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BLM to apply fertility control on mares



blm_logo-300x261-8298833-7152736The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) gathered 103 wild horses in the Rock Creek Herd Management Area (HMA) without incident or injury on Thursday, July 22.  The animals gathered included 31 studs, 58 mares and 14 foals.  The Rock Creek gather will continue on Friday.  The BLM will apply fertility control on the mares gathered from the HMA.  Once treated, the mares will be released back into the HMA.  The BLM also plans to adjust the sex ratio of animals released back to the HMA to 60 percent studs and 40 percent mares.

“The positive results of applying fertility control and adjusting the sex ratios will be to slow population growth and help us maintain population size within appropriate management levels in the HMA,” said Ron Wenker, BLM Nevada State Director.  “These actions also will extend the time before another gather will be required to remove excess wild horses.”

The BLM contractor conducted gather operations from 6:10 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  Temperatures ranged from 61 to 82 degrees, resulting in minimal stress on the horses from heat.

“The Rock Creek horses we gathered are in much better condition than those in the Owyhee HMA because the lack of water is not a critical issue,” added Wenker.  “The BLM and the gather contractor will use the same care, skill and compassion to humanely gather these animals as was used to save the Owyhee horses.”

The BLM anticipates removing approximately 425 excess wild horses that have moved outside the Rock Creek HMA.  These animals are causing considerable impacts to rangeland resources on public and adjacent private lands, as well as impacts to habitat for the Lahontan cutthroat trout.

The excess wild horses will be shipped either to the Gunnison Prison Wild Horse Training Facility at the Central Utah Correctional Facility, or the Palomino Valley Center near Sparks, Nev.  During the next several months all the animals will be closely monitored, provided good feed, water and veterinarian care as needed.

The animals will be wormed, vaccinated, and freeze marked, and all 12 month and older studs will be gelded.  Once the wild horses have fully recovered, they will be made available for adoption to qualified applicants through the BLM’s Adopt-A-Wild Horse or Burro Program.  The public may visit the BLM’s website at www.blm.gov for more information about adopting a wild horse or burro.

The Tuscarora gather area encompasses the Owyhee, Rock Creek, and Little Humboldt HMAs.  The BLM concluded emergency rescue gather operation in the Owyhee HMA on Tuesday, July 20.

As more information becomes available it will be posted at the website:  http://www.blm.gov/nv/st/en/fo/elko_field_office.html.  For further comments and questions, the public may call 1-866-468-7826.

The BLM manages more land – more than 245 million acres – than any other Federal agency.  This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska.  The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation.  The BLM’s multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.  The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.

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