Category Archives: *Featured/Spotlights

Special features, spotlights, headlines

Veterans for Mustangs Act Proposes to Make Wild Horses into Carnival Shooting Gallery

American Wild Horse Campaign volunteer stalking and shooting wild horses with high powered gas operated rifle. Photo courtesy of American Wild Horse Campaign.

YREKA, CA, US, February 3, 2023 /EINPresswire.com/ — A recently introduced bill titled the ‘Veterans for Mustangs Act’ allegedly seeks to employ Veterans suffering from PTSD to shoot wild horses using high powered gas operated rifles firing a heavy projectile carrying a chemical sterilization agent commonly known as ‘PZP’.

An examination of the unvarnished data about what is being cavalierly proposed in this new bill shows many compelling serious contraindications for supporting this bill.

First off, there are no published psychological studies that prove any potential mental health benefits for combat veterans suffering from PTSD by chasing wild horses around the landscape and shooting them with these powerful rifles. And in many cases where combat veterans are suffering from PTSD, ownership or use of any firearms may be contraindicated, according to information from a National Academy of Science’s report: https://cdn.govexec.com/media/gbc/docs/pdfs_edit/071712bb1.pdf.

Moreover, according to a published National Institute of Health Study (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5308415/):

“Military veterans and individuals with Post traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are at increased risk for aggressive behavior and suicide, compared to civilians and those without PTSD. Further, compared to other psychiatric populations, veterans with PTSD have been found to possess more firearms and to more frequently engage in potentially dangerous firearm related behaviors. This is concerning as, compared to civilians, veterans are more likely to complete suicide with a firearm and access to firearms is associated with higher risk of suicide above and beyond the effect of psychiatric illness. Veterans with PTSD also demonstrate higher levels of anger, hostility, and aggression than those without PTSD, which may render firearm possession particularly problematic among this population.”

The key lobbyist behind this bill, Mr. Marty Irby, has a background that should be carefully considered in regard to his motivation in lobbying a bill that raises many questions and serious concerns, as can be read in this published article:

https://twhfacts.com/2019/08/03/the facts about marty irby executive director animal wellness action/

In fact, the experts who pioneered and helped develop and study using gas powered rifles to shoot large animals, including wild horses, with heavy chemical filled syringes, have themselves raised some of the serious concerns and published them:

“Even on a large animal struck correctly, the dart (contraceptive PZP darts) can cause hemorrhage and hematoma. Misplaced shots can break bones or even kill the animal.” (Thomas and Marburger 1964)

“Muzzle report [when a gun goes ‘bang’] can cause problems in darting either captive or free ranging animals. In captive situations, the noise can be more disturbing to animals than getting struck with a dart.”

“Disturbed animals are then more difficult to approach, or the entire group of animals may run away.” (Page 32, “Overview of Delivery Systems for the Administration of Contraceptive to Wildlife” by Terry J. Kreeger)

In fact, there is mounting scientific evidence that using PZP, also known as a ‘Genetic Poison’ by many wild horse experts and advocates, has many unintended consequences that are never mentioned by the promoters of PZP.

A leading researcher in the field of fertility control using PZP, Dr. Cassandra M. V. Nuñez, has written extensively about the ‘unintended consequences’ of using PZP, even when administered in a less draconian manner than using combat soldiers to shoot wild horses with rifles.

More about Nuñez’s research here: https://cmvnunez.weebly.com/.

Interestingly, the Bureau of Land Management, which has suffered from ongoing and widespread condemnation of their management of American wild horses, is offering millions in tax dollars as funding incentives (grants) to people and NGOs to employ the use of shooting wild horses with PZP to allegedly control populations of wild horses where they are deemed in conflict with humans and commercial enterprises.

More here: https://www.einnews.com/pr_news/607372689/costly wild horse management exposing the crutches of a failed paradigm killing american wild horses.

According to an article by Michael Ray Harris, a law professor and litigator at Vermont Law University and the Legal Advisor to the California based non-profit all-volunteer organization Wild Horse Fire Brigade:

“What is ignored by the pro-PZP community is that wild horses darted with PZP to inhibit their ability to naturally reproduce aren’t really, well, ‘wild’ anymore. Wild means ‘living in a state of nature’ as opposed to being ‘tamed or domesticated’ to be more useful to humans. Accordingly, opposition to PZP is based on an ethical belief that wild animals should be free of human manipulation.”

