Perverted Darting with Pesticide PZP

10 things you need to know about Pesticide PZP

1. PZP — The Pesticide: PZP is an EPA-registered pesticide manufactured from the ovaries of slaughtered pigs. Some persons argue that, because PZP does not kill the mare, it is not really a “pesticide.” Actually, PZP does kill. Stillbirths are associated with the pesticide’s use, meaning that some of its supposed contraceptive effects are actually feticidal.. In addition, over the long term, PZP weakens a herd immunologically, putting it at risk for eventual or even sudden extinction.

2. PZP — The Disproved Hypothesis: PZP’s manufacturer promoted the product as generating antibodies that “block sperm attachment.” But that marketing-hype was merely an untested hypothesis postulated three decades ago. Independent researchers found that PZP has a different effect, and many adverse effects.

3. PZP — The Actual Mode-of-Action: Behaving like a perverted vaccine, PZP tricks the mare’s immune system into making antibodies that cause ovarian dystrophy, autoimmune oophoritis, ovarian cysts, and premature ovarian failure. PZP quickly sterilizes mares that have a strong immune system but has no effect on those suffering from weak immunity. Thus, PZP both works and doesn’t work but, in the long run, selects for poor immune function. Weak immunity = weak resistance to infection, which could quickly wipe out a herd. PZP also affects the foals. If a mare is pregnant or nursing when darted, PZP antibodies are transferred to her offspring via the placenta and her milk. So, inadvertently, unborn and newborn foals receive a dose or two of the pesticide when their dams are injected.

4. PZP — The Danger to Humans: PZP is a powerful endocrine-disruptor. It causes a sharp drop in estrogen levels. Unfortunately, because the manufacturer misrepresented PZP as “so safe it is boring,” volunteer-darters have become lax in following safety-precautions. Accidental self-injection could result in severe adverse effects because the dose-in-question is sized for a horse.

5. PZP — The Year-Round Birthing-Season: A longitudinal study (Ransom et al. 2013) of three herds currently under treatment with PZP found that the the birthing-season lasts virtually year-round (341 days). Out-of-season births put the life of mares and their foals in jeopardy. Nature designed foals to be born in Spring, not year-round, and certainly not in Winter.

6. PZP — Prolonged Delay in Recovery of Fertility: Ransom et al. also found that, after suspension of PZP, it takes more than a year per each year-of-treatment before mares recover their fertility. PZP’s manufacturer conceded that it could take up to 8 years to recover fertility after just 3 consecutive years of PZP treatment.

7. PZP — Scientists Say Proceed with Caution: Ransom et al. warned: “The transient nature of … PZP can manifest into extraordinary persistence of infertility with repeated vaccinations, and ultimately can alter birth phenology in horses. This persistence … suggests caution for use in small refugia ….”

8. PZP — Contraindicated for Tiny, Isolated Herds: Several years ago, BLM convened a meeting of scientists on the topic of minimum herd-size for genetic fitness. Conclusion: “Smaller, isolated populations (<200 total census size) are particularly vulnerable ….” And that’s without PZP in the mix.

9. Slow Herd-Growth: Per independent research, wild-horse herds increase at a rate of only 5% a year; and wild-burro herds, just 2%. Such slow growth does not warrant pesticide treatments administered en masse every year. Eventual sterilization is inevitable, with extinction of the herd over the long term.

10. Predators: The right way to right-size the wild-horse population is Nature’s way — predators. But those predators — mountain lions, bears, wolves, and coyotes — are persecuted mercilessly. Wildlife Services exterminates what trophy-hunters don’t shoot. Predators help the herds by favoring survival-of-the-fittest and the best genetic adaptations. Predators are the “no-cost” solution.

by Marybeth Devlin
Wild Horse Advocate

This mare waits in the alley before being led into the chute where her age and body condition will be checked. After being treated with the PZP fertility control agent, this mare will be released back to the Owyhee HMA.

Protect Mustangs is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of native and wild horses. www.ProtectMustangs.org



Wild horse overpopulation is fake news

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Will There Be a Healthy Future for America’s Wild Horses and Burros IN THE WILD?

PM Helicopter Mustang Roundup

(Roundup to administer Pesticide PZP for experiments)

PZP or Reserve Design? You Decide

By Craig C. Downer, Wildlife Ecologist, Wild Horse and Burro Fund

September 24th, 2016

On September 7th, 2016, I participated in the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board rangeland tour of the Antelope Valley Wild Horse Herd Management Area (HMA); and on September 8th, I again participated in this board’s official meeting at the historical Stockman’s Hotel in Elko, Nevada. Though both tour and meeting provided for some public input, these were “one slick operation” by BLM officials and certain members of the board. This event aimed to convince all board members as well as the public of a “wild horse overpopulation crisis” with a pre-meditated selection of sites to visit and points to make. And I can well understand why a person with little knowledge and background on wild horse and public lands issues or with a pre-existing selfish agenda could be easily stampeded into accepting the over-population myth.

Indeed, on Friday, September 9th, the board voted 8 to 1 to recommend disposal of ca. 44,000 wild horses and burros currently in holding throughout the United States. If accepted by the BLM, such a recommendation would result in the cruel killing of most of these national heritage animals.

Being all too aware of how wild horses and burros have been set up to fail, all too aware of how they have been used as scapegoats for ecological problems that overpopulated humans have basically caused, I was relieved that BLM officials did not – at least for now – accept their appointed board’s advice. I was also pleased to learn that BLM recently cancelled certain surgical sterilization experiments on over 200 captured wild mares in Oregon and others in Wyoming for which over $11 million dollars had been allocated.
The board’s recommendation would have been tantamount to murdering nearly all of the 44 thousand horses and burros in holding. This proposed bloodbath created an enormous national and international outcry, becoming a global bone of contention. And I find it heartening to see evidence that so many people care about the wild ones and their right to live freely and naturally.

Horses and their burro cousins are highly-evolved beings, fellow sojourners on planet Earth, companions who have lived and labored alongside us humans for many generations –even several millennia! What horses and humans have experienced together concerning Life’s unfolding story is truly awesome! Could this be why the cavalier disposal of the lives of so many horse souls rankles so deeply and with so many?

Today a great moral challenge stridently calls for us humans to more fairly and justly treat our fellow inhabitants of planet Earth. We must give these fellow conscious beings the life they deserve for a change! In the case at hand, horses present highly evolved beings present here on Earth for millions of years of free and natural living, often in wide-open spaces. In diverse ecosystems, they have developed intricate relationships with an astounding diversity of plants and animals and in a way that is truly splendid. As an ecologist, I realize that they are mutually complemental to the other species of fauna and flora. And that they are extraordinarily beautiful should give us some clue as to why they are pleasing to Heaven.

Such realizations occurred to those who established the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 (WFHBA). This was one of the first times Americans decided to do something major that was genuinely good for a fellow species. And it defied centuries, even millennia, of human self-absorption, thoughtlessness, cruelty and greed. For rather than merely continuing to take from, we humans actually chose to give back to horse kind something of true worth and excellence: their natural freedom to live on their rightful natural land, or home. In other words, to be themselves!

