Tag Archives: Saving America’s Mustangs

Tell Secretary Zinke to Save Our Wild Horses

The persecution of our nation’s wild horses is at an all-time high, and it is disgusting to hear the Bureau of Land Management’s reasons for wanting to wipe out these American Icons. They have said on multiple occasions that they have no other options than to slaughter the horses that they round up – but there are many other alternatives that they refuse to entertain, because they just want this “problem” to go away so that they can appease the special interests in the swamp in Washington.

This is not a complicated issue, and it is absurd that our government insists on wasting time and taxpayer money when we stand ready to come in and fix this issue for them. We have the tools and resources to make this right, and we are ready and willing to work with the new administration to solve this issue once and for all. For years, Madeleine Pickens, Founder of Saving America’s Mustangs, has been working tirelessly, and investing millions of her own money into creating a sanctuary for America’s wild horses, Mustang Monument. Yet, despite her continued efforts, the BLM refuses to work with her, and instead have opted to implement copious roadblocks to keep her from operating her sanctuary, and sharing the wonder of these animals with the public.

Join us as we address Secretary Zinke directly, and tell him that we, the American people, are unwilling to allow this administration to slaughter tens of thousands of innocent horses, when we have real, sustainable alternatives available NOW. Our wild horses need a voice, and our government needs a solution – we ARE that voice, and we ARE that solution. Say NO to slaughter.

Sign our petition!

Madeleine Pickens
Saving America’s Mustangs

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

Horse Murderers Still at Large! We Need Your Help!

We are all still in shock and trying to process the deaths of so many majestic creatures. Many of these horses were well known to the staff and we occasionally manage a smile as we recall some of their antics. They were a playfully mischievous bunch – always trying to gain that edge!

They were our family and we deeply grieve their loss.

Your outpouring of love and support has really helped us through these trying times. It is truly heartening to know so many people share our passion for this important cause.

The search is supposedly under way for the ELKO HORSE MURDERERS but the silence is extremely upsetting. We are coming up on 2 weeks and have not even got a courtesy update. Our fear is that this is either not getting the attention it needs or is being swept under the rug.

We need your help!

Please call Jim Barbee, the Director of the Nevada Department of Agriculture, and demand he bring the ELKO HORSE MURDERERS to justice. He can be reached at 775-353-3619 or email the Deputy Director Lynn Hettrick at lhettrick@agri.nv.gov.

We can’t let this savage crime go unpunished. We must show them that the public will not stand for the heinous and premeditated murder of innocent creatures.

The authorities need to hear loud and clear that the public will not allow them to ignore the situation. To some it is no big deal, to others it is a GOOD thing, but to decent people it is a horrific crime that cries out for justice.

Please call and Email today!

How to Help

  1. Call Jim Barbee, Director of the Nevada Department of Agriculture and demand he bring the ELKO HORSE MURDERERS to justice 775-353-3619
  2. Email Deputy Director of the Nevada Department of Agriculture Lynn Hettrick at lhettrick@agn.nv.gov demanding justice for our horses
  3. Continue to spread the word of this atrocity and the $100,000 REWARD for the capture and conviction of these outlaws

Madeleine Pickens
Saving America’s Mustangs, 2683 Via De La Valle, G 313, Del Mar, CA 92014

Mustang Monument Prevented from Opening for 2016 Season

Wells, NV – February 10th, 2016 – Mustang Monument was started on a dream and personal goal of Madeleine Pickens to save the American Mustangs that once were numerous across the West. To this day Madeleine has saved hundreds of horses and spent a wealth of personal time and money to fight for this worthy cause. Mustang Monument Eco-resort is a way for Madeleine to share her passion for these animals with the public and spread the word of their plight.

As they say, the tall trees do catch the wind – and Madeleine is certainly a tall tree. In her conservation efforts with the mustangs she has drawn not only immense support for her cause, but also strong conflict. Her pleas, legal battles and rallies for the animals are ongoing with politicians in Washington, and more specifically with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and private cattle ranchers in the Nevada area. The publicized issues with the BLM of late in Oregon as well as Nevada have increased scrutiny on Madeleine and Mustang Monument. The persecution of Madeleine and her ongoing battles for the benefit of these animals has this year bled into a thorough review of the operations at Mustang Monument with additional permitting requirements. In essence, we are at a stalemate.

