Dry Creek Partnership Successes Continue with Treatment of Noxious Weeds


A partnership that began in 2012 among the Bureau of Land Management Cody Field Office, Marathon Oil Corporation and Friends of a Legacy (FOAL) continues to achieve successes toward its goal of improving water sources for the benefit of wild horses, wildlife and livestock inside the McCullough Peaks Wild Horse Herd Management Area (HMA) east of Cody, Wyoming.

Saltcedar is removed along Dry Creek.
Russian olive and
saltcedar were recently treated on 900 acres of public land along Dry
Creek east of Cody.

Most recently, the group partnered with Park County and Big Horn County weed and pest districts to treat Russian olive and saltcedar on 900 acres of public land along Dry Creek. The invasive plants were sprayed with herbicide, beginning at the bridge where U.S. Highway 14/16/20 crosses Dry Creek approximately 21 miles east of Cody, and continuing downstream to the east.Russian olive and saltcedar, both designated as noxious weeds by the Wyoming Weed and Pest Council, create numerous negative impacts on river function, native plant and wildlife species, wildlife habitat, and water quality and quantity. By removing these water-loving plants, wild horses, wildlife and livestock will benefit from more water in the creek and the space created for native vegetation to flourish.

“We are so appreciative of FOAL and Marathon Oil for the progress we continue to make along the Dry Creek drainage,” said BLM Assistant Field Manager Delissa Minnick. “And the recent Russian olive and saltcedar treatments would not have been possible without the additional contributions of herbicides and work crews from Park County and Big Horn County weed and pest districts.”

Treatments are expected to continue this spring, and re-treatments to spray re-growths will be needed in future years. In addition, tall, mature tamarisk in the area will be mulched using a skidsteer with a masticator attachment.

“FOAL is dedicated to and honored to be a partner in reducing the impact of invasive species in the HMA for the benefit of all of the flora and fauna that depend on the Dry Creek drainage,” said Warren Murphy, president of FOAL.

Projects completed by the Dry Creek Water Augmentation partners over the past few years include the identification of viable water supply alternatives; installation and testing of two shallow water supply wells along Dry Creek; purchase and installation of solar powered pumps; construction of a 2.5-mile long water delivery system; and the improvement of several reservoirs in the HMA, which are critical for capturing spring snow melt.

Future plans include the construction of a second pipeline and installation of various points of use for the delivered water including guzzlers, reservoirs, watering basins and wetlands along the pipelines for water storage and distribution to wildlife.

Marathon Oil has operated in this area since 1917 and has partnered with the BLM on numerous resource improvement projects. To ensure the success of the Dry Creek Water Augmentation Project, Marathon Oil has secured grants and provided funding to the National Wild Turkey Federation to implement fieldwork and construction projects.

“We’re grateful for the partnerships we have with these groups,” said Environmental Professional Mike Williams with Marathon Oil’s Wyoming Asset Team. “Such successful water augmentation in the Dry Creek drainage wouldn’t have been possible without the significant collaborative input and commitment that each organization brings to the project.”

FOAL is a non-profit wild horse advocacy organization that has been partnering with the BLM under a separate MOU since 2006 to coordinate and cooperate on opportunities for public education, to enhance habitat for all creatures living within the McCullough Peaks HMA and to assist the BLM in managing the McCullough Peaks wild horses.

FOAL has received grants from the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust and the Park County Winter Recreation Coalition Fund (held by the Wyoming Community Foundation) that have contributed to the success of the Dry Creekheld by the Wyoming Community Foundation Water Augmentation Project.

“On-going collaboration focused on improving the habitat and the availability of water resources is very important,” said FOAL Executive Director Marion Morrison. “We’re seeing great results due to the significant contributions of expertise, resources, and passion from every member of this partnership.”

It is hoped the partnership will continue to grow with the addition of new participants and public involvement. The partners hope to enlist volunteers in the future to plant native species along Dry Creek to further improve habitat. For more information, or to participate in Dry Creek habitat enhancement work, please contact BLM Wild Horse Specialist Tricia Hatle at 307-578-5900.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2014, the BLM generated $5.2 billion in receipts from public lands.
–BLM–Cody Field Office   1002 Blackburn Street      Cody, WY 82414

Help feed young wild horses, rescued from the slaughterhouse ~ Winter is coming!

Dear friends of Wild Horses,

Please help the 14 Dry Creek wild orphans (WY14) ages 10 months to 2 years old who Mark Boone Junior and Anne Novak saved from the slaughterhouse. The Canadian slaughterhouse was holding them in their Montana feedlot before shipping the young wild horses by air to be slaughtered abroad and eaten as an expensive delicacy.

The WY14 were brutally chased by choppers into traps near Greybull, Wyoming. Terrified, their herd of 41 mustangs was quickly sold at auction. 4 foals were saved at the auction and are in the care of another group. All the other horses were purchased to be slaughtered. The Canadian slaughterhouse purchased the WY14 and took them to their feedlot but before slaughtering them but we negotiated them out of hell and to safety. Sadly before we got involved, 23 of their family members were slaughtered in Canada quickly after the auction–everyone age 3 and up. . .

You can help the traumatized WY14 with a tax-deductible hay donation. They eat so much that we need to gather funds again to buy a large quantity of hay to keep the price down. Hay is really expensive out West because of the drought. Prices are rising quickly and will skyrocket this winter. For this reason we must fill the barn with several truckloads now.

All direct tax-deductible donations made through www.PayPal.com or by mail means the money is going directly to feed and care for the horses. We are sponsored by the Andean Tapir Fund while our own 501c3 is in the works so your donations are tax-deductible.