Along with the Wilderness and similar acts, the WFHBA was a “great forward leap for mankind.” Yet, an “all-points bulletin” today concerns our government’s emerging plans for America’s last remaining wild horses and burros. As a wildlife ecologist and even more as a human being who appreciates horses in the wild, I perceive their enemies not only among those traditionally opposed to them, but in our very government and even among people who claim to be wild horse advocates yet who are quick to overly compromise the future of these wild horses and burros as naturally living Earthlings! Why are the latter buckling under to the wild horses’ and burros’ traditional detractors and enemies? It seems that they are being duped into conceding to plans that will only ensure the decline of the wild herds? Many of us believe that this pusillanimous position must not pass! (No pasara! as we speakers of Spanish say.)

Core to what’s wrong are the so-called “Appropriate Management Levels” (AMLs) that have been assigned to the legal wild horse and wild burro herds on their legal lands throughout the West, both on BLM and US Forest Service lands. And along with these, the failure to fairly allocate natural resources for truly viable populations. These AMLs are simply much too low! They are genetically non-viable and would result in under-populated herds.

Any group of creatures that senses itself to be underpopulated usually “struggles to survive,” as Charles Darwin so aptly stated. Herd numbers as well as the locations and sizes of Herd Management Areas (HMAs) have been too arbitrarily set to fit the demands of cattle and sheep ranchers, big mining corporations, expansion-hooked land developers, ORV rippers up of the land, and the kill-focused hunting establishment. As is so typical, the root of the problem lies with that thoughtlessness and greed that infects too many humans today. The consequence has been many millions of acres of zeroed-out, though still legal, herd areas, and herd sizes and the sizes and habitat composition of HMAs (BLM) and Territories (US Forest Service) that are simply not adequate to the long-term survival needs of those wild horses and burros who still remain. To my very bones I feel that we humans must rise to the great moral challenge concerning the horses and burros and their right to live free. And this also has to do with our own success as a species, for it concerns obeying the laws of Higher Justice that govern the universe.

Truly realizing and living the noble intent of the WFHBA will make America great again, allow it to stand uprightly on solid moral ground. We shall learn to share the land and freedom with the wild ones, and this lesson shall be our salvation. We shall no longer restrict and exploit such “paragons of Nature” as the horses and their rightful lands in such a way that denies them their true place in the world we share with them as home. Today we have arrived at a crucial crossroad, a critical turning point:

Faulty PZP-type Choice for America’s Wild Horses and Burros

Shall we only continue to restrict and distort the true natures of the horses and burros and to ever greater degrees, as well as their proper habitats here on Earth? Shall we only continue to deny them genuine freedom here on Earth by condoning marginally productive, water-deprived, and un-whole habitats that have been carelessly and deviously assigned for them? Shall we be cornered into accepting the application of harmful, FDA-classified pesticides such as Porcine Zona Pelucida, or PZP, GonaCon, SpayVac, etc.?

These drugs, vaccines, inhibitors of healthy horses – call them what you like – only distort and suppress the true health and well-being of vigorous wild horses and burros! And then do we expect the wild horses and burros so violated to fit into unfairly small and inadequate habitats that do not provide their long-term survival needs? No! Such marginal habitats, substandard population numbers, and biologically compromised individuals are simply unacceptable! They would not be genetically viable and would only set the horses and burros up for inbreeding suppression while at the same time preventing their filling their ecological niches in a harmoniously adapted way. And these animals already face enough survival challenges without having to deal with the violation of their most intimate parts!

Is PZP really a solution that works for the horses/burros?

I have participated in many wild horse and burro meetings and heard talks given by experts describing PZP and its actions on wild horses, including by PZP’s inventor Dr. Jay Kirkpatrick and by Dr. Daniel Rubenstein, a behavioral zoologist who has studied PZPed wild horses in nature. I have also perused many scientific and popular articles about the effects of PZP upon wild horses, both short- and long-term, and both upon individuals and their social groups.

Here are some of the major proven damages to wild horses caused by PZP:

(1) PZP weakens immune systems of individuals and their herds since it inhibits reproduction in horses with stronger immune systems. Horses with weaker immune systems are precisely those who reproduce in greater numbers in PZP-treated herds. Eventually, PZP weakens wild horse herds’ overall immune systems. (Reference: Gray, M.E. & Cameron, E.Z. 2010. Does contraceptive treatment in wildlife result in side effects? Reproduction 139: 45-55.)

(2) Increased stress is experienced by mares who have been successfully darted by PZP and by other members of their social bands. This is because of PZPed mares’ frustration in completing their natural reproductive cycle, which affects the other members of their bands. Ironically, it is precisely the mature and stable, more content and non-PZPed bands that do, in fact, cause a slowing of reproductive rates, as years of research by the International Society for the Protection of Mustangs and Burros (ISPMB) and others abundantly proves. (Reference: Sussman, Karen. 6/6/2015. Suspicious deaths with use of anti-fertility drugs. ISPMB Journal. www.ispmb.org/BirthControlDeaths.html.)

(3) PZP adversely affects mares’ hormonal systems and consequently the social groups to which they belong. PZPed mares become irritable, aggressive, and more masculine, causing disharmony in their bands. PZP lowers estrogen and increases testosterone in mares and also produces ovarian cysts. Cysts increase testosterone levels. (Reference: U.S. National Library of Medicine. National Institutes of Health. Ovarian overproduction of androgens. (Reference: https://www.nim.nih.gov/medicineplus/ency/article/001165.htm.)

(4) Auto-immune oophoritis, aka ovaritis or inflammation of ovaries, and also stillbirths result from PZP. Autoimmune oophoritis can lead to the development of other autoimmune diseases. (Reference: Kaur, K. & Prabha, V. 2014. Immunocontraceptives: New Approaches to Fertility Control. BioMed Research International, Vol. 2014, Article ID: 868196.)

(5) PZP-darted herds in Little Book Cliffs, McCullough Peaks, and Pryor Mountains wild horse legal herd management areas gave birth nearly year-round, i.e. 341 days, rather than in the normal spring season. This exposed PZPed wild mares and their offspring to extremes of temperature, and, consequently, to suffering and death. (Reference: Ransom, J.I. et al. 2013. Contraception Can Lead to Trophic Asynchrony between Birth Pulse and Resources. PLoS ONE 8(1): e54972. Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054972.

(6) It is quite disturbing that PZP antibodies transfer to foals from the mare through the placenta while they are in the womb as well as through mare’s milk. These antibodies react with and bind to the zona pellucida of female newborns. Yet, BLM regularly administers PZP to pregnant and lactating mares in spite of these published scientific findings. (Reference: Sacco, A.G. et al. 1981. Passage of zona antibodies via placenta and milk following active immunization of female mice with porcine zonae pellucidae. Journal of Reproductive Immunology. 1981, December; Vol 3, Issue 6: pages 313-322.)

(7) Weakening of immune system subjects wild horses to mal-adaptiveness to unforeseen major changes such as are occurring due to Global Warming, or catastrophes such as epidemics or wildfires. (Reference: Gray & Cameron, 2010, op cit.)

(8) PZP causes the immune system to attack and destroy the ovaries and produces a large variety of adverse effects. (References: Gray & Cameron, 2010, op cit.; Kaur & Prabha, 2014, op. cit.)

