Tag Archives: Equine Protection

Wild Horses Killed for Their Meat?

If we don’t act now, thousands of America’s iconic wild horses may be culled — or sold off to meat slaughterhouses in Mexico and Canada, where torture and painful death await.

For nearly 3 decades, wild horses have been protected by a ban on the slaughter of healthy animals or any sale that “results in their destruction for processing into commercial products.”  But Trump’s 2018 budget proposal would allow “humane euthanasia and unrestricted sale of certain excess animals.”

No horse’s life is “excess,” and these animals do not deserve to be rounded up, slaughtered, and sold for meat just to give more land to rich cattle ranchers, as many speculate will be the case.

Instead of brutally killing America’s horses, the government should enact cruelty free population control measures, such as reducing births. Better yet, they should protect the public land on which these majestic creatures roam free.

Sign the petition to tell Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke that he must prohibit the slaughter and sale of America’s wild horses. Thousands of horses’ lives depend on it!

Sign the petition

Launching New on the Range Volunteer Site

It is with excitement we announce the launch of a nation-wide initiative, a guide to the future management of wild horses and burros. It replaces helicopters and holding with on the range tools and committed volunteers who are willing to embark on a grand adventure in the still vibrant wild West.

Imagine every wild horse and burro herd roaming in freedom like they do in the Pryor Mountains (MT), the McCullough Peaks (WY), Onaqui (UT), Pine Nuts (NV), Challis (ID), Spring Creek Basin, Little Book Cliffs and Sand Wash Basin (CO). This is the goal. And it can only happen if you get involved.

We encourage you to read the guide and imagine where you fit in as part of a volunteer team. Is it becoming a PZP darter, photographer, drone pilot, driver, record keeper on the range, or a record keeper at home sitting in front of your computer? Partnering with the BLM you will become a guardian of the herd – ensuring a future for these awe-inspiring wild animals on their home ranges.

Check out the Website: (https://www.whbvresourcecenter.org) review the Resource Guide (https://www.whbvresourcecenter.org/resource-guide) then go to the National Volunteer Registry (https://whbvolunteer.wufoo.com/forms/wild-horse-burro-national-volunteer-registration/) and sign up.

The wild horses and burros are counting on us.

Happy Trails,
Ginger and Team

The Cloud Foundation
107 South 7th St
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
www.thecloudfoundation.org

BLM Plotting War on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

Photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

“Turning to mass slaughter would mark a U-turn on the government’s response to wild horse management programs…”

The Department of the Interior, under the leadership of Secretary Ryan Zinke, has signaled its intention to strip decades-old federal protections for wild horses and burros and to allow them to be shipped to slaughter by the tens of thousands. Public comments and Congressional testimony from Zinke and other high-ranking government officials represents the most severe threat to wild horses since the ghastly and cruel killing practices of the 1960s prompted Congress to adopt the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.

Turning to mass slaughter would mark a U-turn on the government’s response to wild horse management programs. It was only in April that Congress passed a spending bill with sensible wild horse provisions for the remainder of 2017. That bill included language preventing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and its contractors from sending wild horses to slaughter for human consumption. It further directed the BLM to create a plan to maintain long-term, sustainable populations on the range in a humane manner.

Now, just two months after President Trump signed the 2017 Omnibus spending bill into law, the Department of the Interior is saying it is going to default to slaughter because it’s possessed with no other options. In the president’s budget request for 2018, the department has asked for the ability to maintain wild horse and burro populations at dramatically reduced levels and to get there by slaughtering the animals.

While there are always going to be major challenges in managing wild horses and burros on our western public lands and in satisfying the diverse stakeholders in the debate, there are certain options that should never even be considered because they are simply outside the bounds of how animals should be treated. Mass slaughter is one of those dreadful ideas, an action that flies in the face of the now longstanding prohibition on slaughter and of the instincts of millions of Americans to protect these magnificent symbols of the American West.

