for immediate release
BREAKING NEWS: Call for Wyoming boycott and protests against roundups to frack the land for oil and gas
Native wild horses are facing destruction in the face of climate change with no evidence of overpopulation to justify BLM roundups
Rock Springs, WY. (September 21, 2014)–-The public is outraged more indigenous wild horses are being rounded up and permanently removed from public land for the water and fracking land grab. Protect Mustangs is calling for protests to stand up for American wild horses and for a tourism boycott targeted at Wyoming who promotes “Roam Free” in their marketing yet ignores wild horses in their state. More than 800 Divide Basin, Adobe Town and Salt Wells wild horses are being rounded up from the public-private land known as the “Checkerboard” in southwest Wyoming. The Rock Springs Grazing Association (RSGA) took the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to court to push the roundup through. Wild horses are terrified by choppers, their families ripped apart, forced into inhumane captivity, be at-risk for going to slaughter and forever lose their freedom to roam and contribute to the ecosystem. Several wild horses have already died brutal deaths in the roundup–some victims were only a few months old.
“Fracking for oil and gas is polluting the environment and wiping out America’s wild horses,” states Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs. “The BLM must leave at least 150 wild horses in each herd to maintain genetic variability so they can adapt to the effects of climate change. It’s time for clean energy that can coexist with wildlife.”
BLM describes one large fracking project, Continental Divide-Creston, in saying, “The project is located on 1.1 million acres in the checkerboard pattern of mixed land ownership comprised of 59 percent federal, 37 percent private and 4 percent state-owned land. The eastern boundary of the project is approximately 25 miles west of Rawlins, Wyo. with the western boundary approximately 50 miles east of the city of Rock Springs.”
Field reports allege the BLM has inflated the population guesstimates to justify removals requested by the RSGA.
There is no evidence of overpopulation according to the National Academy of Sciences’ 2013 report.
On the other hand, internationally acclaimed wildlife biologist Craig Downer points out “much evidence exists for horse presence in the Americas, especially North America, during the post- Pleistocene and pre-Columbian period at dates scattered through the period beginning ca. 10,000 YBP and reaching very near to 1492 A.D. [Craig C. Downer, The Horse and Burro as Positively Contributing Returned Natives in North America, American Journal of Life Sciences. Vol. 2, No. 1, 2014, pp. 5-23. doi: 10.11648/j.ajls.20140201.12]
“Native wild horses are a vanishing natural resource,” states Novak. “People need to stand up for what’s right. Innocent foals are dying in this roundup and that’s wrong.”
Protect Mustangs is calling for an immediate moratorium on roundups and removals for scientific population studies and holistic management. Advocates want to see genetically viable herds on public land but the BLM prefers to cater to the extractive industry who wants number so low wild horses will die off.
“Tourists come to Wyoming to observe wild horse families in their native habitat, so why are they going to decimate these herds?” asks Novak. “The tag line at the Wyoming tourism office is ‘Roam Free‘ but they are taking away native wild horses’ freedom forever. The public is angry and wants to boycott Wyoming tourism.”
The Great Divide Basin, Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek herd management areas (HMAs) total approximately 2,427,220 acres with approximately 1,2427,220 acres in the Checkerboard. The roundup held up in court recently due to the Rock Springs Grazing Association (RSGA) Consent Decree ordered by the U.S. District Court on April 3, 2013, to remove all wild horses from private lands within the checkerboard portion of the complex in 2013. The RSGA appears to be heavily involved with energy development.
Members of the public are encouraged to watch GASLAND 2, contact their elected officials, peacefully protest the roundup and join America’s growing anti-fracking movement to stop the devastation of native wild horse habitat.
Protect Mustangs is a grassroots conservation nonprofit 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.
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Anne Novak, 415-531-8454, Anne@ProtectMustangs.org
Tami Hottes, 618-790-4339, Tami@ProtectMustangs.org
Photos, interviews and video available upon request
Links of interest™:
American Journal of Life Sciences: The Horse and Burro as Positively Contributing Returned Natives in North America http://bit.ly/1rV9tpr
Wild Free Roaming Horse & Burro Act http://1.usa.gov/1utVtmL
More foals die in Wyoming’s Checkerboard roundup: http://bit.ly/1wEU6Ua
GASLAND 2: http://www.gaslandthemovie.com/
BLM Oil & Gas leases: http://on.doi.gov/1sS8l3Z
National Academy of Sciences report on Wild Horses and Burros: http://bit.ly/1sT6agA
Protect Mustangs Calls for Fund for Wyoming Wild Horses (Horseback Magazine) http://bit.ly/1ylmS0s
Continental Divide-Creston: http://on.doi.gov/1uc04gX
Continental Divide-Creston expansion http://bit.ly/1pnSNmt
Defund the Roundups Petition: http://chn.ge/1sAAQHa
Petition for a 10 year moratorium on roundups for recovery and studies: http://chn.ge/1rdhXZ2
Don’t Frack Wild Horse Land Petition: http://chn.ge/1rdDzEV
Petition for shade and shelter for captive wild horses & burros: http://chn.ge/1DriOvN
PZP (birth control) sterilizes temp to perm and is a pesticide: http://bit.ly/1mzsP4Z
Link to BLM Wyoming Wild Horse and Burro Program: http://www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/programs/Wild_Horses.html
Wyoming Tourism Office: http://www.wyomingtourism.org
Roundup footage & abuse: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yF49csCB9qM
Protect Mustangs is a national nonprofit organization who protects and preserves native and wild horses.
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