(9) By extending the lifespans of PZPed mares, PZP creates abnormal numbers of aged, sterile mares. This disadvantages younger horses, who continue to be taken away by BLM roundups to reach arbitrary AMLs. This appeases livestock or other wild-horse-adverse interests on the public lands, rather than respecting the General Public, whose majority values wild horses and burros and wants them to be fairly treated. (Reference: Knight, C.M. & Rubenstein, D.I. 2014. The Effects of Porcine Zona Pellucida Immunocontraception on Health and Behavior of Feral Horses (Equus caballus). Princeton University thesis, Dept. Ecology & Evolutionary Biology.)

(10) PZPed mares are no longer reproductively active in the wild horse population, thus diminishing the genetic viability of the herd. The resources they consume would otherwise contribute to reproducing adults and their offspring and maintain the vigor of the herd into ongoing future generations that adapt to ongoing environmental changes, thus assuring their long-term survival. (Reference: Ransom, J.I. et al. 2013, op. cit.)

(11) PZP is a safety hazard to humans, especially to females who administer it. (Reference: Devlin, M. and Protect Mustangs 2015. Fact Sheet: The Truth about PZP. http://protectmustangs.org/?p=8749.)

For these and related reasons, I believe that PZP will seriously harm and undermine the vigor of wild horse and burro populations that our nation’s laws mandate us to protect and preserve, as well as to manage. The restoration and maintenance of herd vigor is essential to the ongoing ecological adaptation and long-term survival of each herd. Healthy reproduction is key to healthy wild horse and burro individuals, bands and herds. Tampering with reproduction produces a variety of aberrations that lead to dysfunctional and disordered wild horses. This results in a decline of the herds.

I have heard from many people who closely observe and/or live near wild horses treated with PZP. They describe many still-born or defective foals produced by mares in whom the effects of PZP have worn off, permitting them to again try to reproduce. Also please consider that after a few to several years of yearly application, PZP generally produces total sterility in mares, depending upon the strength of their individual immune systems. This calls into serious question the proclaimed “reversibility of PZP” to enable mares to reproduce again! To reiterate: of great concern is the fact that PZP is less effective in those mares with weakened immune systems. Hence, the wide-spread use of PZP among America’s last wild horse/burro herds – nearly all below minimum viable population (MVP) level – will seriously undermine their long term survival.

But thankfully there exists an honorable alternative to PZP, and similar horse-disrespectful “quick fixes”. As a wildlife ecologist, I have formulated a sound alternative to PZP and similar invasive proposals. This Reserve Design strategy would restore long-term viable, ecologically well-adapted, and naturally self-stabilizing populations of wild horses and burros throughout the West. (References concerning Reserve Design: Peck, S. 1998. Reserve Design. In: Planning for Biodiversity: Issues and Examples. Island Press, Washington, D.C. Pages 89-114; Soule, M.E. & Terborgh, J. 1999. Continental Conservation: Scientific Foundations of Regional Reserve Networks. Island Press, Washington, D.C.; Downer, C.C. 2010. Proposal for wild horse/burro reserve design as a solution to present crisis. Natural Horse Volume 12, Issue 5, pages 26 to 27; Downer, C.C. 2014. The Wild Horse Conspiracy, www.amazon.com/dp/1461068983, look up “Reserve Design” in Index.)

Reserve Design: the Intelligent and Caring Choice for America’s Wild Horses and Burros

If followed correctly, the unanimously passed WFHBA would have set aside somewhere between 54 million and 90 million acres for the preservation of wild horses and burros in the wild. Lamentably, the rights of these animals—and their human supporters—have been undermined by wild horse and burro enemies, including officials charged with their protection. Current policies toward these “national heritage species” are thinly disguised plans for reducing the herds to cripplingly low, non-viable population numbers. These levels would be unable to sufficiently and adequately reproduce so as to survive into the long-term future. Too often the plan has been to simply eliminate them from their legal areas, i.e. “zero-out”. Indeed, anywhere from 22 million to 40 or more million legal acres have been declared officially empty and “not for” the wild horses and burros or simply ignored at the onset of the WFHBA in the early years of this act (see Downer, C.C. 2014. The Wild Horse Conspiracy).

Some wild horse advocates and observers say there are only 33,000 wild horses and burros remaining on America’s public lands as independently estimated for mid-2016 (Louise, Katia, wild horse documentary filmmaker, pers. comm.). Even if the official BLM figure of 67,027 wild horse and burros remain on the public lands (55,311 horses & 11,716 burros [BLM report of March 1, 2016]), either level would be out of step with the amount of ecologically appropriate habitat where these animals have a legal right to live. The small number of horses and burros our government intends to leave on each of the ca. 179 remaining BLM-designated areas is a sure prescription for the over-fragmentation and isolation of wild horse/burro populations. This would only jeopardize their long-term survival, compromising their true vigor in the wild.

The nationwide population of wild horses and burros that our government plans to allow as the high end Appropriate Management Level is only 26,715. This would be composed of only 1,676 individual wild horses and/or burros in Arizona; 2,200 in California, 812 in Colorado, 617 in Idaho, 120 in Montana, 12,811 in Nevada, 83 in New Mexico, 2,715 in Oregon, 1,956 in Utah, and 3,725 in Wyoming. (Source: Herd Area and Herd Management Area Statistics as of March 1, 2016. BLM, Washington, D.C.) These assigned population levels are very unfair and cater to wild horse and burro detractors while largely disregarding the General Public that are strongly support this Quality of Life issue.

Our government’s current goal of and plans for drastically reducing small and genetically vulnerable wild herds include the partial—and very possibly total—sterilization of mares through PZP injection. These plans also include the unnatural skewing of sex ratios to establish excess males, even in the naturally harem social structure of naturally living horses in which females are usually more numerous. And even more invasive measures have been planned in the past and are likely to crop up again, including painful—often lethal castration of stallions and the ovariectomies (removal of ovaries) of mares (thankfully recently cancelled in Oregon and Wyoming), as well as the individually deranging and socially disruptive injection of sterilization drugs or vaccines, such as PZP.

Clearly, our wild horses and burros are in a very critical situation today. I judge them to be more imperiled than they were in 1971 just before the passage of the WFHBA when they were “fast disappearing from the American scene”—and I used to work with Wild Horse Annie. We must quickly respond with a well-conceived plan for reforms that will restore the true rights of wild horses and burros upon our public lands. These lands belong to all Americans, not just to resource exploiters, whether officials of corporations or private individuals. As a wildlife ecologist and deeply rooted native Nevadan personally familiar with many of the West’s wild horse and burro herds, I strongly urge the restoration of these deeply rooted North American native species. Their return to North America should be as genetically viable and naturally self-stabilizing herds that are allowed too adapt ecologically to each specific region where they have legal right. This can be accomplished by following the sound principles of Reserve Design. Such a plan would end cruel, disruptive roundups and reproductive manipulations – practices that mock the true intent of the 1971 WFHBA by causing untold suffering and death to these beautiful and highly evolved, sensitive, wise, and freedom-loving creatures.

Reserve Design combines ecological, biological, social, and political considerations in order to achieve desired results. Basically, it involves setting aside areas of complete year-round habitat where human intervention is buffered against and where natural processes are allowed to reestablish natural checks and balances. Reserve Design will achieve internal harmony for the diverse, yet interrelated, species living within each wild horse/burro-containing ecosystem.