The BLM has never been exemplary at managing horses. Far from it. For 20 years, the agency’s primary strategy for wild horse and burro populations has largely consisted of rounding up and removing the animals from our public lands – an effort that has resulted in tens of thousands of wild horses and burros being kept in holding facilities at a cost now approaching $50 million a year — more than half of the BLM’s annual budget for the entire wild horse and burro program. Partly because the costs of caring for so many captive horses are undermining the larger program, the agency has failed to commit any additional money to implement sufficient fertility control programs, which have been long recommended by The HSUS and the National Academies of Sciences.

The aggressive and widespread use of fertility control is the only way to confront this crisis in the long term. The horses need to be managed, but in a humane manner. Fertility control works, but only if there’s a serious investment in the enterprise on the ground. By preventing the birth of foals, the agency will find itself under less pressure to round up so many horses. Fewer round-ups mean substantial cost savings, since not as many animals need to be pastured and fed in short-term and long-term holding facilities. A capture-and-kill strategy, on the other hand, will only make matters worse, because it will cause the horses to compensate by reproducing at a higher rate on the range.

We cannot readily resolve the politics of managing the captive and free-roaming wild horse populations without a struggle. It won’t be easy to get a handle on this. But one thing is for sure: sanctioning the slaughter of tens of thousands of horses is a disgraceful, shameful idea. It is an unacceptable idea that will produce protests in the streets, from Reno to Washington, D.C. Mass slaughter will happen only over the cries, protests, and interventions of the American people.

Tell Secretary Zinke that you do not support the slaughter of America’s wild horses by calling 202-208-7351.

By Wayne Pacelle as posted on Humane Nation

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/06/16/blm-plotting-war-on-americas-wild-horses-and-burros/

Interior Secretary and Utah Congressman Present Fictional Account of Wild Horses

Three grulla horses Crooks Mountain HMA.

I just got back from a trip to the Pryors and to the Red Desert Complex of south central Wyoming. The horses all look so fabulous and the Red Desert is horse heaven with abundant forage and so much room to roam. Maybe that is why the Congressional Public Resource Sub-Committee hearing threw me for a loop! Here is that section of the hearing with Chris Stewart of Utah questioning and commenting to Secretary Zinke.

Secretary of the Interior testifies before Congressional Sub-Committee June 8, 2017. The Secretary is being questioned by Congressman Stewart of Utah.

This Congressional conversation bears no resemblance to what I am seeing first hand on our ranges. After I left the Pryors, I visited four Herd Management areas in Wyoming called the Red Desert Complex, areas scheduled for devastating roundups this fall. BLM proposes to remove over 2,000 wild horses.

They would leave less than1 horse per 1,000 acres in the 750,000 acre Red Desert Complex! Congressman Stewart contends that wild horses are devastating western rangelands and starving to death. Here’s what is devastating rangelands. I happened on this site while looking for wild horses in the Stewart Creek HMA. When I turned off the dirt road onto a two track the acrid smell of cow manure hit me like a slap in the face. Then I saw the cattle and the land around the pond. The area was devastated, not by horses, but by cattle.

The Secretary spoke of birth control methods that do not work. This too is completely inaccurate. PZP works in all the herds that use it but I can count those herds on the fingers of both hands. And Congressman Stewart chimed in that the cost was thousands of dollars (for a dose). The Secretary agreed.

I feel like I am living in an alternative reality. PZP is $27 a dose and PZP-22 is a couple hundred dollars a dose — but thousands? Where do these gentlemen get their information?

It is critically important that you make your voices heard. The American public is the only thing standing between the death and destruction of our herds on the range and in holding. Please keep calling the White House and your Congressional Representatives and U.S. Senators and telling them that you want your wild horses to live in freedom on the range.

WHITE HOUSE: Call the President — 202-456-1111 (not weekends)

SENATE: https://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/

HOUSE: http://m.house.gov/representatives/

CALLING INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Leave your name (spell it) and the town where you live.
  2. Give 2 or 3 short sentences on your explicit concerns for the preservation and protection of our wild horses and burros.
  3. Give your name again and express thanks for the opportunity to give comments.
  4. You will probably get a Voicemail — but that’s okay. These elected officials must understand how important this is to you, and phone calls are all logged. If 50,000 of The Cloud Foundation followers will call, that adds up to 200,000 phone calls to Washington DC!