This press release can be viewed in full online at: https://www.einpresswire.com/article/614834024/.

Please visit www.wildhorsefirebrigade.org for more information.

Urge BLM to Preserve ALL Wild Horses in McCullough Peaks HMA

“Wild Pinto Family at the Waterhole” by Carol Walker, Living Images Photography.

The McCullough Peaks wild horses are a beloved herd. Given the herd’s proximity to Yellowstone National Park, they amaze and charm both locals and visitors from around the world.

Local volunteers have worked tirelessly for more than 12 years to implement a successful PZP program to manage the population growth of the herd. The program has been a complete success with just 2% population growth each year. Sadly, the BLM now wants to remove the majority of horses from the current population of just 179 horses to the Arbitrary Management Level (AML) of just 70-140 horses.

The Bureau of Land Management is proposing to remove over 100 horses and begin use of controversial fertility control such as GonaCon. BLM, of course, ignores the livestock grazing in the wild horse habitat and refuses to consider repatriating wild horses to the zeroed-out portion of the Herd Area.

Please take a minute to speak up for these magnificent horses.  Tell the BLM the following (in your own words):

  • I support the PZP program that has successfully managed the herd for the last 12 years.
  • I strongly oppose the removal of any wild horses now living in the HMA; these horses deserve to live and die wild and are valued by locals and tourists alike.
  • The successful partnership between volunteers and BLM to manage the McCullough Peaks Herd through darting has been a model for other HMAs.
  • BLM must amend planning documents to increase the Arbitrary Management Level to be in line with science. Nationally respected equine geneticist Dr. E. Gus Cothran has long stated that a breeding herd of 150-200 horses is the minimum herd size necessary to prevent inbreeding. Removing horses will jeopardize the long-term genetic health of the herd and will force related horses to inbreed.
  • Utilize BLM authority (43 C.F.R. 4710) to reduce or eliminate livestock grazing in order to accommodate the wild horses.
  • These horses must be managed to preserve natural behaviors using only safe and proven fertility control such as PZP. I oppose the BLM’s proposal to use other fertility controls such as GonaCon, IUDs, surgical sterilization, and other fertility control methods which are documented to destroy ovaries (or testes) and natural hormone production which is necessary for natural “wild” behaviors.
  • These horses are a great tourism draw. The public enjoys observing their natural wild behaviors, including seeing stallions protect their families, watching lead mares direct herd dynamics, and experiencing the entire repertoire of natural “wild” horse behaviors.

Your voice makes a difference.  Please submit your comments directly to the BLM by clicking here (and selecting the Participate Now option).

The Cloud Foundation
www.thecloudfoundation.org

Barbançon Claims Grand Prix Special Victory with New Personal Best Score in AGDF Week 3

Morgan Barbançon & Habana Libre A. Photo © SusanJStickle.com.

Week 3 of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) continued this weekend, with a victory for France’s Morgan Barbançon and her own Habana Libre A in the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI4*, presented by Palm Beach Equine Clinic.

Barbançon’s 74.404% performance aboard the Dutch Warmblood gelding by Zizi Top marked the pair’s highest Grand Prix Special score to date. At 11 years old, Habana Libre A was the youngest horse in the class. The pair finished more than three percentage points clear of second-placed Anna-Christina Abbelen (GER), who rode her own and Silke Abbelen-Mooren’s Sam Donnerhall to 71.234%. Spain’s Pablo Gómez Molina claimed third on the 13-year-old PRE gelding Ulises De Ymas with 69.915%.

“I’m super happy,” said the 30-year-old Barbançon, who is competing at AGDF for the first time. “I’m on cloud nine. Honestly, I thought we would get a 72% or maybe 73%, and I would have been super happy with that. Today, I had such a floaty, fluid ride, and I didn’t push.”

Tarjan Claims Ticket to Lövsta Future Challenge Final

The second qualifiers in the Lövsta Future Challenge Young Horse Grand Prix Series and the Future Challenge Young Horse Prix St. Georges Series sent two more combinations through to the Grand Final (which takes place in AGDF 11) from each class. These classes aim to identify and nurture talented, up-and-coming young FEI horses.