Critical steps for realizing Reserve Design in wild horse and wild burro habitats are as follows:

[1] Properly identify the long-term survival requirements for viable equid population levels to be accommodated in each reserve. Our chief focus would be to promote wild horse/burro-containing ecosystems of adequate size and condition to sustain viable equid populations and where plant and animal species are allowed to adapt naturally over the generations and in inter-balanced fashion. The level of 2,500 individual has been recommended for the viability of an equid population by the IUCN SSC Equid Survival Group (Equid Action Plan, IUCN SSC ESG, 1992).

[2] Conscientiously identify appropriate ecological areas suitable for the implementation of wild horse/burro-containing reserves. This would involve travel to, on-ground inspection of, flights over, and GIS analysis of a wide variety of places throughout the West. This would also entail setting up Cooperative Agreements under Sections 4 and 6 of the WFHBA in order to achieve complete habitats around the federally designated wild equid lands and involving both private and other government lands such as state and local.

[3] Wherever possible, wisely incorporate natural equid predators (such as puma, bear, and wolf) that would both limit and tone/strengthen, wild horse and burro populations.

[4] Wherever possible, wisely incorporate natural barriers that would limit the ingress and/or the egress of certain species, including the wild horses and burros. This would avoid conflicts and set up conditions for the natural self-regulation of populations.

[5] Identify where buffer zones, artificial barriers, or other means of impeding movements in and out of a reserve should be established in order to keep the species in question from coming into conflict with humans. Buffer zones possibly involving non-injurious means of “adverse conditioning” could be employed as well as “positive reinforcement” as a means of encouraging the wild equids to stay within the reserve, as for example, by providing all of their habitat needs. Also, “semi-permeable barriers” that do not restrict most species but do prevent equids from passing out of the reserve may be used. These means would be described in practical detail and as tailored to fit each specific reserve area.

[6] Identify the presence and abundance of necessary food, water, shelter, mineral procurement sites, elevation gradients for seasonal migrations, etc., that will accommodate the long-term habitat needs of long-term viable wild equid populations. Such will also allow the natural rest-rotation of foraging between the natural subdivisions of the reserve. Fences within the reserve that impede the free-roaming lifestyle of the wild equids will be located and their removal accomplished. The intrinsic Carrying Capacity of the land in question will also be estimated as closely as possible. Such will be based upon the Productivity of forage adequate to at least a minimally viable population of wild horses/burros. Besides food, this determination will take into account other survival factors such as water, minerals, shelter, breeding and nurturing habitat, seasonal migrations, and needed protection from existing threats to the wild equids.

[7] Identify geographical regions whose human inhabitants are benignly disposed toward the creation and long-term implementation of extensive, ecologically balanced wild horse/burro-containing reserves. This would involve traveling to different areas and setting up meetings with pertinent individuals, town and government officials, etc. This also relates to the setting up of Cooperative Agreements under Sections 4 and 6 of the WFHBA, as mentioned above.

[8] Identify ways of and benefits from implementing Reserve Design that result in win-win relationships centered on the presence of wild horses and burros. Ecotourism is one major possibility here, and wild horse/burro viewing tours have already proven to be successful in several states, including Craig London’s tours to the Montgomery Pass wild horses of eastern California. Restoring native ecosystems, including soils and native species, would be a major ecological benefit. The reduction of flammable vegetation through equid grazing and the restoration of hydrographic basins through the enrichment of soils, would be other major, positive contributions by wild horses and burros. Another major benefit concerns the prevention of catastrophic wildfires that over-burn vegetation, sterilize soils and denature their stored seed banks. Such fires can set the life community back to very primitive evolutionary stages. Indeed, it can be strongly argued that the restoration of wild equids in North America is crucial to combating life-disrupting Global Warming itself.

[9] Of key importance is informing the public concerning the many ways that horses and burros, as ecological “climax” species, self-limit their own populations once their respective ecological niches are filled in any given bounded area. This knowledge is key to realizing a humane relationship with these animals, a relationship that does justice to and demonstrates respect for them. And it is this respect and appreciation on the part of us humans that is key to allowing the horses and burros to fulfill their important natural roles within the life community.

Whom to Contact to Help Wild Horses and Burros:

Please contact your Senators and Representatives, the President, the Secretary of Interior and its Bureau of Land Management; and the Secretary of Agriculture and its US Forest Service. Both of these agencies are mandated by the WFHBA to preserve and protect as well as to manage the wild horses and burros and their legal lands and resources for the benefit of the former.

Also contact your state governor and state, county, and municipal officials concerned with wildlife and natural resources. Get in touch with the media: newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations. Make all of the above aware of what is needed to stop the over-reduction or zeroing-out of the herds and the cruel abuse of wild horses and burros, whether through drugging, vaccines, surgeries, or other unnatural and invasive methods. Rather, persist in the restoration of the wild horse and burro herds and their habitats to viable levels, healthy conditions and sizes. This will be to restore the pure intent of the law.

A key committee to contact right away is the U.S. House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee, particularly its Interior, Environment & Related Agencies Subcommittee. The telephone number of the latter is (202) 225-3081. Emails of staff to contact are betsy.bina@mail.house.gov and Kristin.richmond@mail.house.gov. This subcommittee is now deciding which direction to take in regards to the wild horses and burros. It has been hearing too exclusively from traditional wild horse and burro enemies.

Those of us who value and appreciate the wild horses and burros and their rightful place in the world of nature must set the record straight for these wonderful and ancient presences on Earth. We must not allow their enemies or those ignorant of their worthiness prevail!

The spirited and intelligent horses and burros are depending on you and I!

In addition to contacting the above, be sure to contact the President of the United States and the White House staff at (202) 456-1111 (TTY/TTD: (202) 456-6213). Switchboard (202) 456-1414. You can also do this by email at http://www.whitehourse.gov/contact or president@whitehouse.gov.

You may contact your Senators and Congressmen/State Representatives (federal and state) by linking on internet with “Elected Officials / USA Gov”. This will provide you with the contacts you require for federal, state, and local offices. The link is: https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials.

And in closing I urge you to contact the natural resource and public lands committee and subcommittee in the U.S. Senate.

On behalf of our wonderful wild horses and burros, I sincerely thank all of you for your caring and for your effective action.

Craig Downer

 

Wildlife Ecologist. A.B. UCB; M.S. UNR; Ph.D. Cand. U. Durham UK. Link to his article The Horse and Burro as Positively Contributed Returned Natives in North America is http://www.sciencepublishinggroup.com/journal/paperinfo.aspx?journalid=118&doi=10.11648/j.ajls.20140201.12 Website to check out is www.thewildhorseconspiracy.org in which the links to the article and how to order his book are present.

