-changes-in-blm-wild-horse-program/2013/06/05/b65ba772-cdb3-11e2-8573-3baeea6a2647_story.html

Information on native wild horses: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=562

NAS Press release June 5, 2013: http://www8.nationalacademies.org/onpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=13511

NAS Report: Using Science to Improve the BLM Wild Horse & Burro Program: A Way Forward http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13511

No proof of overpopulation, no need for fertility control http://protectmustangs.org/

Appropriations Committee members: http://www.appropriations.senate.gov/about-members.cfm

Wild burros of Airizona Black Mountains on CBS: http://tuesdayshorse.wordpress.com/tag/carl-mrozek/

Princeton University: Wildlife and cows can be partners, not enemies, in the search for foodhttp://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S32/93/41K10/index.xml?section=featured

Gone viral~ The Associated Press, March 24, 2013: Budget axe nicks BLM wild-horse adoption center http://www.denverpost.com/colorado/ci_22862206

US property exposed to wildfire valued at $136 billion says report: http://www.artemis.bm/blog/2012/09/17/u-s-property-exposed-to-wildfire-valued-at-136-billion-says-report/

Horseback Magazine: Group takes umbridge at use of the word “feral” http://horsebackmagazine.com/hb/archives/19392

Protect Mustangs in the news: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=218

Protect Mustangs’ press releases: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=125

Press Release: No proof of overpopulation, no need for native wild horse fertility control

 

Sally Jewell, Fortune Live Media / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

Sally Jewell, Fortune Live Media / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

For immediate release:

Is it safe to use pesticides on an indigenous species? 

WASHINGTON (June 7, 2013)–In light of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report on wild horses and burros lacking data for an overpopulation claim, Protect Mustangs calls upon Secretary Jewell for an immediate halt to roundups and to return the 50,000 wild horses in government holding to the more than 30 million acres of herd management areas in the West to reduce costs quickly. The native wild horse conservation group calls on the Department of Interior to acknowledge wild horses are native, implement holistic land management and reserve design thus creating a win-win for wild horses to help the ecosystem and reverse desertification. Protect Mustangs requests that ‘survival of the fittest’ should be the only form of fertility control considered because indigenous wild horses must not become domesticated on the range. Artificial management such as pesticides and sterilizations should never be used on a native species such as Equus caballus.

“With the gluttony of roundups and removals, wild horses reproduce at a higher rate to prevent extinction,” explains Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs. “We need more studies to establish what the normal reproduction rate is and discover truths about alleged overpopulation on the more than 30 million acres of public wildlands designated for their use. Today there is no scientific proof of overpopulation to merit fertility control.”

In July 2010, Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) spearheaded a letter signed by members of Congress, requesting an investigation of the Wild Horse and Burro Program by the National Academy of Sciences. This was a direct result of public outcry and media exposure of roundup carnage. Three years later, the NAS report was released last Wednesday.

According to a press release from NAS released Wednesday, “The U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) current practice of removing free-ranging horses from public lands promotes a high population growth rate, and maintaining them in long-term holding facilities is both economically unsustainable and incongruent with public expectations, says a new report by the National Research Council.”

“Making decisions to apply a fertility drug to wild horse herd mares would put wild horse herds in danger of a die-off if any natural or manmade disaster struck the herd management area–be it wildfire, an extreme winter, mass predation or something else,” explains Kathleen Gregg, environmental researcher. “If a majority of the mares are non-reproducing and thus zero or even just a few births, then it is easy to see that the entire herd would be in jeopardy, both genetically and physically, and would diminish their ability to survive into the future. Then we have a herd that is not safe on its own range. Wild horses must to be protected as the law states they shall be.”

“Unfortunately, the Academy quickly recommends fertility control as a better solution without considering the ‘do nothing’ or ‘placebo’ option which is an integral component of every credible field trial for pharmaceutical and other ‘treatment’ plans,” states Carl Mrozek, filmmaker of Saving Ass in America. “Had they searched for examples of herds with minimal or no culling in the past decade or so, they would have found multiple examples of herds which appear to have achieved homeostasis (equilibrium) or something approaching it, naturally, without BLM roundups or fertility treatments.”