In the Lövsta Future Challenge FEI Intermediate II Qualifier, Alice Tarjan rode her own Summersby II (by Sezuan x Sandro Hit) to 70.833%. Ali Potasky rode Inxs into second place with 69.558%, claiming the second qualifying slot.

“It’s a great division,” enthused Tarjan, who rides as an amateur. “I’ve been here the last three years and it’s a super way to get the greener horses into the CDI stadium and in front of the CDI judges without the pressure of a CDI.

“Summersby is a really great horse, and only eight years old. I’m just happy that she stayed with me through the whole test. The horse has to get stronger in the work, but she’s really honest and the atmosphere didn’t seem to affect her at all.”

Pape Posts Second Win of the Week

In the CDI3* FEI Grand Prix Special, presented by ProElite®, Great Britain’s Susan Pape and Harmony’s Eclectisch notched up another victory, adding a 70.021% win to their blue ribbon in the qualifying Grand Prix class.

“Our ride felt nice and powerful today,” said Pape. “Unfortunately, I had a mistake in the twos and the ones on the centerline. But other than that, it was very good. The passage on the left lead was very good for him and expressive. In the canter work, the ones were beautiful, and so was the extended canter.”

Pape and the 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood stallion by Zenon, owned by Pape and Harmony Amateur Sports Foundation, have been partnered for a few years, and she reflected on what taking the ride over on the well-trained horse has been like.

For more information and results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

This Video Explains How Wild Horses Can Save Lives and Millions in Taxes from Waste

Wild Horse Fire Brigade is a 501-c-3 nonprofit public benefit corporation. Your donations are made more effective by the fact that we are an all-volunteer organization, so every dollar donated goes towards advancing our mission, saving wild horses, strategies and plans to effectively and naturally save and conserve American wild horses for generations to come.

At the most basic level, we use powerful multimedia, photos, films, documentaries, and even a new music video to carry the important message that American wild horses are critical to the very survival of Americans, our forests, wildlife, watershed, and fisheries, and help to sequester carbon compounds via their evolutionary mutualisms with all North American flora and fauna.

This new 1-mnute video powerfully portrays what is at stake as a result of the gross mismanagement of wild horses at the hands of the Bureau of Land Management.  This undeniable and costly mismanagement adversely impacts ALL Americans everywhere. Please share this video with email lists and on social media.

Consider supporting our work and mission to naturally save American wild horses via our plan titled the ‘Natural Wildfire Abatement and Forest Protection Plan’, a.k.a. Wild Horse Fire Brigade.

Please visit www.wildhorsefirebrigade.org for more information.

Wandres and Bluetooth Dance to Personal Best in Friday Night Stars at AGDF

Frederic Wandres & Bluetooth OLD. Photo © SusanJStickle.com.

Frederic Wandres (GER) returned to the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, Florida and to his customary winning ways with the elegant and powerful Bluetooth OLD. In week three’s highlight class, the CDI4* FEI Grand Prix Freestyle, presented by USPRE Association, the pair posted a new career high score of 81.805%.

Wandres and Bluetooth repeated their podium topping performance from the previous day’s qualifying FEI Grand Prix class. In a truly international podium, second-placed Morgan Barbançon (FRA) also produced a career-high freestyle score during “Friday Night Stars” on her own 17-year-old KWPN gelding Bolero (Glock’s Johnson TN x Vincent), notching up 77.895%. Sweden’s Caroline Darcourt was just 0.065 percentage points behind, logging 77.83% on Lord Django in the horse’s second ever Grand Prix Freestyle.

“I am very happy today,” beamed Wandres, who is based in Germany at Hof Kasselman but is a seasoned competitor at AGDF. “This is the first time for me this season under the lights and I am always looking forward to coming back. I was a little nervous about how it would go because with this special atmosphere, you never know how the horses will handle it, but Bluetooth took it in a positive way. I had a much better feeling than in the Grand Prix; he was way fresher and forward, and it felt like one of the best tests that he has offered me.”