Thank you! Now let’s all get to work and make those phone calls for our wild horses and burros.

Ginger Kathrens
Executive Director

The Cloud Foundation
107 South 7th St
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
www.thecloudfoundation.org

FEI Tribunal Issues Final Decision in Kevin Thornton Case

Lausanne (SUI), 7 June 2016 – The FEI Tribunal has issued its Final Decision on the case opened by the FEI last November against Irish Jumping athlete Kevin Thornton (FEI ID 10056297) for alleged abuse of the horse Flogas Sunset Cruise (FEI ID 103KQ92), which died at Cagnes-sur-Mer (FRA) on 10 October 2016.

The FEI Tribunal found the athlete guilty of horse abuse and has suspended him for four months from the date of the decision (6 June 2017), and imposed a fine of CHF 5,000 and costs of CHF 5,000.

In its findings, the FEI Tribunal determined that the athlete’s behaviour “went way beyond what could be considered an acceptable conduct towards a horse” and further concluded “with confidence that the horse has been whipped repeatedly, substantially and excessively and clearly more than the three (3) times alleged by Mr Thornton.”

The FEI stated in its testimony that “even if the horse had survived, a case of horse abuse would still have been opened by the FEI.” As the autopsy did not confirm the cause of death, the FEI Tribunal clarified that it was “not deciding on the potential responsibility of Mr Thornton for the tragic death of the horse.”

“The FEI stood up for horse welfare by taking this case to the FEI Tribunal and given the severity of this incident I truly would have expected a much tougher sanction,” FEI Secretary General Sabrina Ibáñez said. “It was important to the FEI that the allegation of horse abuse was confirmed by the Tribunal. We had requested a two-year suspension, but the level of sanctions is at the discretion of the Tribunal and we respect its independence.”

The Decision can be appealed before the Court of Arbitration for Sport within 21 days from the date of notification (6 June 2017).

FEI Media Contacts:

Grania Willis
Director Press Relations
grania.willis@fei.org
+41 787 506 142

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
Email: ruth.grundy@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 145

Presidential Budget Dooms Wild Horses

This is a frightening time for our wild horses and burros, not only for those in holding, but also those roaming free.

Please watch this brief video which we shot on May 24 with Cloud’s beautiful son Ohanzee east of Colorado Springs at Jaime Wade’s ranch.

This is the Cloud Foundation interpretation of the President’s proposed $10 million cut to the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Budget which includes chilling language:

“The remainder of the funding decrease will be achieved by reducing gathers, reducing birth control treatments, and other activities deemed inconsistent with prudent management of the program. The long-term goal is to realign program costs and animal populations to more manageable levels, enabling BLM to reorient the WHB program back to these traditional management strategies.”

The BLM contends that the horses on the range exceed the ridiculously low national AML of 26,700 by over 40,000 animals. There are over 40,000 animals in long and short term holding. 80,000 could be killed if we, the American people, do not speak up!

There has never been such a grave a threat to the existence of our wild horses as right now!

Use the links provided in the video to call the WHITE HOUSE, your U.S. REPRESENTATIVE, and your 2 SENATORS. We must flood and overload the phone lines with calls. This will take only 4 phone calls — probably 1 minute each.

Never has it been more important for you to speak up on behalf of the future of our wild horses and burros!

CALLING INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Leave your name (spell it) and the town where you live.
  2. Give 2 or 3 short sentences on your explicit concerns for the preservation and protection of our wild horses and burros.
  3. Give your name again and express thanks for the opportunity to give comments.
  4. You will probably get a Voicemail — but that’s okay. These elected officials must understand how important this is to you, and phone calls are all logged. If 50,000 of The Cloud Foundation followers will call, that adds up to 200,000 phone calls to Washington DC!

Thank you! Now let’s all get to work and make those phone calls for our wild horses and burros.

Ginger Kathrens
Executive Director

The Cloud Foundation
107 South 7th St
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
www.thecloudfoundation.org

Rob Lowe Joins Our Board and the Sneaky Wording in the Appropriations Bill

Actor Rob Lowe has joined the Advisory Board for Saving America’s Mustangs and Mustang Monument. Rob is an acclaimed actor in movies such as The Outsiders and St. Elmo’s Fire but then moved to award winning television shows such as The West Wing, Parks and Recreation and The Grinder.

