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BLM begins Triple B, Maverick-Medicine, and Antelope Valley Herd Management Areas Wild Horse Gather



Public encouraged to attend, especially on Saturdays

Ely, Nev. – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Elko District, Wells Field Office; and BLM Ely District, Egan Field Office will initiate the Triple B, Maverick-Medicine, and Antelope Valley Herd Management Areas (HMAs) Wild Horse Gather on or about Thursday, July 7, 2011, to gather and remove approximately 1,726 excess wild horses from in and around the HMAs, and the Cherry Springs Wild Horse Territory (WHT), located about 30 miles northwest of Ely and 70 miles southeast of Elko, Nev.

Any horses gathered above targeted removal numbers will be released back to the HMAs and WHT so that the remaining population is within appropriate management level (AML).  The AML for the Triple B HMA is 250-518 wild horses; the AML for the Maverick-Medicine HMA is 166-276 wild horses; the AML for the Antelope Valley HMA west of U.S. Highway 93 is 16-27 wild horses; and the AML for the Cherry Springs WHT is 40-68 wild horses.

Any gathered mares released back to the range will be vaccinated with the PZP-22 (Porcine Zona Pellucida) fertility control vaccine. Additionally, sex ratios of gathered animals to be returned to the HMAs may be adjusted to achieve an approximately 60 percent male/40 percent female ratio.

The gather, removal and fertility control are intended to slow wild horse population growth, maintain population size within the appropriate management levels necessary to achieve a thriving natural ecological balance on the public lands and to extend the time before another gather to remove excess wild horses would be needed.

There will be no closure of the public lands and therefore, public lands within the HMAs and WHT will be open to the public during the gather operations, subject to necessary safety restrictions.   The public is welcome to attend the gather, and is encouraged to attend on Saturdays, when the media and public will have additional interpretive opportunities and can interact with staff.  The BLM has tentatively scheduled the dates of July 9, 16, 23 and 30; and Aug. 6, 13 and 20.  The dates are subject to change depending upon weather and gather operations, and the public is encouraged to check the gather hotline nightly (775-289-1880) for changes in the schedule.  For more information or to sign up, call Tiffany Trodahl, BLM Egan Field Office resource assistant, at (775) 289-1892.  The BLM will also regularly post gather information on its Website at: www.blm.gov/nv/st/en/fo/ely_field_office.html.

The gather will be conducted in close coordination with the Nevada Department of Agriculture’s (NDOA) Brands Division.  The NDOA brand inspectors will verify that all gathered animals are wild horses and burros as defined by the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.  Once verified, the brand inspector will provide the BLM a certificate to transport the animals.

Without this cooperation and coordination, the BLM would not be able to remove the excess wild horses and burros which, if not removed in a timely manner, would result in degradation of our native rangelands.  The NDOA also may take jurisdiction of any estray, branded or abandoned domestic horse(s) under the State of Nevada estray laws.

The gathered animals will be transported to either the National Wild Horse and Burro Center at Palomino Valley (PVC), in Reno, Nev.;Gunnison Correctional Facility in Gunnison, Utah; or the Delta Wild Horse Corrals in Delta City, Utah, where they will be prepared for the BLM adoption program or for long-term holding.    Wild horses for which there is no adoption demand will be placed in long-term pastures where they will be humanely cared for and retain their “wild” status and protection under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.  The BLM does not sell or send any horses to slaughter.

For more information, contact Chris Hanefeld, BLM Ely District public affairs specialist, at (775) 289-1842 or [email protected].

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