Susan Pape Tops ProElite CDI3* Grand Prix

AGDF regular Susan Pape (GBR) topped the ProElite CDI3* Grand Prix earlier in the day, riding Harmony’s Eclectisch to 70.826%. The 14-year-old stallion received a smattering of eights throughout the test.

“I think the extended canter was pretty good,” enthused Pape, who is based in Germany and is riding at AGDF for the eighth time. “His pirouettes were very nice, his twos were very nice, and all of his canter work is a highlight.”

Pape, along with her sponsor Harmony Sporthorses, bought the son of Zenon x Olivi when he was a rising eight-year-old.

“He was owned by a Swedish woman [Ida-Linn Lundholm] who competed him in the World Championships for young horses’ level, where he was very successful,” explained Pape, who usually produces horses up the levels herself. “At that time, we were looking for an upcoming Grand Prix horse. This time my sponsors wanted to buy me this nice horse. He’s been here [at AGDF] almost every year since then and started here in the Prix St. Georges, and we worked our way up to the Grand Prix.”

For more information and results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Frederic Wandres Seeing Double at Adequan Global Dressage Festival

Frederic Wandres & Hot Hit OLD. Photo © SusanJStickle.com.

Frederic Wandres (GER) earned a career high score on Friday in the FEI Grand Prix at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival and returned this weekend to also score victory in the CDI3* Grand Prix Special, presented by Barnwalkers. Wandres rode Hot Hit OLD, a 12-year-old by Blue Hors Hotline x Diamond Hit to a score just shy of eclipsing his personal best yet again with a 74.34% in the Grand Prix Special. The back-to-back wins came from Wandres during Lloyd Landkamer Memorial week.

Wandres is jumping into his third season at AGDF, a place he has been developing Hot Hit in the international ranks since his first trip to Florida. “I’m very happy with how he managed the cold and windy weather conditions and the atmosphere here,” said Wandres of the striking grey gelding. Wandres plans to focus on one CDI in February with Hot Hit before using him in the CDIO3* Nations Cup for Germany during AGDF 7.

Fuqua, Degele Close Out AGDF 1

Closing out opening week of the AGDF, Kat Fuqua claimed the CDIY Young Riders Freestyle, presented by Diamante Farms, with a score of 69.800% on her own Dreamgirl, 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood (Speilberg x Goodtimes). The final salute came from Heidi Degele in the CDI1* Intermediate I Freestyle, presented by Harmony Sporthorses, aboard Ibistrona, a nine-year-old Dutch Warmblood (Don Tango B x Sunny Boy 124) with a 69.250%.

For more information and results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Adrienne Lyle Claims FEI World Cup Grand Prix Freestyle

Adrienne Lyle and Salvino. Photo © SusanJStickle.com.

The first “Friday Night Stars” evening of musical freestyle action during the 2023 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, FL lived up to its stellar billing despite unseasonably chilly temperatures.

The week’s highlight class, the FEI World Cup™ Grand Prix Freestyle, presented by Lövsta Stuteri, produced top class dressage, personal bests on the podium, and a winning score of over 83%.

Adrienne Lyle (USA) and the 16-year-old stallion Salvino made it two for two in the Lloyd Landkamer Memorial week when they scooped the blue ribbon with 83.54% for a harmonious test brimming with expression and power. Lyle and Betsy Juliano’s Sandro Hit x Donnerhall son topped the previous day’s qualifying Grand Prix with 77.5%. In the freestyle, second placed Sarah Tubman (USA) kicked off her Wellington season with a personal best of 78.25% on another stallion, the 13-year-old First Apple, while third placed Caroline Darcourt (SWE) and Lord Django contested their first Grand Prix freestyle and pulled out a 78.17% performance.

Lyle is chasing down one of three starting places allocated to North America for the FEI World Cup™ Final in Omaha, NE in April. Her top score of 86% came courtesy of the Dutch five-star judge at H, Mariette Sanders- van Gansewinkel.

Of her performance, Lyle said, “I’m super thrilled to be here again at this amazing venue and I was happy to see how packed it was despite this cold weather. Salvino felt great — he was fiery and very excited to be here.