“The NAS findings clearly state that the BLM has failed to provide accurate estimates of the nation’s population of wild horses and burros,” states Jesica Johnston, environmental scientist and biologist. “Therefore, the NAS cannot conclude that a state of over-population exists and or provide a recommendation for artificial management considerations such as ‘rigorous fertility controls’ to control populations for which the complex population dynamics are currently unknown.”

Recently fertility control, in the form of immunocontraceptives for wild horses, was erroneously passed by the EPA as “restricted use pesticides”. The EPA inaccurately named indigenous wild horses “pests” in order to pass the drug. Pesticides (PZP, GonaCon®, etc.) should never be used on native species such as E. caballus.

“PZP and other fertility control should not be used on non-viable herds either,” states Debbie Coffey, director of wild horse affairs at Wild Horse Freedom Federation.  “Most of the remaining herds of wild horses are non-viable. The NAS and any advocacy groups that are pushing PZP and other fertility control have not carefully studied all of the caveats in Dr. Gus Cothran’s genetic analysis reports along with the remaining population of each herd of wild horses.”

Equus caballus originated in North America more than 2 million years ago. Equus survived extinction through migration and E.caballus could have returned to America with the Spanish unless some had remained on the continent the entire time. Today researchers question historical records–written with Inquisition censorship–that claim the Spanish brought the first horses to America. Even so, if no horses remained when the Conquistadors arrived they would not be introducing the species but “returning” E.caballus to its native land.

“It’s time for land managers to come out of the dark ages–use native wild horses to heal the land and reverse desertification,” states Novak. “We’d like to see the BLM manage the land using wild horses as a resource in partnership with the New Energy Frontier–at virtually no cost to the taxpayer.”

In 1900 there were 2 million wild horses roaming in freedom in America. Today native wild horses are underpopulated on the range. Advocates estimate there are less than 18,000 left in the ten western states combined.

Protect Mustangs is a conservation group devoted to protecting native wild horses. Their mission is to educate the public about the indigenous wild horse, protect and research American wild horses on the range and help those who have lost their freedom.

# # #

NAS Study Review

Media Contacts:

Anne Novak 415.531.8454 Anne@ProtectMustangs.org

Kerry Becklund, 510-502-1913  Kerry@ProtectMustangs.org

Links of interest: 

Washington Post: Independent panel: Wild horse roundups don’t work; use fertility drugs, let nature cull herds http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/energy-environment/independent-panel-to-recommend-changes-in-blm-wild-horse-program/2013/06/05/b65ba772-cdb3-11e2-8573-3baeea6a2647_story.html

Congressional letter requesting an NAS investigation: https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=sites&srcid=ZGVmYXVsdGRvbWFpbnxhbWVyaWNhbmhlcmRzNHxneDo1ZTFlMDQ1MzY4MzZiMzI3&pli=1

Information on native wild horses: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=562

NAS Press release June 5, 2013: http://www8.nationalacademies.org/onpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=13511

NAS Report: Using Science to Improve the BLM Wild Horse & Burro Program: A Way Forward http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13511

Sacramento Bee, Panel: Sterilize wild horses to cut population  Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2013/06/06/5475171/study-sterilize-horses-to-drop.html#storylink=cpy

GonaCon press release spins wild horse overpopulation myths: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/newsroom/2013/02/horse_vaccine_approval.shtml

ZonaStat-H EPA Pesticide Fact Sheet: http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_search/reg_actions/pending/fs_PC-176603_01-Jan-12.pdf

Princeton University: Wildlife and cows can be partners, not enemies, in the search for food http://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S32/93/41K10/index.xml?section=featured

Gone viral~ The Associated Press, March 24, 2013: Budget axe nicks BLM wild-horse adoption center http://www.denverpost.com/colorado/ci_22862206

US property exposed to wildfire valued at $136 billion says report: http://www.artemis.bm/blog/2012/09/17/u-s-property-exposed-to-wildfire-valued-at-136-billion-says-report/

KQED Horse fossil found in Caldecott Tunnel: http://science.kqed.org/quest/2011/05/26/new-fossils-from-the-caldecott-tunnel/