One of the key aspects of Mustang Monument is the ability to appreciate the vast open spaces, sparsely inhabited by the magnificent mustangs for which we named our eco-resort. Unfortunately, to further observe these wonderful creatures, it is necessary to move from one privately owned portion of our ranch to the other, over roads that transverse public lands. To do this, we must obtain permission from the BLM, permission they regularly provide to others for far more mundane purposes, such as hunting and merely off-roading. However, in our case (as in many other aspects of our efforts to protect our heritage), the BLM has seen fit to delay and obstruct the issuance of the necessary permit – claiming among other things that they have lost or misplaced important public records necessary to resolve some of these issues. As we have no indication that the BLM will “find” these documents, or otherwise resolve the issues to permit access, we regretfully cannot assure our guests the experience we wish them to have.

To all the supporters of Saving America’s Mustangs and Mustang Monument, we appreciate your support in the past and as we push forward through these trying times. Please know that even though the resort will not be taking guests, we will be looking after the herd of over 800 rescued mustangs as always. That said, we will prevail and these majestic symbols of the American West shall continue to be free.

Any queries on the above can be directed to Kristy deLange on kdelange@savingamericasmustangs.org or by phone on 858-759-5500 X242.


In 2005, a soldier in fatigues and a force called Katrina changed Madeleine Pickens forever.

Madeleine was not prepared to sit idly by and watch the devastation following Katrina unfold without getting involved somehow. In her headstrong way Madeleine motivated then husband T. Boone Pickens to go to Louisiana to witness the devastation first hand and to help load the first of the chartered planes with animals. The soldier in fatigues met them off the plane and asked about their purpose. Madeleine’s reply was simple. She was there to help the animals. It was then when the soldier broke down. He told the story of his rescue mission earlier in the day in New Orleans where a puppy had managed to take a spot in the rescue helicopter and sat happily wagging his tail – proud to have made it aboard. The soldier noticed the joy of the puppy and shouted out for others to take note amidst such sadness. The pilot however did not share the soldier’s opinion, and instead was clear in his order to make room for people and throw the puppy off. The man in fatigues had to do the unthinkable and place the puppy back in the contaminated floodwater…

Madeleine’s efforts to rescue the animals of Katrina included more than six aircraft filled with food, leashes, medicine, and transport crates. She organized a team of volunteers which flew over 800 dogs and cats out of Baton Rouge to California before reuniting many with their families again. The connections she made on the ground in Louisiana and in the following months immersed her into a world of people fighting for the rights of animals and protecting those creatures who cannot speak for themselves. It was late in 2005 when she heard of the horror that was befalling the American Mustang.

Again, Madeleine jumped to action and quickly made headway. In 2006 she met with Senator Harry Reid and Senator Dianne Feinstein and described her plans to start an eco-resort which works solely to benefit the Mustangs. Sen. Reid & Sen. Feinstein were supportive and asked Madeleine to go ahead and purchase the land, and then they would endorse the project. Madeleine purchased 900 square miles of land in Nevada. Henri Bisson, then head of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), was also in support and “sanctioned the project” at the Wild Horse and Burro meeting in Reno on 17 November 2008. Sadly, Henri Bisson resigned shortly thereafter and with his resignation came ongoing battles and stalling by our government and the BLM.

Madeleine’s mission to save the Wild Mustangs and preserve the history of America has spanned over 10 years, and to this day the program is viewed with contempt by the government that is bound to protect these animals, and met with unnecessary challenges because of ranchers and government offices that are benefitting from the destruction of these magnificent and peaceful creatures. One hundred years ago there were two million mustangs roaming free, and now there are approximately 30,000.

The timeline below illustrates milestones in the road which was travelled. It was not an easy path, nor the one with least resistance, and it has been expensive with costs to Madeleine exceeding $25 million dollars. However, she will continue to fight for these kind and gentle animals not to be caged or separated from their family, not to be placed in trucks and sent over international borders to be slaughtered, and not to have them chased, terrified, and suffering before slaughter all to end up on a plate.