Also please consider signing this important petition to stop this massacre of the wild horses and burros from happening: The link to this petition is: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/907/592/301/demand-nokill-45000-wild-horses-burros-in-holding/

Response to Ben Masters’ justification of drastic measures toward America’s last wild horses and burros

PM Craig Downer by Rona Aguilar

CRAIG DOWNER·SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2016

I have just read Ben Masters’ justification for the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board’s recommendation to either adopt out, place, sell to killer buyers, or have BLM itself kill the 44,000 wild horses being held at public expense. His justification rests on the premise that the wild horses are destroying the habitats, not only in the Antelope Valley HMA’s eastern side around the Dolly Varden spring, but in many other similar areas throughout the West. I was also on this field trip and heard what the BLM officials had to say. It should be noted that on the west side there were much better habitat conditions and there were bands of wild horses here as well, though not as many. I also attended the Thursday meeting of the board and heard BLM’s presentations by Alan Shepherd, Nevada BLM wild horse and burro lead, and also by John Ruhs, Nevada BLM State Director, among others. I heard all the testimonies given, and was able to give testimony myself.

I think a lot is being overlooked and that there is a rushing to judgment concerning the wild horses and their effect on the ecosystem. Especially being overlooked is how the wild horses often find themselves being set up, placed into difficult situations, not allowed to adequately spread out. Much of this is due to not securing adequate water for them and to fencing. I am particularly concerned about the over-pumping of subterranean aquifers by ranchers and mining companies that lowers the water tables and causes many of the areas where wildlife still have a place to survive to be parched and declining ecologically speaking. This was particularly noticable in many parched mountain ranges above ranchers and also around large open-pit mining operations, where water tables have subsided at an alarming rate.

I have seen and photographed the graphic evidence of this during flights I have realized thanks to LightHawk pilots. One of the areas I overflew was eastern Nevada including in the Ely BLM district and also portions of the southern Elko BLM district where the Antelope Valley hma is located. I have been in this area several times before, hiked around,and spend considerable time there during two recent summers doing field investigation concerning the ecosystem, its condition, and the wild horses and other animals, including livestock and deer, sage grouse etc. What I noted was that the ranchers and miners are being given priority consideration and access to the most productive and intact portions of the Antelope Valley Complex as well as to the Triple B Complex of wild horse herd management areas just to the south in the Ely BLM District (White Pine County), and that the wild horses are being relegated to what’s left. This runs contrary to the provision of the Wild Horse and Burro Act that states that the legal 1971 lands where the wild horses and burros lived in 1971 be “devoted principally” (Section 2 c) though not exclusively to the welfare and benefit of the wild horses. What I see as happening is that the other interests are being given priority treatment and the wild horses left to defend for themselves. This is why they find themselves on the least productive lands.

And though Alan Shepherd repeatedly stated that no livestock had grazed the declining land around the Dolly Varden Spring for ca. 7 years, sorely lacking was a revelation of the historical use by livestock in past years. An area that has been severely impacted by decades of livestock grazing can take centuries to recover, and I have reason to believe that the area around the Dolly Varden spring is just such an area. During all these 45 years since the Wild Horse and Burro program has been in effect, there has been ample opportunity for our BLM and USFS to secure much more adequate and well-spaced watering and foraging areas that would have obviated the present crisis we witnessed around Dolly Varden.

I also noted how all of the wild horses both on the east and the west sides of Antelope Valley HMA as well as its south side coming along Hwy 93 were very flighty and took off immediately when our cars stopped to view them. On the northwest side of the Antelope Valley HMA at the end of the day (near Deer Spring), I stayed longer and tried to get closer to a few bands far off to the south. Though I drove a few miles, these bands and particularly their lead stallions would never let me get within a mile of them. From a lifetime of experience as an observer of the wild horses mainly in my home state of Nevada, I know this to be a sure sign that the wild horses are being persecuted, particularly shot at with long-range rifles. So now perhaps we know the reason why the wild horses from the east side are not coming over to the west side of the hma where the grass is lusher! The horses on the west side were considerably more frightened than those on the east side, though these too were quite afraid of people and their cars, clearly alarmed when our tour caravan came into view.

During my brief presentation I indicated how it is the human population and its impacts upon natural ecosystems both here in Nevada, in the U.S.A. and around the world, that are presently reaching crisis levels. How convenient it is then to shift the focus of attention upon such a noble and highly evolved animal as the horse, returning to living in its natural state, and to claim that it is the one who is overpopulating, all the while ignoring all of its many positive contributions to the ecosystem. I have written a book on this subject and in chapter II, I point out how the post gastric, caecal digestive system of the horses and burros provides a much needed balance to the monopolization of our public lands by ruminant digesting grazers such as cattle, sheep and deer. The horses and burros contribute much more humus to build the soils and many more intact seeds capable of germinating than do the ruminant grazers that much more thoroughly digest and break down what they eat. I go on to elaborate on this and to explain many of the positive benefits that accrue from this basic biological observation in my book. It is available through Amazon and is entitled The Wild Horse Conspiracy. You can read it as an ebook and considerable portions of it in the preview. www.amazon.com/dp/1461068983

I would also like for you to note that although Ben Masters alludes to similar extremely degraded conditions being caused by the wild horses throughout the West, again each area has its own special history, and the vying of special interests especially livestock ranchers, mining companies, oil and gas companies, Off Road Vehicle operators, and Hunters for the available resources often works very much against the wild horse and burro interests. In other words, they end up getting the short end of the stick, being placed on the bottom of the totem pole by profit-oriented individuals and corporations as well as the government officials who largely serve the latter rather than the General Public’s major interest in this Quality of Life issue. I have found this to be almost invariably the case in visiting and investigating many of the wild horse and burro herd areas/herd management areas on BLM lands and wild horse and burro territories on USFS lands in several states, as I discuss in some detail in my book.

I would also like to address Masters’ advocating for the intensive and widespread use of PZP to inhibit the reproduction of mares. The effects of PZP upon individual wild horses and their social units, be these bands or herds, have been studied by professional behavioral zoologists, such as Dr. Cassandra Nunez, and there are some serious detrimental effects that have been noted. These have been the subject of peer reviewed articles and used in court cases that have recognized their serious effects on the wild horses. In short, we should not overly compromise the future well-being of the wild horses in the wild, take away their natural vitality, in order to obtain a “quick drug fix” instead of doing right and providing adequate resources, space, habitat, etc. for long-term viable and thriving wild horses able to realize their ecological niche in their legal areas. We must not replace natural selection by artificial selection by people, as this will only thwart the natural, ecological adaptation of the horses and burros to each particular ecosystem. Remember that Section 3 a of the Act clearly states that the wild horses and burros must be allowed and managed “to achieve and maintain a “thriving natural ecological balance on the public lands” and “at the minimum feasible level” of management, or interference. The Act’s preamble also clearly states that they are to be considered “as an integral part of the natural system of public lands”. To me this clearly signifies being allowed to naturally adapt to the ecosystem where they have their legal rights. Why is this being denied them in spite of the law?!

As a Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, I have presented a Reserve Design proposal to the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board as well s to the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program itself. I had done so repeatedly and outlined a way forth that does not involve all these cruel and unnatural manipulations and restrictions upon the wild ones. I have presented this proposal as a way to achieve long-term genetically viable, ecologically well-adapted, and naturally self-stabilizing populations that would live in harmony with and contribute positively to all the other plants and animals in the legal herd management areas and territories. These wild horse/burro-containing ecosystems would be enhanced ecosystems, not degraded ones, if we people would only give them adequate habitat. Key to the success of Reserve Design is the provision of viably sized habitat of good enough quality for the horse/burro populations to realize the above. Such provision is what has been so sorely lacking in the past, and this is what must change today. Please check out my Reserve Design proposal at www.gofundme.com/mstngreservedesign and let me know what you think. I believe it is in the true spirit of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act and that we Americans both can and should restore the true and noble intent of this unanimously passed act. It is one that has to do with the Quality of Life we all experience and is a General Public issue.