Horseback Magazine: Group takes umbridge at use of the word “feral” http://horsebackmagazine.com/hb/archives/19392

Protect Mustangs in the news: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=218

Protect Mustangs’ press releases: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=125

 

Critique of BLM’s Broken Wild Horse & Burro Program

Burros in Holding © Carl Mrozek

by Carl Mrozek, filmmaker: “Saving Ass in America” A documentary about the horrendous eradication of wild burros.  (release date: December 7th, 2013)

To their credit, the NAS critique of BLM totally discredits the BLM’s unscientific management methodology, particularly re: gauging population levels.  Unfortunately, they prescribe a primarily pharmaceutical remedy for a problem that hasn’t been established yet, i.e. ‘over-population’. How can you assert that there is overpopulation of wild horses and/or burros when you:

1. Don’t know what the population of horses or burros currently is, in a given HMA

2. Have no data-driven basis for gauging how many horses or burros a particular HMA can support. In practice BLM treats all habitats as being pretty much the same, and as resource poor, by requiring 1000+ acres/ horse or burro.

The NAS report also buys into BLM’s myth that wild horse & burro populations are increasing at a fairly constant rate of 15-20%/ year regardless of some radical differences in range quality between one HMA and another….

as well as radical differences in the structure, health and genetic viability of one herd vs. the next.

3. Fail to address the impacts of cattle and sheep upon rangelands, and upon wild horse reproductive success and recruitment rates

What I most appreciate about the NAS report is that they confirm key criticisms made by advocates, and ignored by the BLM, for a very long time including:

1.  the BLM’s population numbers are speculative at best, and fictitious at worst !

2.  the roundups are a counter-productive and inhumane solution to a problem (overpopulation) which may or may not exist in a given locale, at a given time.

3. the frequent and aggressive regime of roundups actually stimulates increased reproduction, migration and over-population, at -least where enough equines survive the roundups or can migrate from adjacent herd areas. This creates a vicious cycle wherein aggressive roundups create a need for more frequent and aggressive roundups.

Glaring omissions in the NAS report include:

1. The question of what constitutes “fair and balanced” apportionment of forage and water between horses and livestock on a given HMA, -which is critical to ascertaining whether the range is being overgrazed, how much, and by what animals. Without exception, livestock are allocated the lion’s share of available forage, typically upwards of 80%, -where data is even available.

2. what to do with the 37-50,000 horses and burros now languishing in long and short term holding. including what proportion should be returned to their rightful range, on what schedule…. etc. Until this ‘overpopulation problem’ is addressed, there will continue to be a wild horse ‘population crisis’ and a costly one at that.

3. How to induce an agency accustomed to being regarded by the world at large as the default authority on public rangeland capacity and on wild horse and burro population levels residing on them, to begin managing both on the basis of actual, current data rather than on data, or fudged numbers, of varying age and veracity and hence with questionable credibility.

Overall, though, the NAS panel indicted a sadly flawed, broken program in desperate need of a total makeover, starting with a basic need for fresh data and a scientific approach vs. the “Trust us because we’re the authorities on public lands and the wild equines that live there” which has prevailed for 40+ years that BLM has been tasked with managing this priceless heritage for all of US.

Nevada mustang © Carl Mrozek

Nevada mustang © Carl Mrozek

 

Watch for CBS Sunday Morning’s “Moment of Nature” -featuring mustangs that Carl shot in the NV PineNuts,  this Sunday at the end of the show!

A dark day for native wild horses ~ National Academy of Science Report published

Photo courtesy BLM

Photo courtesy BLM

The NAS report has been released and is found here.

 

Statement from Anne Novak, Executive Director of Protect Mustangs

We are grateful that the National Academy of Science (NAS) recommends stopping cruel roundups  but we challenge their decision to control alleged overpopulation like a domestic herd with humans deciding who survives and breeds.

NAS deploys the BLM overpopulation myth to push EPA restricted use PESTICIDES (Immunoconraceptive PZP & GonaCon®) as well as sterilization on Native #WildHorses.