  • 2005- Madeleine learns of Mustang Round Ups
  • Early 2006- Madeleine approaches Senators with her ideas
  • July 2006- Madeleine and then husband T. Boone Pickens testify before Congress to ban horse slaughter calling it “Un-American”. Press release can be found here:   http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/t-boone-pickens-takes-on-horse-slaughter-legendary-oilman-calls-horse-slaughter-un-american-56982582.html
  • September 2006- H.R. 503 passes the House 263 to 146. The vote statistics can be found at https://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/109-2006/h433
  • November 2008- Henri Bisson supported the Mustang Monument project at the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Meeting in Reno, NV
  • Throughout 2009 & 2010- various meetings and letters to Senators, Congressmen, Bureau of Land Management officials with data and research to support Mustang Monument as a way to save the horses as well as save the taxpayers money to move these animals from short term & long term holding facilities
  • May 2010- Madeleine hosts an event at The Smithsonian in Washington DC to raise awareness for Saving America’s Mustangs. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/madeleine-and-t-boone-pickens-celebrate-americas-heritage-at-the-smithsonian-national-museum-of-the-american-indian-94205584.html
  • January 2011- Mustang Monument & Saving America’s Mustangs had a float in the Rose Parade with Mustangs and also supported by Native Americans, Wounded Warriors and their service dogs alongside to bring national attention to the cause
  • 2012 onward- various visits with the BLM and government agencies to move forward with the plan including data and research from professionals. Three different law firms are on retainer to work through the various permitting and hoops that must be overcome
  • 2013 onward- Employed A PR Company and Sales Team to showcase Mustang Monument and the mustang conservation effort through tourism.
  • 2013, 2014, 2015- Worldwide travel to showcase the property and the story behind it
  • December 2014- BLM and local officials demand Madeleine have a recreation permit to take guests from one property to her adjoining property which extends over a small portion of public land. To this day, the permit still has not been issued.
  • 2014 & 2015- Funded visits from various journalists & photographers to assist in getting publicity for the Mustangs and the fight to save them.
  • October 2015- BLM answers our queries for our permits by saying “the paperwork was misplaced”. Lawyers refiled the paperwork again and we were told that other issues prevented them from looking at the papers regardless.
  • January 2016- The BLM added pressure to the operation and placed pressure on local government to get Madeleine to carry out work on water supply pipes in the midst of winter at a huge cost, which was complete. They still then held up permits.

Saving America’s Mustangs, 2683 Via De La Valle, G 313, Del Mar, CA 92014

Navajo Nation Reverses Position and Now Is against Horse Slaughtering

Black Mesa, AZ (September 16, 2013) – The Nohooká Dine’, Elders and Medicine People of the Dine’, unanimously approved a Resolution opposing any and all action that leads to the slaughter of horses. The Horse is sacred to the Dine’ and is a central part of our culture and tradition. The Resolution, approved on August 26th, states in part that “The Great Horse Nation is a part of the Great Covenant. As a supernatural being, it possesses incredible power. It is inextricably tied to our spiritual way of life and our cultural traditions. When our children are born our families look to the horse spirit to see what they have delivered to us. If we fail to honor the place of the horse in our spiritual way of life and in our cultural traditions, then we jeopardize the very cycle that renews the life of our people. The Horse must be given respect and honored for their sacred place within the Creation, as they possess the same fundamental right to Life as we, Five Finger Ones, do.”

This past week, a spokesman for the Navajo Nation administration affirmed this position. During an interview on the radio program Native American Calling, Communication Director Erny Zah stated that: “Slaughtering is not a solution. As the Navajo Nation we are against slaughtering of these horses.”(Airdate – Thursday, September 12, 2013.)

“This statement from the Navajo Nation administration is more aligned with who we are as Dine’ people,” stated Leland Grass of the Dine’ for Wild Horses. “We urge the Navajo Nation to formally adopt a moratorium on horse slaughtering and to only legally contract with horse buyers that agree not to sell horses for slaughter or not to slaughter the horses themselves.” The people of the Navajo Nation were encouraged by Zah’s statement. There has been great concern over past comments that have been made by Navajo Nation President, Ben Shelly. He once voiced concern that the horses were causing environmental damage. These claims appear to have been based on misinformation. We are encouraged to see a shift toward conscientious resource management. The amount of money that is currently being spent to round up the wild horses for slaughter is capable of feeding and watering those animals for years. Grass believes that the Navajo Nation “could use these animals to teach our children;, we can care for them; we can sell them to people and organizations that don’t want to torture them.”

