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We have some very bad news to deliver today. We just received word that the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has denied our motion for an injunction to block the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) from rounding up more than 800 wild horses in Wyoming.
Despite the herculean efforts of our attorneys and coalition partners, we were not able to stop the roundup. However, it’s important to remember that the Court of Appeals simply issued a one sentence cursory and did not address any of the BLM’s blatant legal violations. While disappointing, the court’s ruling is not unexpected, because the standards for obtaining an emergency injunction are extremely high and the cards are generally stacked against us
So many of you have pitched in to support our efforts to defend Wyoming’s wild horses in federal court and we can assure you that the merits of our case remain very strong. While we cannot stop the roundup, we can pursue our lawsuit with the goal of establishing a precedent that will prevent BLM from running roughshod over public opinion and federal law in the future and with the hope of obtaining some relief for the Wyoming wild horses, including possibly forcing BLM to return to the range some of the horses captured during the roundup.
Meanwhile, we need to protest this assault on Wyoming’s wild horses loud and clear. Here are two things that you can do right now:
1. Tweet: @SecretaryJewell Public lands 4 all Americans: Stop WY wild horse wipeout. #justice4mustangs
Public lands 4 all Americans: Stop WY wild horse wipeout. #justice4mustangs
2. Post this message below (just by copying and pasting) on the Interior Department’s Facebook page:
Manage public lands for all Americans. Stop the Wyoming wild horse wipeout. #justice4mustangs
Tomorrow we’ll send another email asking you to call the Interior Department.
These things take just moments of your time, but together we can create a lasting impression on the minds of policy makers that citizens from all walks of life are taking a stand against the injustice our wild horses and burros are suffering at the hands of the ranchers and the BLM.
Let’s do this,
– The AWHPC Team
Winners of the Ariat “Champions Win A Grant” Program Announced
Thanks to Ariat International and the dedication of three volunteers in the Champion Equine Service program, three well-deserving charities devoted to horse welfare and the horse-human bond have received grants to put towards their programs. Heroes on Horseback, which aids children with mental and physical disabilities through equine therapy, was awarded $2,500. Free Rein Therapeutic Riding received $1,500. Finally, Roanoke Valley Horse Rescue, which provides treatment, rehabilitation, and adoption services for horses that have been abandoned or abused, was given $1,000.
Sales Sector Increases Support for TAA
The Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) reports that it has received significantly increased support from buyers and consignors at North American Thoroughbred auctions, with voluntary contributions totaling more than a quarter million dollars. Sales revenue is one element of TAA’s goal to establish a broad-based, automatic funding mechanism at every point in a Thoroughbred’s life. “We are grateful to see a growing number of buyers and consignors equally invested in promoting and supporting our mission,” said TAA Executive Director, James Hastie.
Horses of a Different Color
Gulfstream Park Racing & Casino has announced Horses of a Different Color, a public art event that will take place at Gulfstream Park early next year. Two dozen life-sized fiberglass horses, hand painted by local and national artists, will be displayed throughout Gulfstream Park and auctioned off at select events over the course of the 2015 racing year. Proceeds will go to several charities, including the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance.
Teen Rider Competes Rescue Horse at International Event
Last month, novice teen rider, Taylor Long, and her rescue horse, Heartbreaker, competed against over 1,000 competitors at the prestigious National Barrel Horse Association Youth World Championships. When Long received Heartbreaker two years ago, he weighed only 200 pounds and was incredibly skittish. But with time and patience, Long has given her diamond in the rough the opportunity to shine on the international stage.
Heart of Horse Sense Helps Children and Veterans
Shannon Knapp, founder of Heart of Horse Sense, has been busy conducting free equine therapy for at-risk children and veterans throughout the summer. Participants get to groom and feed the horses and, if they want to, ride. In addition, all the horses at Heart of Horse Sense have been rescued and rehabilitated. “They all have a story,” Knapp says. “A lot like out clients. And they need a lot of love.”