This is part of the plan named after Ken Salazar, the previous Secretary of Interior, whose mission was to wipe wild horses off public land, stockpile them at taxpayer expense and send many into the alleged slaughter pipeline.

The Salazar Plan began in 2009 -10, despite public outrage. Its focus was to remove wild horses and burros to facilitate the energy and water grab on public land.

The renewables market abroad is hot. Fracking and exporting natural gas through pipelines across the West is causing environmental damage. Wild horses would require mitigation so they lobbied for the BLM to get rid of them.

The Salazar Plan feigns an overpopulation crisis to remove most native wild horses from their legally designated ranges and stockpile them in government holding. They are torn from their homes, families and at risk of being sold to probable slaughter.

Overpopulation is a MYTH used to ruin native wild horses. There are maybe 18,000 wild horses left on more than 31.6 million acres of public land designated for their use. They are reproducing at a higher rate because nature knows they face extinction from the gluttony of roundups since 2009. Immunocontraceptives are risky. Sterilizing them is wrong. Put the 50,000 in holding back on the range so they can fill their niche in the ecosystem.

We are witnessing the final attack on the indigenous horse and it must be halted.

Man-made fertility control will domesticate wild horses and wipe them out. Survival of the fittest is Mother Nature’s way to select who breeds to protect the herd.

Domestic horses are manipulated by man. Their weaknesses are evident as a result.

We ask the NAS, the BLM and certain members of the advocate community, “Do you really think man can choose who breeds better than nature? Do you realize that by supporting chemical fertility control many will be sterilized and loose their place in the herd?”  What happens when they all die off?  Will you then realize they were never overpopulated?”

# # #

 

Statement from Jesica Johnston, MA Environmental Planning

The National Academy of Science’s findings clearly state that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has failed to provide accurate estimates of the nation’s population of wild horses and burros. Therefore, the NAS cannot conclude that a state of over-population exists and or provide a recommendation for artificial management considerations such as “rigorous fertility controls” to control populations for which the complex population dynamics are currently unknown. However, the NAS is recommending science-based methods to improve current management practices, population estimates, and the overall health of the ecosystem which could provide key information toward sustainable and effective management that could prevent the removal of wild horses and burros from our public lands.

# # #

Dead wild horse (Photo © Craig Downer)

Dead wild horse (Photo © Craig Downer)

Statement from Craig C. Downer, M.S., Wildlife Biologist, Wild Horse Expert, Author and Founder of the Andean Tapir Fund

BLM plans to use “aggressive birth control” to prevent the expansion of the wild horse/burro populations that remain. Chief among the drugs to be used is PZP (porcine zona pellucida). This injected drug covers the eggs, or ova, of mares, preventing sperm from fertilizing them. It is experimental, however, and has some questionable effects upon the horses themselves, both individually and collectively. For example, its effect leads to mares’ repeatedly recycling into estrous, thus stimulating stallions to repeatedly mount the treated mares — all to no avail. This frustrating situation causes much stress among individuals of both sexes and a general disruption of the social order, both within bands and, as a consequence, within the herds themselves.

Other unintended consequences of PZP are out-of-season births occurring after PZP’s effect has worn off after a year or two.  These births have been observed during the colder late autumn and winter seasons (e.g. Pryor Mountains her by G. Kathrens) and their un-timeliness causes suffering and death among both foals and their mothers.

# # #

The underside of a skull, showing palate and teeth, of Equus scotti is seen in this photo provided by the San Bernardino County Museum. The remains of the Ice Age horse were found for the first time at Tule Springs in Nevada.

The underside of a skull, showing palate and teeth, of Equus scotti is seen in this photo provided by the San Bernardino County Museum. The remains of the Ice Age horse were found for the first time at Tule Springs in Nevada.

Statement from Debbie Coffey, Director of Wild Horse Affairs, Wild Horse Freedom Federation

PZP and other fertility control should NOT be used on non-viable herds.   Most of the remaining herds of wild horses are non-viable.  The NAS and any advocacy groups that are pushing PZP and other fertility control have not carefully studied all of the caveats in Dr. Gus Cothran’s genetic analysis reports along with the remaining population of each herd of wild horses.
# # #

 

By U.S. Government [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By U.S. Government [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Statement from Jennie Barron, Director of Wild Horse Hub Central

1. Wild horse mares that are darted with PZP can become permanently sterile, making the viability of the herd impossible as the older mares die, there are no mares to have foals.