The Nohooká Dine resolution urges the Navajo Nation to be mindful of the foundations of their cultural and spiritual way of life. It concludes by stating: “The Nohooká Dine’ strongly urges Navajo Nation President, Ben Shelly, The Navajo Nation Council, The Navajo Nation Judicial Branch, US Department of Interior, and US Department of Agriculture to stop the desecration and destruction of the Dine’ Way of Life and Spiritual Foundation by recklessly promoting and supporting the round-up and mass execution of our spiritual relative the Horse.

“We are sending the Resolution to all legislators in Washington, DC to show our support for the Horse and to urge them to pass the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, currently pending before Congress,” said Grass. “While it is important for protecting the Horse within the Navajo Nation, a national bill is critical to ensure there is no incentive for horses to be taken from our lands or elsewhere in the United States for slaughter.”

For more information, contact:
Leland Grass, sacred4s@hotmail.com

Saving America’s Mustangs

How the GAO Deceived Congress and Opened the Way for Horse Slaughter to Return

GAO report 11-228 is titled HORSE WELFARE Action Needed to Address Unintended Consequences from Cessation of Domestic Slaughter. It was issued in June of 2011.

This document has been the main claim to legitimacy of those who wish to bring horse slaughter back to the United States. It has been quoted by the national press, and referenced in virtually every political debate on the issue. It was even sighted as evidence in Valley Meats vs. the United States Department of Agriculture, and countless other documents.

But GAO-11-228 is completely devoid of supporting data and is constructed of fraudulent misrepresentation and hocus-pocus analysis stuck together with the unsubstantiated opinions of anonymous “officials”.

The report has been widely criticized since its release, but only recently has data surfaced to prove it is, in fact, fraudulent and intentionally designed to deceive Congress. The report’s inaccuracies begin with its title, and by the end of the first page the case for its deceit is sealed.

How the GAO deceived Congress about horse slaughter (VIDEO)


In 2006, Congress passed the agriculture budget with the “Ensign/Byrd” amendment that removed the funding for horse slaughter inspectors. The defunding was delayed by a conference committee until March, 2007, and then by court challenges. By the time the defunding was in place, all the US plants had already been shut down by state laws, but the defunding assured no new plants would open in the US.

In January of 2011, six months before the report was released, Charles Stenholm of the horse slaughter lobby firm Olsson, Frank and Weeda announced to a pro-slaughter conference in Las Vegas that the report would be favorable to them. This leak was first acknowledged and then refuted by the GAO.

In June, 2011 the report was finally issued and within months it had the desired impact. The Senate did not include the defunding language in its version of the agriculture budget. Since the House did have such language (the Moran Amendment), the matter was decided in conference committee. The vote was 3 to 1 in favor of stripping the language and restoring funding for inspectors. The three members voting to strip it were Senators Kohl and Blunt, and Representative Kingstoni. These were the very individuals who had requested the report!

Click Here for More Background on the GAO and full article.

By: John Holland, Equine Welfare Alliance

Check Out the New Saving America’s Mustangs Site

Official Wild Horse Report Comes Out on Wednesday; We Need Your Help TODAY

Dear Supporters & Friends,
We have asked you to voice your opinions over the last several years in support of America’s wild horses. This time marks a pinnacle in how the Wild Horse & Burro Program is going to move forward. If you haven’t taken action with us before, please let today be the time you do.

On Wednesday, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is going to release its report on the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wild Horse and Burro Program. The new Interior Secretary, Sally Jewell, has said that she’s waiting for this report to decide how the program should be handled going forward.

The BLM has paid for this report and it’s been clear from all sides waiting to read it that it will formulate the direction of every aspect of how our horses are managed from here on out. We hope that it is a positive step forward for our wild ones. We are uniting together, as always, against slaughter and against federal roundups. Please join us and voice your own opinions before it’s too late.

Madeleine Pickens & the Saving America’s Mustangs’ Foundation


Mailing Address:
Department of the Interior
c/o Secretary Sally Jewell
1849 C Street, N.W.
Washington DC 20240
Phone: (202) 208-3100
E-Mail: feedback@ios.doi.gov
Office of Communications: 202-208-3752

You can also tweet Secretary Sally Jewell on Twitter:
(please use #SAVEAMERICASMUSTANGS when tweeting)

Saving America’s Mustangs
2683 Via De La Valle G313
Del Mar, CA 92014

Check out the new Mustang Monument website:

Editorial: Humane End for Horses Not Really Goal of Slaughter Legislation

3/19/2013 – In Oklahoma, it appears, being connected to a family business can qualify a legislator as someone with special expertise to propose legislation that would benefit that business.