Paso Robles Group Pairs Kids and Horses in Need
Since 2003, the Equine Alliance Youth Foundation has paired local youth–specifically those who have experienced neglect, physical and emotional abuse, and abandonment–with horses to train and care for. The majority of the 12 horses who live on the small ranch are rescues who have also suffered abuse and neglect. Together, the kids and the horses who participate in the program learn trust and gain self-confidence. “When kids and horses work together, the youth begin to show affection, empathy, gain understanding and self-control,” said the program’s executive director, Lori Harmon.
New Mexico Program Allows Inmates to Help Horses
A new rehabilitation program launched by the New Mexico Department of Corrections lets prisoners at the Springer Correctional Center care for rescued horses. Through the program, inmates benefit from the soothing company of their equine partners, while the previously neglected or abused horses benefit from daily care and attention. And while the goal of the program is to teach inmates personal and professional skills that could lead to jobs after their release, it also aims to rehabilitate and re-home each horse.
A Home for Every Horse Announces Second “Equine Comeback Challenge”
A Home for Every Horse (AHFEH) will host its second Equine Comeback Challenge at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in October. AHFEH has given 10 trainers 90 days to work with their assigned rescue horses in preparation for the showcase. Following the event, each horse will be listed on Equine.com and sold privately through their trainers to approved homes. “With a competition like the Equine Comeback Challenge, rescue horses are given that much-needed opportunity to showcase their abilities and potential. Ninety days is all many of these horses need to find their forever home,” said Mariah Hammerschmidt, Project Coordinator for AHFEH.
TheHorse.com Rescue Poll
In a recent poll, TheHorse.com asked their readers: “Have you ever rescued a horse?”
Of the 575 total respondents, 450 (78%) reported that they had. Respondents also left encouraging comments about their experiences rescuing horses and offered advice to those interested in the process.
Rescue Group Prepares for Microchipping Clinic
In September, Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue, in conjuction with the Equine Rescue Network (ERN), will host its first microchipping clinic. After Hurricane Katrina, microchipping gained popularity among horse owners, but more recently it has caught on with the equine rescue community. ERN volunteers scan horses at auctions and, if a microchip is found, contact the registered owner of the horse. In addition, the ERN hosts a 24-hour hotline and Facebook page to connect owners with horses who have been lost or stolen. Dr. Stacey Golub, founder of Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue, predicts that microchipping will become the norm with horse owners as they begin to see “the numerous benefits and the potential ‘safety net’ protection it offers as more at-risk horses are scanned.”
Hay Assistance Program in California
Because of the damage caused by the drought in the West, SAFER North Counties Horse Rescue, a nonprofit organization dedicated to finding homes for displaced horses and educating the public concerning horse welfare, is offering temporary assistance to horse owners who cannot currently afford to feed their horses.
Dear friends of the horses and burros,
I have been invited to audition for a casting call for a reality TV show about kids who are making a difference in the world! Now I need your help to show producers we have an audience of people who want to see kids making a positive difference and support our efforts to save horses and burros.
I think that this couldn’t have come at a more crucial time because of what is happening to the burros! We have an opportunity right now to reach in the hearts and homes of America and to expose the sinister plans of the organizations charged with protecting our wild horses and burros.
Every click of support (whether watching, sharing, or donating) not only encourages our youth but also shows producers that America wants to see kids with horses and the differences they make for each other.
Here’s how you can help us help the burros (and horses).
– Sign (the petition is to TV producers showing your support for kids and horses and taking a stand against sending burros to Guatemala)
– Give (no amount is to small or too great)
Its thanks to you that we are still going strong and making noise for horses! Its thanks to you that myself and my friends have a brighter future! Its thanks to you that the voiceless equines have a chance to be heard.
Thank you to everyone that is helping us continue our mission.
Dear Friends of the Horses and Burros,
This newsletter is unlike any we’ve sent. I hope you enjoy this photo-journal of our weekend. We received a few emails in response to our last letter that pointed out the need for positive updates. We hope that hearing all the good these kids have done over the weekend will encourage you to continue supporting us on our journey. Please take heart and be encouraged – these children are our future and they care for the horses and burros!