2.  If the Lead Mares are darted with PZP, they can become sterile, making the family herd disorganized; the stallion does not understand why she won’t foal; and she may leave the family herd she knows because of the disorientated. This has happened with older mares as they are not able to foal and they are the lead mares, leaving no mare to teach them where to graze, find minerals, water, or when to do certain things that wild horse herd families do.

3.  The mares who are pregnant after they have been darted with PZP can and do foal out of season. This means that they can not keep enough milk for the foal; and the winter weather is too harsh for the foal to survive. Prognosis: death.

4.  Considering the consequences stated above, this is too risky a business to lay at the feet of an already depleted wild horse herd. It must be taken into consideration that PZP is just as dangerous as a mountain lion, it is permanent, and it is deadly.

# # #

(Photo © Anne Novak, all rights reserved.)

(Photo © Anne Novak, all rights reserved.)

Statement from Carl Mrozek, Filmmaker of Saving Ass in America

To its credit the extensive review of the BLM’s failed Wild Horse & Burro Program criticized the agency for relying primarily on aggressive culling of wild herds primarily via helicopter roundups which “perpetuate the overpopulation problem by maintaining the number of animals at levels below the carrying capacity of the land, protecting the rangeland and the horse population in the short term but resulting in continually high population growth and exacerbating the long-term problem” the National Academy of Sciences” declared in a preliminary press release.  What they’re referring to is the principle of compensatory reproduction by heavily-stressed wildlife populations needing to rebound from population declines due to many factors.

Unfortunately, they quickly recommend a different intervention as a better solution without considering the ‘ do nothing”  or ‘placebo’ option which is an integral component of every credible field trial for pharmaceutical and other ‘treatment plans. Had they searched for examples of herds which have undergone minimal or no culling in the past decade or so, they would have found multiple examples of herds which appear to have achieved homeostasis (equilibrium) or something approaching it, naturally, i.e. without BLM-sponsored roundups or fertility treatments.

At least two mustang herds I’ve observed and filmed in Nevada and Arizona over the past 5-7 years meet those criteria, and some burro herds as well. The important point to remember, is that all of those herds cost the taxpayer virtually zilch to maintain in the wild. This contrasts with the cash-intensive hands-on management strategy revolving around helicopter roundups, warehousing of captured animals for life in long term and short term corrals and feedlots, as well as the fertility treatments, -the least costly and disruptive of these predominant management methodologies.

The bottom line is that sometimes we can do more, and do better, by doing less, or by letting Mother Nature do what she does best: sow and weed.

Hopefully, this option is explored somewhere in the freshly released report, and will be actively considered by the new hierarchy at BLM and the Dept. of Interior, and with much more intensive collaboration with wild equine afiscionados  committed to the survival of these herds in the wild as intended by the Free Ranging Wild Horse & Burro Act of 1971.

# # #

 

PM Hazard Foter Public domain Marked Sterilize

 

Statement from  Jaime Jackson, Executive Director and the founder of the Association for the Advancement of Natural Horse Care Practices

“Whether wild horses are sterilized or chemically “contraceptized”, at stake are the forces of natural selection being usurped by what will be tantamount to a program of “domestication eugenics” — humans determining who gets to breed and who doesn’t in wild horse country. If that door is opened, we will have turned drug companies and profiteers loose on our wild horses. We now know with certainty that such veterinary/medical interventions cause laminitis, colic, and other types of metabolic breakdown and disease. More drugs will then be needed. Thus, more profits will be pocketed. A brutal cycle is unleashed that causes harm to any horse, wild or domesticated.

“…What we are talking about here is the de facto domestication and subsequent contamination and destruction of America’s wild, free-roaming horses. It is bad enough what we’re also doing to another 51,000 who are captured, and stand idly by at tax payers expense in government holding corrals and private “preserves”? Support the misguided’s push to turn wild horses into pathological parodies of their personal horses? No thanks!