“We did most of the things on my terms, and some of the things on his terms — but like any good relationship, it’s all about compromise, and he feels great,” added Lyle of Salvino, whom she rode on the silver medal USA team at the Tokyo Olympics.

Frederic Wandres Earns Career High Score

Earlier in the day, the 35-year-old German rider Frederic Wandres rode Hot Hit OLD to a career high score in the CDI3* FEI Grand Prix, presented by Barnwalkers — the qualifier for Saturday’s Grand Prix Special. All five judges placed the pair first, awarding 75.348% overall, improving on their previous best by over 1%.

“The consistency of the test today was the winning thing,” said Wandres. “He had not been out since August, so he has had a bit of a break, but he came back very good and my feeling was strong.

Wandres has ridden Hot Hit at Hof Kasselmann, where he works, since the grey gelding by Blue Hors Hotline x Diamond Hit was six. The now 12-year-old already has an impressive resume, and this victory took his unbeaten streak to five.

For more information and a full list of results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Adrienne Lyle Tops FEI World Cup Grand Prix

Adrienne Lyle and Salvino. Photo © SusanJStickle.com.

The 2023 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival opened on Thursday, January 12, with a victory for U.S. Olympic team silver medalist Adrienne Lyle. She and Salvino, a 2007 Hanoverian stallion (Sandro HIT x Donnerhall) won the FEI World Cup™ Grand Prix, presented by Lövsta Stuteri, to start the final leg of their FEI World Cup™ Final qualifying bid in style.

All three grand prix podium finishers scored over 70%, with Lyle and Salvino topping the list with a 77.5% as the last to compete. The class was a qualifier for the FEI World Cup™ Grand Prix Freestyle, which takes place under the lights on Friday night during the first of the “Friday Night Stars” series.

“He’s just always so incredible in the ring,” said Lyle of her mount from the Tokyo Olympic games. “He went in again today with another mistake free test. He really clicked into the rhythm for the piaffe and passage work. I think we still have more in the tank for the freestyle, so I’m excited about that.

“It should be nice and cool weather tomorrow with a packed house and he loves both those things,” continued Lyle of Salvino, owned by Betsy Juliano.

Of her grand prix test, Lyle discussed the high points, saying, “The piaffe, passage, and last centerline were super. I love feeling him finishing a test with that much energy and enthusiasm.”

Fellow U.S. rider Sarah Tubman and First Apple, and 2010 Dutch Warmblood stallion (Vivaldi x T.C.N. Partout) finished in the runner-up position with a score of 70.5% for owner Summit Farm. Rounding out the podium, Sweden’s Caroline Darcourt posted a score of 70.283% riding Lord Django, a 2010 Hanoverian gelding (Stalypso x Londonderry) for owner Lövsta Stuteri.

Caroline Darcourt Leads Off for Sweden

Opening the day on Thursday, Caroline Darcourt stole the show in the CDI1* FEI Prix St. Georges, presented by Harmony Sporthorses. Five scores broke into the 70% range, but Darcourt and Bournonville, a 2013 Danish-bred gelding (Bon Bravour x Loudini) owned by Lövsta Stuteri, topped the list with a 73.029%.

“It feels very good to be back in Florida; it’s been three years since the last time I was here,” said Darcourt of her return to Wellington. “I’m very happy to be here with this horse and the win, I would say, was over my expectations. I’m really thrilled about it.”

Great Britain’s Susan Pape finished second on a score of 72.756% riding Harmony’s V-Plus for owner Harmony Sporthorses. In third, Charlotte Jorst (USA) and Federle posted a 71.882% for owner Kastel Denmark.

Darcourt spoke highly of Bournonville after their test, saying, “He’s been with us since he was late seven, and he has a very sensitive side. Now I feel he’s finally secure with me and he really likes the ring and his job. He is so rideable and has all the qualities.

“I would say the trot work felt very fluid and he was with me the whole time and really listened to me,” said Darcourt of her Prix St. Georges test. “The canter work and the first pirouette I was happy with, but there is more to work on. With him, the goal now is to keep moving up.”

For more information and a full list of results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Prescribed Burns Are Not the Silver Bullet Suggested for Wildfires

Photo: A family of wild horses that is reducing wildfire fuels on the forest floor. Reduced wildfire fuels results in less heat produced during a wildfire.