I appreciate your listening to what I have to say. The horses are depending upon us. What is happening in Antelope Valley, the West, North America, or on Planet Earth today is not their fault. They are restorers of North American wildlife and ecosystems in many places, and they are of ancient and long-standing ancestry here. They are awesome presences and quickly revert to living in harmony with nature, reviving their age-old instincts. We should give them adequate areas where they can be themselves and prove their healing work in our world.

Submitted by Craig C. Downer, Wildlife Ecologist. A.B. UCB; M.S. UNR; Ph.D. Cand. U. Durham UK. Link to his article The Horse and Burro as Positively Contributed Returned Natives in North America is http://www.sciencepublishinggroup.com/journal/paperinfo.aspx?journalid=118&doi=10.11648/j.ajls.20140201.12 or just Google it by title and author. Website to check out is www.thewildhorseconspiracy.org in which the links to the article and how to order his book are present.

Listen to Craig Downer starting at 55 min mark on Big Blend Radio: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/big-blend-radio/2016/09/12/nature-connection-pipelines-and-wild-horses

Also please consider signing this important petition to stop this massacre of the wild horses and burros from happening: The link to this petition is: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/907/592/301/demand-nokill-45000-wild-horses-burros-in-holding/

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Protect Mustangs is a 501c3 nonprofit organization who protects and preserves native and wild horses.




Wild horses rescued from slaughterhouse are stalked, harassed by pro-slaughter & pro-sterilization advocates

Retaliation scheme against Protect Mustangs for speaking out against sterilization and slaughter

The pro-slaughter, pro-experiment on pregnant mares, pro-sterilization, pro-pzp advocates are posing as horse advocates in the “Sinister Solutions” group on Facebook. They broadcast the BLM agenda on their Facebook page sprinkled with BLM employees. It’s like an endless biased talk show. They bash and lie about real advocates championing the rights of America’s wild horses and Facebook lets them do it.

Several members of Sinister Solutions started a new group to lead the smear against us, the WY14™ and Protect Mustangs™. They are spreading lies, bashing, bullying and harassing us. They want to hurt the March pasture board fundraiser for the Wyoming 14™ (WY14™) https://www.gofundme.com/MustangPasture3-16 and they want to hurt the wild horses.

The sinister group launched a Facebook page to find the WY14™ in their private location so they would lose their safety. Now their location has been disclosed to many pro-slaughter people. What is the real motive of the group run by BLM supporters?

Several haters and jealous people also joined the Facebook group to be part of the hate-fest. Their goal is to hurt donations for the WY14™ so the orphans of slaughter can’t pay their pasture board for March. They are trying to put them at-risk.

These online bullies are not only hoping for neglect but they are interfering in our program and work. It seems they are also threatening to cause harm. The pro-slaughter, pro-sterilization advocates are plotting to “swoop in to take them”. . . But we aren’t going to let that happen.

We have contacted the authorities. Protect Mustangs has enlisted an armed security guard for an additional $1000. per month after receiving screenshots of the stalkers plotting in the Facebook group. The WY14™ board is $2,500. Security is now $1000. and then GoFundMe/WP takes 10% combined for processing. That makes the total $3,850. per month until we can move them to a new location. I pray that’s very soon so the WY14™ can know peace again. Please donate here: https://www.gofundme.com/MustangPasture3-16

If you are hearing lies about missing horses or anything else, please call me and ask any questions. My number is 415-531-8454. You can also email us at Contact@ProtectMustangs.org All the members of the herd known as the WY14™ (14 + 2 foals) are fine and well cared for on a daily basis. Craig Downer, wildlife ecologist, will attest to that. You can read his report here.

You will remember that I spoke about the one mustang who escaped during loading from the layover sanctuary last August. His name is White Socks and he was invited to stay at Dreamcatcher for the winter. The haters and pro-slaughter people have been spreading lies to create hysteria that he was missing when we had already told supporters he was there. They even went as far as to violate copyright laws to harass and bully us. This is vicious, illegal and there’s more to it.

The WY14™ are sad that their peaceful eco-pasture has been ruined by stalkers with telephoto cameras posting smears on Facebook, spewing jealously, hatred and bad energy. The WY14™ were starting to get better after all the trauma from the BLM roundup where everyone over the age of 2 was killed at slaughter for human consumption. Now they are being persecuted again. . .

Keep in mind all this is happening when a few members of the WY14™ are going to contribute foals. These fertility-haters are spying on the pregnant mares, making false claims to animal welfare agencies and then rushing off on Facebook to spread gloom and doom about their pregnancies, calling them “rank”, “inbred”, and “ugly”, etc. This is so  wrong.

Right now the WY14™ need your help to share and donate for their March pasture rent. Please help them here: https://www.gofundme.com/MustangPasture3-16 Please share often so others can help donate too. This makes a big difference.

Please keep the WY14™ in your prayers and PRAY we find the land for their permanent Eco-Sanctuary in California ASAP. This is an emergency now!

With love,
Anne

Anne Novak
Volunteer Executive Director
www.ProtectMustangs.org

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


Below Susan Humphrey shares her view on wild horses–calling them feral and pests. http://magicvalley.com/news/local/utah-wildlife-board-urges-blm-to-remove-some-wild-horses/article_9721b046-d207-11e3-964d-001a4bcf887a.htmlBelow Susan Humphrey is speaking about Anne Novak, Executive Director of Protect Mustangs in a public Facebook group.

 

Craig Downer visits the Wyoming 14

PM WY14 Craig Feb 24 2016

Yesterday, February 24, 2016, I visited the valley where Protect Mustangs keeps its Wyoming 14 wild horses and was able to see them. They are in good condition and they are in a healthy natural area with an abundance of springs and grass.

They are being well cared for on a daily basis and all had full winter coats. They were not frightened of me which indicated that the people they are associating with are treating them well. The bright sheen of their coats indicates that their health is good, as does the fullness of their muscles. Their hooves are in good trim.

Quality grass hay is available to them, though most of the wild horses were eating the grass that is beginning to spring up at the end of the winter season. There is no swamp in the valley bottom, but only areas of seepage from the springs. As the grass grows higher there will be even more ample forage for them, both in the valley and in the hillside.

PM WY14 © Craig Downer

This area has several hundreds of acres and the horses are not over their carrying capacity here. The acreage is shared with cattle off and on.

After spring arrives much of the horse droppings will be more rapidly decomposed and reincorporated into the soils, thus reinvigorating them and reseeding many valuable plants for the various herbivores there. A rest rotation will occur to allow the valley plants to grow up to a healthy level during the spring.

The hillsides are composed of granite outcroppings and there is much decomposed granite that keeps the horses hooves in fine condition. The horses move around to a large degree and go up into the hills, which keeps their muscles as well as hooves in good shape.

The fences I saw were not hazardous and there was some profuse willow clumps, canyons and hollows where the horses could seek shelter during storms.