“The AANHCP offers another vision for genuine wild horse preservation that clear thinking people should be able to understand. This vision will do all things that eugenics can never do. And humanely so without compromising natural selection or burdening the tax payer. So, if you really want to help our wild horses, say no to the Obama Administration and the National Academy of Science’s “zero them out” for the corporate land grab, say no to [any] eugenics visions, and no to the drug companies and PZP (and other) pharmaceutical patent holders hungering for the ovaries, testes, and DNA of our America’s wild, free-roaming horses in the name of profiteering at the animal’s genetic expense.

# # #

Sam (#3275) is from California's High Rock area (Photo by BLM)

Sam (#3275) is from California’s High Rock area (Photo by BLM)

Statement from Valerie Price, Biological Researcher

PZP is a pathogen derived immunocontraceptive vaccine, it SHOULD be intended for use ONLY in captive animals. PZP stands for Porcine Zona Pellucida. This, and other immunocontraceptive vaccines are derived from pathogenic bacterias. PZP contains Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the organism that causes tuberculosis in humans and many species of livestock, including cattle. The bacterial component of the vaccine is supposed to be a killed form, but due to the potential for bad lots causing live tuberculosis to be transmitted to humans and animals, and due to concern over the possibility of contaminating the food web, PZP would have been unlikely to recieve approval by the FDA. Instead, the EPA approved PZP as a pesticide, leaving public health professionals in ignorance of the biological nature of this vaccine. It remains unclear whether the restrictions for use allow for any PZP treated animals to be released into the wild. While such a release could pose an ongoing threat to public health for both humans and animals, the effectiveness of PZP as an immunocontraceptive vaccine is negated by only 10% immigration or emmigration into treated herds, according to a study conducted by Texas Parks and Wildlife with captive, white tail deer.

A recent clinical study in cats treated with PZP found a high percentage of injection site abscesses. Rumours of abscesses occurring in horses treated with PZP by the BLM has raised the spectre of possible bad lots of vaccine already having been used. Human exposure to tuberculosis could possibly be a concern and it is recommended that all BLM agents and equine advocates who have come in contact with the vaccine, or with treated animals, be tested for tuberculosis, to ensure the bio-security of the public.

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PM Gov Land Map.jpg.jpe

Statement from Lisa LeBlanc, Independent Researcher & Equine Advocate:
We can not depend on ‘estimates’ of on-the-range populations or the accuracy of ‘reports’ of nearly 50,000 in captivity; neither history nor biology support the Bureau’s claims. There is a supposition that wild equine advocates have no notion of the enormity of wild or captive wild populations due to a ‘sympathetic’ response, but we can only base our data on the information we’re given, and the knowledge we already possess. For example:

Absence of any data indicating mortality, either on-the-range or in holding.

Denial of ‘reciprocal’ breeding, that is, the animal’s biological imperative to replace what’s been taken.

Absence of knowledge of specific herds and their behaviors, key factors in determining accuracy of foaling rates, which often fall far below the National average of 20%.

On-the-range herd management must be as accurate as possible, visually documented for Public use and managed through science and study. How can effective management occur if the basis of all aspects is ‘estimate’?

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Check back for more statements from wild horse and burro influencers. We are updating this page.

 

Public outraged over the EPA approving pesticides for NATIVE wild horses

PM Pesticides Sign  Colin Grey : Foter.com : CC BY-SA

Colin Grey : Foter.com : CC BY-SA

for immediate release

Historic burros will die off if drug causes sterility

WASHINGTON (February 15, 2013)–Americans are outraged to learn the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved a second pesticide. for native wild horses when extreme roundups since 2009 have removed the majority of wild horses from public land. Today more thank 50,000 are stockpiled in government holding facilities. In 2012 the EPA approved ZonaSta-H for wild horses and burros under their pesticide program. This week the EPA approved GonaCon™ a long term infertility drug that has sometimes allegedly sterilized wild horses after one application. So few heritage burros remain that giving them harsh fertility control could wipe them out completely.