YREKA, CA, US, January 8, 2023 /EINPresswire.com/ — There are people, NGOs and some elected officials, who want to do prescribed burning across tens of millions of acres in America to reduce key wildfire fuels (grass and brush).

“Most unfortunately, it seems that the most effective method for managing grass and brush wildfire fuels, using large bodied herbivores, is being overlooked in favor of methods that can be monetized,” said William E. Simpson II.

By far, the most cost-effective method involves relocating taxpayer-owned American wild horses into wildfire prone remote critical wilderness areas.

The question stands:

Are some non-governmental organizations, as well as county and state elected officials, going to continue selling American taxpayers the myth that prescribed/controlled/cultural burns are somehow a silver bullet for the cost effective management of catastrophic wildfires in an environmentally friendly manner?

Empirically speaking, we have data that prove prescribed burning by any name is not only very costly, it’s led to some of the largest and most expensive wildfire disasters ever, killing wildlife by the millions, damaging soils and watersheds, and pouring more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

As we have already seen time and time again, ‘prescribed burning’, also known as ‘controlled burning’, is extremely dangerous, deadly, and financially costly in many ways, even when used by highly-trained professionals supported by the best technology available today.

The most recent use of prescribed burning by professionals at the United States Forest Service (USFS) turned disaster was experienced in New Mexico, where two prescribed burns went wrong, joined together, and became the largest and most costly wildfire disaster in the history of the state.

From the Washington Post:

“In a statement, the Forest Service said that what began as a controlled burn in the Santa Fe National Forest in January, meant to clear away vegetation and prevent catastrophic wildfires in the future, turned into a ‘sleeper fire.’ It over-wintered beneath the ground, continuing to burn slowly until it re-emerged in early April.

Fueled by strong, gusty winds, the Calf Canyon fire escaped firefighters’ attempts to contain it.

On April 22, it merged with the Hermits Peak fire, which also began as a prescribed burn set by the Forest Service that grew out of control. In the month since then, the combined blazes have destroyed hundreds of homes and displaced thousands of people.”

When it comes to ‘prescribed burning’, ‘controlled burning’, or as it’s now being rebranded as ‘Eco-Cultural Fire’ to confuse taxpayers into thinking it’s somehow a safer fire, playing with fire, regardless of who’s doing it or where, results in disaster, time and time again.

An excerpt from a 2015 article from Outside Magazine titled “When Prescribed Burns Go Wrong” clearly shows that the disasters that stem from prescribed burning are being repeated over and over, as are the evolving explanations and excuses for the disasters:

“Tom Scanlan’s house burned down on an early spring afternoon in March 2012. Just days before, the Colorado State Forest Service had set fire to the dangerously overgrown forest near the Lower North Fork of the Platte River, about 40 miles outside Denver. The controlled burn was supposed to stave off a future blaze; instead, warm temperatures and high winds fanned a wall of flames that torched 1,400 acres, left three people dead, and destroyed 23 homes — even those like Scanlan’s with defensible space. ‘They did a number of things wrong,’ says the 69-year-old former aeronautics executive, ‘but the biggest thing was setting that fire in the first place.’

Each year, more people like Scanlan move into the so-called wildland-urban interface. Ten million new homes were built in these exurban areas between 2000 and 2010; over 30 percent of America’s housing stock is now in the WUI. That means a growing number of people risk evacuation, property loss, and death when these kinds of accidents occur.

In March of this year, high winds and temperatures rekindled an extinguished burn in Red Lodge, Montana, forcing 500 skiers off the local ski area; another burn, in Victorville, California, quickly exploded into a 70-acre wildfire that required evacuation of 25 houses. The fires aren’t always so small. In 2000, the prescribed Cerro Grande fire near Los Alamos, New Mexico torched over 280 homes. While residents have sued government agencies over burns gone wild, it’s hard to prove negligence; it’s more common to receive a small payout through emergency funds. (Those affected by the North Fork fire that destroyed Scanlan’s home received approximately $18 million from the Colorado government.)”

There are many more examples of prescribed/controlled burns gone wrong and causing death and costly disaster. It’s evident that any arguable benefits of these intentional fires are far outweighed by the adverse results of these prescribed burns.

