BATTLE MOUNTAIN – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Battle Mountain District, Tonopah Field Office has issued the Decision Record for the Final Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Bullfrog Herd Management Area (HMA) Gather Plan. The decision is for the BLM to gather and remove up to 75 wild burros from in and around the HMA to achieve a post-gather population of approximately 120 wild burros. The Appropriate Management Level (AML) range for the HMA is 58 – 91 wild burros. The proposed gather area surrounds the town of Beatty, Nev., in Nye County. The gather will tentatively begin on March 5, 2012 and run for approximately 2 to 7 days.
The BLM estimates there are currently 195 wild burros within and outside the HMA. The proposed gather is needed to remove excess wild burros to help prevent deterioration of the range, achieve and maintain a thriving natural ecological balance, achieve and maintain healthy, viable wild burro populations, protect habitat for threatened desert tortoise and sensitive Amargosa toad, and decrease or eliminate public safety concerns for the citizens of Beatty and travelers along the Highway 95 corridor running through the HMA.
A helicopter will be used to gather the wild burros and they will be transported to the Ridgecrest Holding Facility by motorized vehicles. The use of helicopters, which is authorized by the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, has proven to be the safest and most practical means for gathering excess wild burros.
Wild burros removed from the range will be offered for adoption to qualified individuals through the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program. An on-site adoption will be held on March 7 from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m. All interested adopters must be pre-approved and have their corrals inspected before the day of the adoption. Information for this adoption, as well as how to get approved as an adopter, is posted on the website listed below or you can call Shawna Richardson, Wild Horse and Burro Specialist at 775-. Un-adopted wild burros will be placed in long-term pastures where they will be humanely cared for, and will retain their “wild” status and protection under the 1971 law. The BLM does not sell or send any burros to slaughter.
The gather and impacts are described and analyzed in the Bullfrog Gather Plan Final EA. The EA, Decision Record, associated documents, maps and other information about the Bullfrog HMA is posted on the BLM Battle Mountain website athttp://www.blm.gov/nv/st/en/fo/battle_mountain_field.html.
Because of the short duration of the Bullfrog Wild Burro gather, there will not be an official public viewing day but visitors are welcome to contact Dorothy Harvey, Public Affairs Officer, at 775-635-3781 to arrange to visit the gather.
The BLM also will provide updates and information at the same web address on a regular basis throughout the course of the gather. For more information, please call Dustin Hollowell, Wild Horse and Burro Specialist, Tonopah Field Office at 775-482-7847.