“Pesticides must not be used on native species and current science proves wild horses are natives,” states Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs. “The mustangers are working at the BLM these days–hiding behind inflated population guesstimates and feral beliefs. Meanwhile they are selling truckloads of native wild horses to alleged kill buyers like Tom Davis who bought at least 1,700.”

In Wild Horses as Native North American Wildlife (Revised January 2010)  J.F.Kirkpatrick Ph.D., and Patricia M. Fazio Ph.D. wrote:

The key element in describing an animal as a native species is (1) where it originated; and (2) whether or not it co‐evolved with its habitat. Clearly, E. 6 caballus did both, here in North American. There might be arguments about “breeds,” but there are no scientific grounds for arguments about “species.”

The non‐native, feral, and exotic designations given by agencies are not merely reflections of their failure to understand modern science but also a reflection of their desire to preserve old ways of thinking to keep alive the conflict between a species (wild horses), with no economic value anymore (by law), and the economic value of commercial livestock.

As a native species, wild horses create biodiversity and help heal the land. Predators exist and more can be introduced as needed while herds self-regulate. Today it’s difficult to find the herds. The BLM has rounded up the majority of the wild horses and burros in all ten western states–far more than they can adopt out.

Protect Mustangs, the native wild horse preservation group, calls for the EPA to immediately retract their approval of “pesticides” for native wild horses. They have requested that all the wild horses in government holding be returned to the Herd Management Areas designated for them under the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act. The horse originated in America.  Wild horses are indigenous and must also be protected according to The Act.

Despite the government’s overpopulation spin, witnesses on the range have observed a shocking decline in wild horse and burro population since 2008.

Carl Mrozeck, journalist and independent filmmaker making Saving Ass in America, chuckled at the BLM’s inflated estimates of burros. “Personally, I’d be shocked if there were even close to the more recent optimistic number of 2,000.”

For years, the BLM has refused advocates’ requests to perform accurate independent census. “Population myths should not drive policy, merit Congressional funding nor justify passing risky infertility vaccines approved as pesticides,” adds Novak.

PEER reported that livestock has ruined the range yet the BLM refuses to address the issue. The BLM always tries to scapegoat the wild horses for typical cattle damage. Cows outnumber wild horses at least 50 to 1 on the range.

Despite public outcry, the BLM has already removed the majority of indigenous mustangs and historic burros from millions of acres of public land.  The BLM is removing the wild horses and burros to minimize environmental studies and mitigation in order to fast track toxic drilling projects on public land. The BLM confesses to making tons of money off the extractive industry as stated in the bottom of their press release: http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/info/newsroom/2013/february/NR_02_01_2013.html

Protect Mustangs asks the BLM to acknowledge wild horses are a native species in order to manage them correctly.

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Media Contacts:

Anne Novak, 415-531-8454  Anne@ProtectMustangs.org

Kerry Becklund, 510-502-1913  Kerry@ProtectMustangs.org

Photos, video and interviews are available upon request.

Links of interest:

Daryl Hannah and Michael Blake speak out about wild horses, burros and toxic drilling: http://protectmustangs.org/?p=3866

PEER reports: BLM ducks complaint about suppressing livestock damage: http://protectmustangs.org/?p=3367

Native wild horses: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=562

Saving Ass in America https://www.facebook.com/SavingAssInAmerica

EPA approves GonaCon™: http://protectmustangs.org/?p=3851

EPA calls iconic wild horses “pests” http://protectmustangs.org/?p=1204

USFA APHIS Press release: USDA-Developed Vaccine for Wild Horses and Burros Gains EPA Registration: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/newsroom/2013/02/horse_vaccine_approval.shtml

PM GonaCon Warning- 56228-40 GonaCon

See it: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wildlife_damage/nwrc/registration/content/56228-40%20GonaCon%2007-11SPECIMEN.pdf

 

Photo courtesy BLM

Photo courtesy BLM

Stop the Roundups Rally in Sacramento July 10th at 2 pm outside the Federal Courthouse

Come to the rally to show that you care about the wild horses and burros in America.

Terri Farley speaks at the Rally to Stop the Roundups (Photo © Anne Novak.)