Think about what is being sold, that prescribed burning grass and brush fuels in the winter that didn’t get burned by a wildfire in the summer, somehow makes the landscape safer.

The giant bug in that ointment is the fact that grass and brush are ‘annual fuels’ and come back onto the landscape in full force by late spring/early summer and dry quickly and stay dry longer thanks to climate change.

So what exactly is accomplished by winter prescribed burning?

The answer is: very little, other than spending boat-loads of tax dollars and risking more devastation being inflicted upon the people, homes, forests, wildlife, watersheds, and the climate via adding greenhouse gases.

The most important question goes unasked: why?

It seems that there are people who are directly or indirectly monetizing annual wildfires who are not interested in asking the single most important question in regard to the evolution of wildfire.

Why now is the landscape suffering from over-abundant annually-occurring grass and brush wildfire fuels buildup?

The answer to this most important question is not climate change, nor is it a lack of logging trees, which opens up the canopy and stimulates the growth of under-story plants and grasses (wildfire fuels). And in remote wilderness areas suffering from a collapsed herbivory, the buildup of these grass and brush fuels is prodigious.

The answer and reason for the now massive buildups of annual grass and brush, which are the key fuels in over 60% of all wildfires, is that our native species herbivory has collapsed due to mismanagement. Prodigious grass and brush fuels that grow annually, even in spite of climate change, are the root cause of catastrophic wildfires.

There is an important tool being intentionally sequestered by some elected officials in favor of the lucrative enterprises related to wildfire suppression (a.k.a. firefighting).

That tool is a plan known as the Natural Wildfire Abatement and Forest Protection Plan.

The winners from implementing this plan include:

1. Timber Industry
2. Forest and wildlife enthusiasts
3. Fisheries
4. Hunting Industry (benefits all game animals)
5. Livestock Industry
6. Insurance Industry
7. Climate Change/Crises

This presentation about Wildfire & Wild Horses at the 2022 Mustang Summit (30 min. talk) outlines a plan for reestablishing our native herbivory, which is our 1st-line tool for wildfire prevention:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3pCv0VgMOI

Primer on ABC NEWS story about the Natural Wildfire Abatement and Forest Protection Plan:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFrLJ2vashU

Are Wild Horses a Native Species?

Here’s what the world’s leading Equine Paleontologist (Dr. Ross MacPhee – Curator at the American Museum of Natural History) told the world at a transcribed lecture in New York: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-zNiS1uqCWZ9PimwJpaVdY7NC57hxdGKDCLXbCEYb8c/.

The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California recognized wild horses as native species, explaining that BLM “establishes Appropriate Management Levels (‘AMLs’) for populations of native species – including wild horses, burros, and other wildlife – and introduced animals, such as livestock.” In Defense of Animals, et al. v. U.S. Dept. Interior, et al., No. 12-17804, *6 (9th Cir. May 12, 2014).

Wild Horse Fire Brigade Org (and like-minded supporters) believe that existing wild horse management is flawed and exorbitantly costly due to law from 1971 that predated consumer-driven land-use demands, and is based upon science from the 1950s-1960s that is now clearly obsolete and contradicts intelligent wild horse management.

Further, Wild Horse Fire Brigade Org believes that it is not good for wild horses and livestock to remain commingled in areas virtually devoid of the natural predators of wild horses, and where wild horses are deemed to be in conflict with consumer-driven land-use demands. This is of paramount import given there is about 115-million acres of wildfire-prone remote critical wilderness where livestock production and motorized equipment/vehicles are prohibited by law.

And as such, horses should properly be humanely relocated to other available wilderness areas where they provide proven wildfire fuels management benefits to taxpayers and other stakeholders and where they will not be in conflict with land-use demands; they should be relocated to wilderness areas that are both economically and ecologically appropriate, ending the problem.

Putting fire onto 12 million acres of public lands in California, for instance, is not only prohibitively expensive and required virtually on an annual basis, it flies in the face of the logic of published peer-reviewed science:

1. Prescribed/controlled/cultural fires do not sequester carbon compounds into the soils as is the case with herbivores, and fire sends more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. EIN NEWS: https://www.einpresswire.com/article/606747655/eco-cultural-fire-rebranding-failed-prescribed-burning-as-wildfire-fuels-management

2. Even low intensity wildfire (and prescribed/controlled/cultural burns) damages soils, especially when done repeatedly.