This is the first time any wild horses have been rescued after being owned by and in possession of the actual slaughterhouse. Here is an article in Horseback Magazine about the rescue. Please help these youngster survivors so they can honor all the wild horses who have been slaughtered over the years.

Please share this fundraiser to raise the hay money. Together we can keep the WY14 fed and cared for while they heal from the trauma of the ruthless roundup that ended with their families being slaughtered. This winter is going to be very cold and they will need enough hay to keep warm so they don’t get skinny. Please help the today.

Our goal is to create an eco-sanctuary for the WY14 so you can come visit wild horses living in peace and harmony with nature. We are currently looking for suitable land for grazing to cut down the high cost of hay and make the eco-sanctuary sustainable. In the meantime we need to feed them good hay that is trucked in.

The WY14 need your help today. Please help with a donation and email this letter to your friends and family so the youngsters can get hay to eat.

Good hay helps them heal and grow strong. The 14 wild youngsters are so grateful for your caring support and help.

Many blessings,

Anne Novak
Executive Director



Dangerous bill puts America’s wild horses at risk of slaughter

©Cynthia Smalley


Dear Friends of Wild horses and burros,

It’s bad when the BLM holds captive mustangs with no shade or shelter but if we all don’t rally quickly to stop a misleading bill in Congress, we could witness America’s cherished wild horses being sold to slaughter by the thousands instead of being held captive in holding pens or living in freedom as the law intended–safe from harassment and slaughter.

You probably have witnessed what happens when the states “manage” wild horses. . . In the case of the 41 wild horses from Dry Creek, Wyoming, 37 were sold to the Canadian slaughterhouse. We are so grateful to have rescued 14 youngsters (8mo-2 yrs) who were all going to be butchered for human consumption abroad.

Below is an Associated Press article that is going viral this weekend while the National Association of Counties is meeting in New Orleans. The Utah Commissioners are trying to get a joint resolution backed which would put American wild horses at-risk of being killed and slaughtered to “dispose of them.” Of course the politicians don’t pitch it this way. No . . . they cover that part up and make their resolution and their legislation look like it has animal welfare in mind. You can see the bill below.

Let’s hope this article shines the light on their sinister plans. It’s time to fight for the protection of wild horses.

Bill seeks to allow states to manage wild horses
By Martin Griffith, Associated Press

RENO, Nev. (AP) — A Utah congressman has introduced legislation to allow Western states and American Indian tribes to take over management of wild horses and burros from the federal government.

Rep. Chris Stewart said the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has mismanaged the animals on public rangelands and states should have the option of managing them.

An overpopulation of horses is pushing cattle off the range, the Republican lawmaker said, and leading to the destruction of important habitat for native species.

“States and tribes already successfully manage large quantities of wildlife within their borders,” Stewart said in a statement. “If horses and burros were under that same jurisdiction, I’m confident that new ideas and opportunities would be developed to manage the herds more successfully than the federal government.”

But Anne Novak, executive director of California-based Protect Mustangs, said her group opposes the legislation because it would lead to states and tribes killing the animals or selling them off for slaughter for human consumption.

The government is rounding up too many mustangs while allowing livestock to feed at taxpayer expense on the same rangeland scientists say is being overgrazed, she said.

“We’ve had firsthand experience with states and tribes managing wild horses, and it’s horribly cruel,” Novak said in a statement. “They ruthlessly remove wild horses and sell them to kill-buyers at auction. Severe animal abuse would be the result of the (legislation).”

The Bureau of Land Management says it’s doing all it can, given budget constraints, overflowing holding pens and a distaste for the politically unpopular options of either ending the costly roundups or slaughtering excess horses.

The bill’s introduction comes at a time when the bureau has been under increasing pressure from ranchers to remove horses that they say threaten livestock and wildlife on rangelands already damaged by drought.

In Utah, Iron County commissioners had threatened to gather up hundreds of mustangs themselves, saying the government refuses to remove enough horses in herds that double in size every five years.

Iron County Commissioner Dave Miller said he and commissioners from Utah’s Beaver and Garfield counties are trying to drum up support for a resolution in support of the legislation at the National Association of Counties annual conference in New Orleans, which ends Monday.

“The resolution will be instrumental in getting Chris Stewart’s bill through Congress because it shows support across the nation,” he told The Spectrum of St. George, Utah.

Stewart said his Wild Horse Oversight Act would extend all protections that horses and burros enjoy under the federal Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 while giving states the opportunity of implementing their own management plans.

Under the bill, the states could form cooperative agreements to manage herds that cross over borders, and the federal government would continue to monitor horses and burros to ensure that population numbers as prescribed by the 1971 act are maintained.

The bureau estimates 40,600 of the animals — the vast majority horses — roam free on bureau-managed rangelands in 10 Western states. The population exceeds by nearly 14,000 the number the agency has determined can exist in balance with other public rangeland resources and uses.

Some 49,000 horses and burros removed from the range are being held in government-funded short- and long-term facilities.

# # #

Cross-posted from the San Francisco Chronicle for educational purposes: http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Bill-seeks-to-allow-states-to-manage-wild-horses-5617520.php

Please share this news with your friends and help with a donation to feed and care for the WY14 and the other wild horses in our Outreach Program here: http://protectmustangs.org/?page_id=701

Hear a commissioner spin his pitch while interviewed on a friendly radio station in Utah: https://soundcloud.com/ksvc/mark

Take action and contact your county commissioners and all your elected officials to request they do not support rogue commissioners in Utah and ask that they do not support the individual states managing wild horses because it would put them at risk of slaughter.

Now is the time to stand up and fight for the voiceless!  Together we can turn this around.

Many blessings,

Anne Novak
Executive Director

PM WH&B Oversight Act Web


PM WH&B Oversight Act 2



at Wynema Ranch