The Sacramento Stop the Roundups Rally and Press Conference is at 2 p.m. July 10th on the sidewalk outside the Federal Courthouse across from the Amtrak station. ( 501 ” I ” Street at the 5th Street intersection in Sacramento, CA 95814)

Here is a list of speakers:

Carla Bowers, National Wild Horse Advocate

Tina Brodrick, Owner of Sonny Boys Tours

Craig Downer, Wildlife Biologist and acclaimed Wild Horse and Burro Expert

Terri Farley, Award winning writer and beloved author of The Phantom Stallion series

Cat Kindsfather, Award winning wild horse photographer

Marilyn Kroplick, MD, Board President for In Defense of Animals

Simone Netherlands, President of Respect for Horses

Anne Novak, Executive Director of Protect Mustangs

Jetara Séhart, Executive Director of Native Wild Horse Protection & Marin Mustangs

Robin Warren  (Wild Mustang Robin), Director of The Youth Campaign for Protect Mustangs

Bring homemade signs and your friends. It will be hot so bring a rain umbrella for shade and plenty of water. Protect Mustangs encourages members of the public to carpool or take Amtrak to save on fuel and reduce pollution. Oil and gas extraction–on public land–is one of the main reasons wild horses are being wiped off their home on the range.  Be part of the solution and take the train if you can.

The voiceless wild horses and burros need your help after the rally too. Give oral or written comment against helicopter roundups and attend the 6:30 pm BLM Wild Horse & Burro Helicopter/Vehicle Use Public Hearing for roundups and management. The meeting runs from 6:30-8:30 PM at the Woodlake Hotel (formerly the Radisson near Arden Fair Mall) 500 Leisure Lane in Sacramento.

“Like” and check for updates on our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/ProtectMustangs

Join the dynamic conversation on Facebook about helicopter roundups: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=387209591338066&set=a.240625045996522.58710.233633560029004&type=1&theater

Driving directions from the rally to the meeting:

Driving directions to 500 Leisure Ln, Sacramento, CA 95815
501 I St
Sacramento, CA 95814
1. Head north on 5th St toward H St
194 ft
2. 5th St turns right and becomes H St
0.8 mi
3. Turn left onto CA-160 N/16th St

Continue to follow CA-160 N
2.3 mi
4. Take exit 47A for Leisure Ln towardCanterbury Rd
0.1 mi
5. Keep left at the fork, follow signs forLeisure
79 ft
6. Turn left onto Leisure Ln

Destination will be on the right
354 ft
500 Leisure Ln
Sacramento, CA 95815

Special thanks to Jetara Séhart, Executive Director of Native Wild Horse Protection & Marin Mustangs for her help to put together this event.

If you have any questions or would like to speak at the rally feel free to send us an email at Contact@ProtectMustangs.org

Come to the Sacramento Rally to Stop Helicopter Roundups July 10th

 

Note posted 6/24: Rally time is 10:30 AM ~ Location TBA in 48 hours

Here is a list of speakers as of this date

Craig Downer

Marjorie Farabee

Terri Farley

Ginger Kathrens

Elliot Katz

Carl Mrozek

Simone Netherlands

Shruti Tewari

Jetara True-Love

Robin Warren  (Wild Mustang Robin)

 

 

 

Carl needs airline miles and donations to fight for his civil liberties

Donations needed to fight for civil rights

Carl Mrozek, an American journalist and filmmaker from New York, believes his civil liberties were violated while filming a controversial Bureau of Land Management (BLM) wild burro roundup near Yuma, Arizona. After his footage from a previous roundup aired on AZ TV newscasts—showing a helicopter chasing a burro and flipping it over—BLM employees began harassing him. Then one day, in 103 degree weather, things got worse. His camera was ripped from his hands, he was manhandled, handcuffed and detained in a ranger vehicle until he passed out and was rushed to the emergency room. The BLM searched his belongings and took his video footage—all without his permission. Carl needs your help with airline miles and donations towards defending his civil liberties. Thank you for helping Carl stand up and fight this. Donate to eagleye@localnet.com via Paypal. Every dollar received will help fight this.