At least that’s the view of Skye McNiel, R-Bristow, who has proposed legislation that would allow horse slaughter in Oklahoma. She’s something of an expert on the business, because her family operates the largest horse auction house in the state.

She admits that legalized horse slaughter in Oklahoma could mean financial gain for her grandparents’ auction house, which is managed by her family. She used to work there, too, but now just helps out occasionally.

But other horse auctioneers also would benefit from horse slaughter, so that makes it OK for her to be proposing this legislation, she contends.

“It’s no different from an attorney running a tort reform bill or a pharmacist running a pharmacy bill,” McNiel said. “I’m from rural Oklahoma, and I run rural legislation. I mean, who better to understand policy than somebody who lives it every day?”

Well, it’s one thing to understand an issue from a firsthand perspective and propose legislation to address it. It’s quite another for one’s family members to profit from the legislation proposed.

tulsa163But the biggest problem with House Bill 1999 isn’t that McNiel’s family members might benefit from it. The biggest problem is that this effort isn’t really about a humane death for unwanted horses. It’s really about money, pure and simple.

The pro-slaughter forces insist that a slaughterhouse is the best way to deal with growing numbers of abandoned, neglected horses. Really? Then why does industry data show that the vast majority of American horses now going to foreign slaughterhouses are healthy and relatively young? Is it perhaps because a younger, healthier horse fetches more money than a sickly old one?

The argument that irresponsible horse owners should be allowed to profit off their bad behavior just doesn’t sell. Let’s at least be honest about what’s going on: This is about making money.

By Tulsa World’s Editorials Writers


Oklahoma has 2 bills that have passed committee which allow for the slaughter of horses, and possibly wild mustangs, in the state. Oklahoma House Bill HB 1999 allows for horse slaughterhouses to open up and slaughter our wonderful horses for human consumption.

Also, Senate Bill SB 735 makes it legal to have and export horse meat for human consumption. NO PUBLIC input has been allowed and they have both passed the committee with the potential to be voted into law AT ANY TIME.

Here is the contact form to write to the Oklahoma Governor, Mary Fallin, and tell her you do NOT support this!


Check out the new Mustang Monument website:

Saving America’s Mustangs | 2683 Via De La Valle, G 313 | Del Mar | CA | 92014

Saving America’s Mustangs Endorses Appointment of Rep. Grijalva as New Secretary of the Interior

Congressman Raul Grijalva’s name is being floated as a possible appointment to be the next Secretary of the Interior, and Saving America’s Mustangs thinks he is the best choice to lead this important federal agency. It would be a bold pick that would dramatically change how our federal government treats our federal lands. Will you join with other protectors of our environment and ask President Obama to Appoint Raul Grijalva as Secretary of the Interior?

Raul Grijalva’s leadership on the House Natural Resources Committee has demonstrated how he is a champion of clean air, clean water, renewable energy, comprehensive mining reform and environmental conservation. He is the type of bold leader that we need at the Department of the Interior. We need his leadership to better conserve our public lands for generations to come. His appointment will send a strong signal to special interest groups and well-funded lobbyists: the days of influencing our environment with cronyism and fat checks are over. TAKE ACTION here today.

Saving America’s Mustangs | 2683 Via De La Valle, G 313 | Del Mar | CA | 92014

Urge Support for an Amendment to Protect America’s Horses

Dear Humanitarian:
The House Appropriations Committee is poised to decide whether or not to block an unnecessary expansion of the federal government, save taxpayer dollars, and – of particular interest to humanitarians – protect horses from being cruelly slaughtered for human consumption.

As soon as next week, the House Appropriations Committee may consider the FY13 Agriculture Appropriations bill. Last year the Committee approved an amendment sponsored by Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) that prevented tax dollars from being used to fund inspections of horse slaughter facilities. This bipartisan language had been included in every Agriculture Appropriations bill since 2005, until three legislators quietly removed it behind closed doors late last year. Without this important provision, foreign-owned companies will be able to reestablish horse slaughter in the United States at the expense of taxpayers, food safety, and the welfare of horses. In fact, representatives of such companies are already making rounds in the Midwest looking for a plant location.

Continue reading Urge Support for an Amendment to Protect America’s Horses