Recent Changes to the Appropriations Bill Is a Worry for Wild Mustangs & Burros

A recent change to the 2017 Appropriations Bill has put our beloved Wild Horses and Burros in more danger. The bill revision included an addition which robs wild horses and burros in holding facilities of their protected status under the Wild Horse and Burro Act. Further, these animals could be transferred to Federal, State, or local agencies which would then only require “the recommendation of a licensed veterinarian, in cases of severe injury, illness, or advanced age” to dispose of the animal.

This cloak-and-dagger tactic of sneaking this verbiage into the Appropriations Bill is creating a loophole in legislation to which several hundred if not thousands of mustangs will fall prey.  It is certainly putting slaughter back on the table as the option for these animals, and that just will not do.

Further, the notion of transferring these animals from the Bureau of Land Management over to Federal, State or local government agencies is also taking steps backward. Once we start removing protections for these animals, it will be harder to regain ground for not only conservation, but also to stop the round ups and incarceration of these innocent creatures.

Now is the time for government to see the value in using private business as a solution to this ongoing issue. Private Businesses like Mustang Monument would not only provide a solution, but transparency and monetary savings as well. Further private businesses have the motivation to get things done rather than to getting stuck in the same ol’ mud hole. Let’s fix this problem. It is not that hard; it just takes communication.

Please contact the following people to voice your concerns for these majestic animals:

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Chair, Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee
DC office: (202) 224-6665
AK office: (907) 271-3735

Sen. Tom Udall, Ranking Member, Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee
DC office: (202) 224-6621
NM office: (505) 346-6791

Rep. Ken Calvert
DC office: (202) 225-1986
CA office: (951) 277-0042

Rep. Betty McCollum
DC office: (202) 225-6631
MN office: (651) 224-9191

Saving America’s Mustangs

The High Price of Protecting Our Wild Horse Herds

Photo: Divide Basin band.

Dear Friends:

Not everything we do here at the Cloud Foundation is in the limelight, but it is crucial in our fight to keep our wild horse families living in precious freedom on their home ranges.  Our legal efforts to do this are costly. Some go on for years, like our commitment to preventing the cruel sterilization of the entire Saylor Creek Herd in Idaho.

Our fight to prevent the removal of all the wild horses in Utah’s Beaver County continues as does our work to keep wild horses living wild and free on the vast checkerboard lands of southern Wyoming.

Preventing wild horse families from losing their freedom on lands in the checkerboard along the I-80 corridor is a real challenge. The powerful Rock Springs Grazing Association covets all these lands for their cattle and sheep. They want the wild horses gone, removed, and locked up!

Bottom line, we have to keep as many horses out of holding as we possibly can! This is a critical time and legal action is one of the only ways to keep them safe on their homes on the range.

As most of you know, my colleagues on BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board voted to destroy the wild horses in holding. I was the only dissenting voice. The door the Advisory Board cracked open last fall could swing wide if the Secretary of the Interior supports the “humane euthanasia” of thousands of healthy wild horses in holding. This is a very real possibility.

Please consider a special donation to support our legal efforts. We had two precedent-setting wins in Federal District Court last year which will help protect wild horses in the future. To continue our legal battles, your generous support is essential!

Click here to donate to the TCF Mustang Legal Fund.

Thanks,
Ginger Kathrens

The Cloud Foundation
107 South 7th St
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
www.thecloudfoundation.org

Mining Threatens Three Wild Horse Herds

Please Comment by April 17 on the Planning Expansion of the Gold Bar Mine. Nevada wild horse herds threatened!

Dear Friends of our Wild Horses:

Comments for an Environmental Impact Statement are due April 17th, 2017 regarding the massive expansion of the Gold Bar Mine north of Eureka, Nevada.

If this expansion moves forward it will threaten three wild horse herds areas: Roberts Mountain, Fish Creek, and Whistler Herd Management Areas (HMAs).

