March For Mustangs

February 27, 2010

(From The Cloud Foundation)

When: Thursday, March 25th, 2010

Time: 1:00-3:00 PM – Press conference and speakers at 1:30 PM (Filmmaker/Advocate Ginger Kathrens, Author R.T. Fitch and many more- including special guests to be announced)

Where: Lafayette Park (northside of White House, on H Street between 15th and 17th Streets, NW). At 3:00 PM. Protesters will march with signs to the BLM office at 1849 ‘C’ Street.

Plus Mustangs on the Hill II: On Friday morning we’ll meet and brief people on meeting with their Representatives in meetings to save the mustangs. Please schedule an appointment with your Representatives for Thursday morning or Friday.

Why: BLM’s cruel and poor mismanagement is destroying a vital piece of the American west. The American public is standing up for our horses and burros- please join us in a March for Mustangs rally and protest.

Roundups increased significantly in 2000 in the Bush years and they haven’t let up under the Obama administration. 12,000 wild horses and burros are scheduled for removal from our public lands this fiscal year alone. These helicopter roundups come at enormous expense to our wild herds and to the American taxpayer.

Recently, the roundup of 1900 mustangs took place in the Calico mountains of Northwestern Nevada during the dead of winter, ending early in February when BLM realized the herds were far smaller than estimated. To date, 60 horses have died due to this roundup and the death toll continues to climb daily. This does not include the 30 plus mares that have aborted their late-term foals in the feedlot style corrals in Fallon, Nevada where the horses are being held. Two foals had their hooves literally separate from the bone after the helicopters ran their families for miles over rocky and sharp volcanic ground.

Secretary Ken Salazar, who oversees the BLM, has decided there is no room left for our mustangs on their designated lands in the west. The Secretary and has proposed purchasing private land in the East for our Western wild horses. This only adds to the financial and humane train wreck that the Wild Horse and Burro Program has become.

So rather than spending over thirty million dollars this fiscal year to remove our wild horses and burros from the range, let’s protect them on their western lands. The intent of Congress’ 1971 Free-roaming Wild Horses and Burros Act was not to warehouse horses, but allowed them to live in freedom in self-sustaining numbers on western rangelands designated primarily for their survival. Drastic change is needed in the management of wild horses and burros if they are to survive, as wild animals, into the future. Wild horses benefit the land as they evolved in North America and they represent our living history in the west.

Annually we lose $123 million running a taxpayer subsidized grazing program is often referred to as “welfare ranching” due to the small fees charged to livestock permittees. The rate is currently the lowest allowed by law—$1.35 per cow/calf pair per month. This rate needs to be raised to over $9.00 in order for the program to break even. If cows were removed and horses allowed to stay, we’d save even more—including our valued mustangs. Holding the 1900 Calico horses alone in a feedlot style facility amounts to a staggering cost of over $10,000 per day!

But change is on the way for our wild horses and burros! Some 25 protests have been mounted from coast-to-coast including Chicago, LA, NYC, Denver, Las Vegas, Reno, and Sacramento since late December. Thousands of people have braved the cold and come out with their families to hold banners and signs demanding that President Obama react to the hideous mistreatment of our spectacular wild horses and respond to the incredible waste of taxpayer dollars on a broken program that only lines the pockets of powerbrokers and cattle barons. Now is the time to say enough is enough. Open the gates and return our wild horses to their rightful ranges.

Please take action for our wild herds. An immediate moratorium on all roundups is needed! This must be followed by hearings and investigations on BLM mismanagement; accurate and independent assessments of just how many wild horses we have left and the real range conditions. Then we need to develop a sustainable plan for our wild herds on our Western public lands and restore their protections set forth in the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act. Moving our wild horses in non-reproducing, broken families to the East is not the answer.

Join us on Thursday, March 25th for a Mustang March on Washington and take action today to save these incredible animals who are currently being managed to extinction.

Call President Obama 202-456-1111

Call your Senators 202-224-3121

For more information, go to The Cloud Foundation: http://www.thecloudfoundation.org

You can follow the Calico horses through the Humane Observer, Elyse Gardner’s Blog: http://humaneobserver.blogspot.com

Stay current with Wild Horse News: http://www.nickolesphotography.com/HTML/wildhorseinformation.htm

There are many other informative sites listed under my Links heading on the right.

Adobe Town HMA stallion (Wyoming)

5 Responses to “March For Mustangs”

  1. Janet Carabello Says:

    I am working on getting there…….

  2. nancy roberts Says:

    Really well written Pam, thanks for being such a strong voice!

  3. Lyn McCormick Says:

    Incredible horse! Am hoping to go back to DC. I wish we could get 3,000 people to show up!

  4. pnickoles Says:

    Janet and Lyn – I hope you make it and I wish I could go with you!

    Nancy – this came from The Cloud Foundation. I’m just reposting to help get the word out about this very important event. 🙂

  5. Kelly Militello Says:

    I will be traveling to Utah with a number of volunteers from a mustang rescue organization in western NY for some mustang training at the Festival of Learning in May. Does anyone know if there is anything we can do out there to help the mustangs..or a contact person who is an advocate for the horses and burros we could talk to? Thanks.


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