California’s current population of deer is collapsed and down approx. 3 million animals that were previously annually grazing approx. 3.6 million tons of annual grass and brush which remains on the landscape annually. Any fire in areas that are habitually overgrown and stocked with abnormally high levels of fuels will burn catastrophic hot, regardless of who is using applied fire in an attempt to reduce annual grass and brush fuels.

1) Low-severity wildfires impact soils more than previously believed: Desert Research Institute https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/09/180910160632.htm

“Low-severity wildland fires and prescribed burns have long been presumed by scientists and resource managers to be harmless to soils, but this may not be the case, new research shows. According to two new studies, low-severity burns cause damage to soil structure and organic matter in ways that are not immediately apparent after a fire.”

‘High and low-temperature pyrolysis profiles describe volatile organic compound emissions from western US wildfire fuels’: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/326192351_High-_and_low-temperature_pyrolysis_profiles_describe_volatile_organic_compound_emissions_from_western_US_wildfire_fuels

2) After the Fires – Hydrophobic Soils. University of Idaho: https://www.uidaho.edu/-/media/UIdaho-Responsive/Files/Extension/topic/forestry/F5-After-the-Fires-Hydrophobic-Soils.pdf

“Aside from property and aesthetic loss, this can include situations where highly erodible soils are exposed by burning the organic material on the soil surface. The burning of litter and organic material can reduce infiltration, increase surface runoff and erosion, and lead to hydrophobicity, or hydrophobic soils.”

3) Importance of maintaining cover crops in wilderness for ground water during drought.

‘Comparing infiltration rates in soils managed with conventional and alternative farming methods: A meta-analysis’: https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0215702

“We found that introducing perennials (grasses, agroforestry, managed forestry) or cover crops led to the largest increases in infiltration rates (mean responses of 59.2 ± 20.9% and 34.8 ± 7.7%, respectively). Also, although the overall effect of no-till was non-significant (5.7 ± 9.7%), the practice led to increases in wetter climates and when combined with residue retention.”

This press release can be viewed in its entirety online at: https://www.einpresswire.com/article/610215907/.

Please visit www.wildhorsefirebrigade.org for more information.

Urge Park Service to Preserve Horses in Teddy Roosevelt National Park

Teddy Roosevelt National Park (TRNP), located in North Dakota, is dedicated in honor of President Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt and his leadership in conservation policy.  While these horses are not protected under Federal law and are referred to as “livestock,” they have been cherished cultural icons for decades. When Teddy Roosevelt was young, he visited the area and experienced the magnificence and beauty of the natural landscape which included wild bison and wild horses exhibiting natural wild behaviors — living in family bands, with stallions protecting their families.

The Park Service is now proposing to either get rid of all of the horses or allow only 35-60 — of the more than 200 horses living in the area — to remain. The Park Service manages the Park for cultural and natural resources and claims to rely on public input for Park management. PLEASE SPEAK UP for these magnificent horses NOW — they truly are cultural icons!

Tell the Park Service the following (in your own words):

  • Preserving the Teddy Roosevelt horses MUST be a cornerstone of the Park’s livestock management plan, since they contributed to President Teddy Roosevelt’s wonder at the natural world, leading to his creation of the very first national parks.
  • Horses have lived “wild” in TRNP for generations and millions of Park visitors cherish these animals as an integral part of the cultural heritage of the Badlands.
  • These horses must be managed to preserve natural behaviors just as Teddy Roosevelt would have experienced. He would have seen stallions protecting their families, foals with their mothers and aunties, and the entire repertoire of natural “wild” horse behaviors.
  • To protect the genetic health of the herd and promote its genetic viability, the minimum population should be 150 or more. By allowing the horses to use additional areas of the TRNP, the herd can and should be managed at a higher minimum population level.

Your voice makes a difference.  Please submit your comments directly to the Park Service by clicking here.

The Cloud Foundation
www.thecloudfoundation.org