Please take a few minutes and comment on this destructive mining project using your own words.

Here are a few key points we suggest you make to the Bureau of Land Management:

  1. Open pit gold mining is the most destructive use of the land with little ability to mitigate the damage.
  2. The project would expand to 44,000 acres or 62.5 square miles.
  3. The project would consume approximately 2 billion gallons of water over a ten-year period, depleting both surface and ground water.
  4. Nevada is the driest state in the Union.
  5. Lack of water is regularly the reason BLM/Nevada gives for conducting emergency removals of wild horses from the range. 14 herds were zeroed out in 2009 based on the prediction of little available water!
  6. Wild horses and other wildlife will suffer from the environmental destruction and lack of water. Sage Grouse occupy the area and are a species of critical environment concern.
  7. The mining expansion is based on out-of-date mining plans from 1992.
  8. Gold mining is highly speculative. The previous mine owners, Atlas Corporation, filed for bankruptcy and abandoned the land in an unreclaimed condition in 1999.

Read TCF full comments here:  EISCommentsGoldBarMineNV. Tell BLM to select the NO ACTION ALTERNATIVE.

Send your comments to Christine Gabriel, Project Manager, Subject: DEIS MMI Gold Bar Mine Project, Email: blm_nv_bmdo_mlfo_gold_bar_project_eis@blm.gov.

Thanks very much for helping our Nevada wild herds!

Happy Trails!
Ginger Kathrens

The Cloud Foundation
107 South 7th St
Colorado Springs, CO 80905
www.thecloudfoundation.org

ESP and PBEC Remind Wellington Equestrian Community of Proper Biosecurity Procedures

Wellington, FL – March 31, 2017 – Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) and Palm Beach Equine Clinic, the official veterinarians of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL, remind the Wellington equestrian community to follow strict biosecurity procedures as horses are prepared for long-distance travel in the coming weeks.

As a result of the positive equine influenza test reported at WEF on March 14, veterinarians have implemented biosecurity procedures, and those in contact with horses in Wellington are encouraged to do the same. Because of the presence of equine influenza in Wellington, we remind all competitors of the importance of regular temperature checks, proper hygiene, and biosecurity, with suggested protocols listed below.

While there have been confirmed cases of equine influenza in Wellington, there are still NO confirmed cases of equine herpes or other infectious diseases.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact your veterinarian or the horse show office at 561-793-5867. Questions may also be directed to Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599.

Further information will be updated as it becomes available.

BIOSECURITY PROCEDURES

An integral part of a showing environment includes healthy horses.  Exhibitors, especially those traveling long distances, can contribute to that healthy environment by following some basic recommendations listed below.

  1. A current negative Coggins test. Please renew before it expires, and not just before it is necessary to leave the state. It is strongly recommended that all horses be vaccinated for Equine EHV-1 (either modified live or killed vaccine) no sooner than 7 days prior and no later than 90 days prior to entering the show grounds. Most EHV-1 vaccines are only considered effective for 90 days. Check with your veterinarian about which vaccine you use.
  2. A health certificate within 48 hours is required for all horses shipping onto the property. All horses should be able to produce proof of vaccine, preferably labeled on these health certificates. Those who need health certificates when they arrive can contact Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599 or contact PBEC vets on the show grounds.
  3. You should be able to document your horse’s normal temperature before arrival. Please do not ship horses with elevated temperatures. It is recommended that you establish a log of temperatures taken at least twice daily. If there is an elevated temperature for more than a 24-hour period, please consult your local Veterinarian immediately.
  4. Every effort should be made to minimize stress and commingling of horses shipped long distances. Extra hours on a horse van, or moving from stable to stable, is the fastest way to compromise your horses’ and your neighbors’ horses’ health.
  5. Any horse on the show grounds with a fever of unknown origin or of suspicious origin should be reported to Equestrian Sport Productions Management. It is always better to err on the side of safety. Isolation stalls will either be available on the grounds or at a local veterinary practice if the need arises.
  6. Please take the time to review equine good hygiene practices and express its importance to your grooms in everyday care.

Please visit www.PBIEC.com or call 561-793-5867 for more information.