These are very fortunate wild horses and I was very pleased to see how they had restored their health since their initial rescue from the killer buyers by Protect Mustangs. I am attaching some pictures I took. These give a much more complete picture of the situation concerning these fortunate rescued horses.

From my knowledge of wild horses, I consider these to be the Indian Pony type (some had appaloosa traits) and well worthy of preserving as a reproducing lineage that could restore wild horses where they belong in many areas where they have been thoughtlessly eliminated.

I am alarmed by the mean-spirited and biased attacks on Anne Novak and Protect Mustangs and their laudable rescue of the Wyoming 14 wild horses. I note that these detractors seem determined to put a negative spin on this whole rescue operation. They take a few isolated snapshots and then spin their interpretation of these negatively. This is not objective science, but political dirty work and is obviously being motivated by a desire to destroy Protect Mustangs–perhaps associated with its valiant defense of the wild horses in the wild and maintaining their integrity.

 

You can help keep the Wyoming 14 in their pasture by making a donation on this transparent crowd-funding site: https://www.gofundme.com/MustangPasture3-16 Thank you!

www.ProtectMustangs.org

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




Smear campaign launched to coerce voices against cruel experiments on pregnant mares

PM Val Set Me Free

“After coming out strongly against the Feds funding $11 million for cruel population control experiments on pregnant mares, we are under attack from those who push for experiments and population control. Members of BLM support groups on Facebook have intensified their slander, online-bullying and stalking to the point of trespassing and breaking the law to further their campaign of hate. These people want to manage America’s wild horses to extinction.” –Anne Novak, Executive Director of Protect Mustangs

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




Craig Downer endorses Anne Novak and Protect Mustangs

PM Craig Downer by Rona Aguilar

Testifying to integrity of Anne Novak and Protect Mustangs’ program for wild horses including rescued Wyoming 14

February 23, 2016

To Whom It May Concern:

I have known and worked with Anne Novak since 2009
and can testify to her integrity concerning the wild horses,
and to the integrity of her non-profit organization: Protect Mustangs.

She appreciates the great importance of maintaining the
natural vigor of wild horses in the wild. This includes keeping their lineages
reproductively intact. She has valiantly exposed the
hypocrisy of those who go along with partially or fully
sterilizing unique remnant populations of wild horses,
such as the group known as the Wyoming 14, which
she rescued from kill buyers. I have visited these horses
and consider them to be like the Indian ponies whose
numbers were extremely decimated in order to undermine
the original Native American culture and more nature-oriented
and nature-respecting way of life.

Ms. Novak’s organization Protect Mustangs
has courageously exposed the serious detriments of PZP administrations
on wild horse individuals and herds by citing and explaining scientific
investigations and publications that factually call these into question.
Also, she has currently exposed BLM’s plans to fund population control
experiments on pregnant mares and other wild horses, such as GonaCon™
and various methods of surgical sterilization. These are very much contrary
to the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act.
I have been involved with the Wyoming 14 project since it’s
inception and have earlier observed and photographed these wild
horses and advised Protect Mustangs on their condition and care.
I recommend that they be genetically tested in order to document their
unique heritage and to support their future protection.
I hope that they and their descendants can be reintroduced
into the wild in or near the area from which they were so thoughtlessly
removed. This would help restore the great
herds in this ecosystem where they possess generations
of natural adaptation. As an ecologist, generations of natural adaptation
is something I very much value and defend.

Finally, I would like to add that I have worked positively
with Anne Novak and her organization Protect Mustangs
and continue to do so at present. Contrary to rumors, there
is no “falling out” between us and I look forward to working
with Protect Mustangs to restore true integrity to our great
nation’s wild horse and burro program. This signifies restoring
the legal herds in their legal herd areas (BLM) and territories
(US Forest Service) as reproductively intact populations
at truly long-term viable levels and with minimal interference,
as accords with the basic mandate of the law. To this end and
as a professional wildlife ecologist, I am proposing a Reserve
Design approach that will also result in naturally self-stabilizing
population in the wild, free from gruesome chemical or surgical tampering.
This will truly obey the core mandate of the Wild Free-
Roaming Horses and Burros Act (contact me for more information).
I know that Anne Novak and her organization Protect Mustangs share
this wonderful and caring vision for the wild horses and burros with me.

Sincerely,

Craig C. Downer

Wildlife Ecologist
President: Andean Tapir Fund/Wild Horse and Burro Fund
P.O. Box 456
Minden, NV 89423

PM Ghost Dancer WY14 Rescue

 

 

Ghost Dancer Oct 2014

 

WY14 grazing for the first time since the slaughter-bound roundup

WY14 grazing for the first time since the slaughter-bound roundup

 

Pine Nut wild horses need your help to stay free

Pine Nut wild horses between Carson City and Dayton, NV on 2/13/15

 Only 332 Pine Nut wild horses left on more than 90,000 acres of public land set aside for their principal but not exclusive use and BLM still wants to decimate the herd.

Protect Mustangs went out on the Pine Nut range, near Carson City, last Friday after the judge’s ruling and found less wild horses than we hoped we would. This herd is probably the most famous herd in Nevada from the film The Misfits, starring Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe.

We are grateful to have found the Pine Nut wild horses living in peace and harmony on their native land. For now they escaped the cruel roundup, forced drugging, removals and tearing apart of families forever. Thanks to Friends of Animals’ & Protect Mustangs’ Pine Nut lawsuit–currently active in federal court–these wild horses won’t be shipped off to sordid holding pens without shade or shelter from the elements. Those over 10-years-old won’t be shipped to slaughter while we continue to fight in court for what’s right.

Protect the Pine Nut Herd T-Shirts are still available here https://www.booster.com/protectpinenutwildhorses so you can show your support and wear the message when you visit your Congressional Representative to update them on the wild horse crisis in the West

Wild horses must never be forced to live in zoo-like settings with humans running a PZP-based breeding program–abolishing the survival of the fittest. This would manage them to extinction.

There is a lot of misinformation and fear mongering going around about our Pine Nut lawsuit. Some Spin Dr.s are making false claims to confuse the public and their followers about the PZP issue within our lawsuit.

Here are the facts: PZP doesn’t stop roundups. The BLM would need to roundup the herd with helicopters to give them the EPA approved pesticide–made from slaughterhouse pig ovaries–known as PZP. Then they would use that as an excuse to rip 200 wild horses from their native land–never to return. Today the herd is underpopulated on the range. When nature’s balance is disrupted and there aren’t enough left to help eat the grass, then catastrophic wildfires will occur. The BLM’s chosen management number for the Pine Nut wild horses is outrageously low.

What the Spin Dr.s really don’t want you to know is that PZP sterilizes after multiple use. You might want to read the truth about the lawsuit, directly from the court and government documents below:

Here is Judge Hicks’ order granting the preliminary injunction: http://protectmustangs.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/PM-Pine-Nut-Order-Granting-Preliminary-Inj..pdf

This is the EPA Pesticide Fact Sheet wherein the registrant names wild horses as “PESTS”: http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_search/reg_actions/pending/fs_PC-176603_01-Jan-12.pdf

Here is Dr. Cassandra Nunez’s 40 page affidavit about PZP: http://protectmustangs.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/PM-Nunez_Decl-_Final.pdf

We are so grateful justice is unfolding in court but the wild ones need your help.

