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Tuscarora wild horse gather preliminary environmental assessment available for public comment



ELKO – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Elko District, Tuscarora Field Office is proposing to remove about 1,000 excess wild horses in the Owyhee, Rock Creek and Little Humboldt herd management areas (HMAs) to bring the number of wild horses in the three allotments to the appropriate management level of about 440 animals. The herd management areas are in Elko County, about 90 miles northwest of Elko, Nev.  The gather is expected to begin in July.

The proposal and associated impacts are described and analyzed in the Owyhee, Rock Creek and Little Humboldt Herd Management Areas Gather Plan and Environmental Assessment (EA). The BLM would appreciate receiving substantive comments on the EA by May 21, 2010. Comments received during the public review period will be analyzed and considered as part of the decision-making process.

The proposed gather is needed to achieve and maintain the established appropriate management levels (AMLs); remove any wild horses permanently residing outside areas designated for management; and reduce potential impacts to Lahontan cutthroat trout habitat within the Little Humboldt HMA.  The proposed gather also would prevent further range deterioration resulting from the current overpopulation of wild horses within the areas.

The BLM proposal is to gather about 1,400 animals and remove about 1,000 excess animals. Of the remaining 400 gathered animals the BLM would conduct fertility control measures on mares and/or adjust the sex ratios of the gathered animals to be returned to the HMAs to 60 percent male/40 percent female ratios.

On the Owyhee HMA, the BLM would remove excess wild horses to the lower limit of AML, which is about 140 animals, apply fertility control to the mares to be released and/or adjust to a 60 percent male/40 percent female ratio for the horses to be released back to the HMA.  Of the wild horses gathered within the Rock Creek and Little Humboldt HMAs, weanlings to four-year-old mares would be removed, fertility control would be applied to mares to be released, and any wild horses residing outside the HMA boundaries would be removed.

The EA may be reviewed online at: http://www.blm.gov/nv/st/en/fo/elko_field_office.html

Questions and written comments should be mailed to Dave Overcast, Tuscarora Field Manager, Tuscarora Field Office, BLM Elko District Office, 3900 Idaho Street, Elko, NV 89801, or submitted by e-mail to [email protected].

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available.

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