The Pine Nut wild horses are very, very happy they have been spared for now. It’s essential to get technical services for court evidence to keep them free and safe in the wild. If you would like to take direct action to help these wild horses continue to live in freedom, please make your tax-deductible donation today right here: http://www.gofundme.com/lqsy50 and please share this post widely. Thank you, because it takes a village.

In gratitude,
Anne

Anne Novak
Executive Director
www.ProtectMustangs.org

Links of interest™:

CBS Sunday Morning News: Pine Nut wild horses, 2013 (Available footage by Carl Mrozek) http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/nature-wild-horses/

Associated Press: US judge temporarily blocks wild horse roundup in Nevada over contraception controversy: http://www.havasunews.com/nation/us-judge-temporarily-blocks-wild-horse-roundup-in-nevada-over/article_2a0b7c5e-b360-11e4-a62d-bbc93d2384d8.html

Scene from The Misfits: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvGF0YhPSZg

Court order granting preliminary injunction: http://protectmustangs.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/PM-Pine-Nut-Order-Granting-Preliminary-Inj..pdf

US judge “troubled” by mustang roundup planned in Nevada (Associated Press) went viral: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/02/09/3636398_us-judge-troubled-by-latest-mustang.html?rh=1

Lawsuit targets Nevada wild horse roundup (USA TODAY) http://usat.ly/1yNrjLy

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

Dr. Cassandra Nunez’s 40 page affidavit on PZP: http://protectmustangs.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/PM-Nunez_Decl-_Final.pdf

Freinds of Animals: www.FriendsofAnimals.org

Latest suit to block Nevada mustang roundups targets drugs (Associated Press) went viral: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/02/01/3622737_latest-suit-to-block-nevada-mustang.html?rh=1

Wild-horse activists kicked out of federal meeting in Nevada, (Associated Press) went viral: http://bit.ly/1zHGrjY

Activists split on US agency”s plans to treat 250 mares with fertility-control drug in Nevada: (Associated Press) went viral: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/dec/28/activists-rip-blms-plans-to-remove-750-more-mustan/

Forum on PZP: http://on.fb.me/1DfKqSJ

Protect Mustangs www.ProtectMustangs.org, Contact@ProtectMustangs.org, 415-531-8454

BREAKING NEWS: Judge temporarily blocks the roundup and forced drugging of beloved herd from THE MISFITS starring Marilyn Monroe

PM MArilyn © Eve Arnold Magnum Photos

PM PIne Nut Horses

 

For immediate release:

Anne Novak, Executive Director, Protect Mustangs; 415.531.8454; anne@protectmustangs.org
Jenni Barnes, staff attorney, FoA’s Wildlife Law Program 720.949.7791; jenniferbarnes@friendsofanimals.org
Mike Harris, Director, Wildlife Law Program; 720.949.7791; michaelharris@friendsofanimals.org

BREAKING NEWS: Judge temporarily blocks the roundup and forced drugging of beloved Nevada herd known from THE MISFITS

Government cannot rely on a five-year-old environmental analysis that ignores allegations of pesticide dangers

RENO, NV (February 11, 2015)—U.S. District Judge Larry Hicks has granted Protect Mustangs and Friends of Animals a motion for a preliminary injunction to stop the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) roundup and permanent removal of 200 wild horses in the Pine Nut Herd Management Area (HMA) and the roundup of another 132 wild horses so that an estimated 66 mares can be given the drug PZP, an EPA approved pesticide, as a form of birth control. These wild horses belong to the most famous horse herd in NV–the one featured in The Misfits starring Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe–which helped pave the way for the Wild Horse & Burro Act of 1971. This herd now faces possible obliteration, despite the Act and advocates are fighting to stop a travesty with attorneys Michael Harris and Jennifer Barnes from Friends of Animals Wildlife Law program and attorney Jennifer Spencer from Cavanaugh-Bill Law Offices in Elko, Nevada

“Today is a milestone for America’s wild horses who have been scapegoated for range damage and forcibly drugged with PZP in experiments for decades,” states Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs based in San Francisco. “They should never live in zoo-like settings on public land. That’s not freedom. Wild horses are a native species who contribute to the ecosystem. They belong here.”

Hicks said that with the proposed Pine Nut roundup, which was slated to begin Feb. 20, 2015, the BLM has failed to satisfy the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) and other federal laws that are applicable.

“Accordingly, the court finds that the public interest will be best served by enjoining the BLM’s proposed gather, at least until the court has an opportunity to fully consider the merits of plaintiffs’ claims,” Hicks said.

“We are delighted that the Court agreed with Friends of Animals and Protect Mustangs that BLM is obligated to fully evaluate under NEPA each and every proposed round-up,” said Michael Harris, director of Friends of Animals’ (FoA’s) Wildlife Law Program. “In relying upon a stale Environmental Assessment from 2010, BLM has not met its duty to fully inform the public about the impacts associated with its plan to permanently remove more than 200 wild horses from the Pine Nut Range, and to dose dozens of mares with the fertility drug PZP. It is time for BLM to evaluate the harsh reality that PZP has long-term detrimental effects on wild horses.”

“I would say this is a major victory for wild horses and reflects rising concerns about rounding up and drugging wild horses with PZP,” added Jennifer Barnes, staff attorney with FoA’s Wildlife Law Program.

“I’m grateful that the wild herd I’ve been studying for 50 years has received justice in federal court today.” Craig Downer, director of ecology and conservation at Protect Mustangs. “This is an opportunity to prove our case to restore the herds.”

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

# # #

 Links of interest™:

February 11th Court order granting preliminary injunction: PM Pine Nut Order Granting Preliminary Inj.

US judge temporarily blocks wild horse roundup in Nevada (Associated Press) http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/02/11/3640649_us-judge-temporarily-blocks-wild.html?rh=1

US judge “troubled” by mustang roundup planned in Nevada (Associated Press) went viral: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/02/09/3636398_us-judge-troubled-by-latest-mustang.html?rh=1

Lawsuit targets Nevada wild horse roundup (USA TODAY) http://usat.ly/1yNrjLy

Latest suit to block Nevada mustang roundups targets drugs (Associated Press) went viral: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/02/01/3622737_latest-suit-to-block-nevada-mustang.html?rh=1

Jan. 26th Press release: Protect Mustangs & Friends of Animals file lawsuit to stop Pine Nut Mountains roundup: http://protectmustangs.org/?p=7806

Wild-horse activists kicked out of federal meeting in Nevada, (Associated Press) went viral: http://bit.ly/1zHGrjY

Activists split on US agency”s plans to treat 250 mares with fertility-control drug in Nevada: (Associated Press) went viral:  http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/dec/28/activists-rip-blms-plans-to-remove-750-more-mustan/

Forum on PZP: http://on.fb.me/1DfKqSJ

EPA Pesticide fact Sheet for PZP: http://1.usa.gov/1zKMiWy

Protect Mustangs on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ProtectMustangs

ProtectMustangs on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ProtectMustangs

Anne Novak on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheAnneNovak

A brief history of wild horses in the news: http://bit.ly/1LsjGEz