Read the full entry here.
We are loading up the car as you read this, heading out for the “Wild Horse Faire” festivities. I get to be on a parade float! There’s a pancake breakfast, a parade, and at the end of the day there is a benefit concert too – I do hope you will come say hi and celebrate the horses with us tomorrow.
But my heart is very heavy today. I am overwhelmed by all the sadness the horses are facing. Sometimes, I feel like its hard to have a good time, knowing how much they suffer.
We have been marching in the advocacy ranks for years now and we have seen many promises come and go…but never have we seen so many horses in such great distress.
30 mustangs stolen in Colorado
75 mustangs dead in Kansas
800 mustangs scheduled to be removed in Wyoming
3000 corralled mustangs and burros without shelter Nevada
Its alarming! This article by Steven Tendo of The Garden City Telegram is a must read – the photos, and the comments validate our concerns.
They keep bringing more and more horses in but they had half as many adoption events this year as last year! How can the BLM expect to find homes for horses if they don’t have adoption events? They spend a lot of money on promotional marketing items about the adoptions. Pens, posters, and magnets are meaningless without the events to back them up.
So, you can understand another reason why I am kind of blue today, after working so hard on raising awareness about adopting the wonderful mustangs and burros this year I feel like I had a bad lab partner and got an “F.”
I will hold my head high at the parade. We will continue to spread the word about adoptions. We will continue to get our friends involved and to celebrate our efforts and achievements. As long as you are with us, we will keep marching on.
Urgent donations will be used on our trip as we travel our great state. With your help, I’ve already traveled 3,500 miles in 2014 for horses and I’d travel a million more if it means saving them. How many stops we are able to make on this tour depends on help from our supporters like you.
This painting is by my friend young wild horse advocate Yerazel. We are raffling it off to help raise money for YEA. When I am in Northern Nevada collecting petition signatures this week I hope I will get to see Yerazel and her sister Yerani again. Every dollar gets an entry into the raffle and everyone who donated this month is already entered! Thank you so much for your help.
The winner will be announced August 25th. We have a very important urgent messages to deliver to the BLM Advisory Board on that day.
I don’t know if I will be able to attend in person, but here is my open letter to the BLM and I have something more to say than what is written below but we will all have to wait until that day to find out what!
It’s something that no one else has covered but that you have made possible for me to uncover through researching things we care about. You make it possible for us to direct our attention in areas that are very important for kids.
The BLM (Bureau of Land Management) wants your new and unique comments. Here are the email addresses for the advisory board or click here to email Joan Sewing your own comments.
This year we have introduced youth to domestic and wild horses and burros, attended a roundup, attended both BLM advisory board meetings, sponsored petition campaigns, raised awareness though public platforms and media outreach , inspired adoptions, and more all thanks to our friends and supporters like you. Thanks for making this possible and a special thanks to our monthly partners. Donations will be used for our urgent travel needs and to continue our mission.
On July 18, 2014, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced that it would bypass the National Environmental Policy Act and the requirements of its own land use plans to roundup nearly 1,000 wild horses from the Great Divide Basin, Adobe Town and Salt Wells Herd Management Areas (HMAs) in Wyoming. The proposed roundup is Step #2 in the agency’s devastating plan to eliminate wild horses from two million acres of land known as the Wyoming Checkerboard in the southwestern part of the state.
The BLM is taking this action solely to appease the Rock Springs Grazing Association (RSGA), whose members profit from taxpayer subsidized livestock grazing on the public lands where wild horses live. Tens of thousands of citizens have submitted comment letters opposing the BLM’s plan to wipeout wild horses from the Wyoming Checkerboard. Instead of listening to the public, the BLM is marching to the orders of a for-profit grazing association…. and sticking taxpayers with the bill for millions of dollars in tax subsidies for RSGA members as well as the costs to roundup, remove and stockpile wild horses.
Take A Stand For American Taxpayers And Our Wild Horses Today.
Please sign and share the “Gimme Shelter” petition to ask BLM to provide adequate shelter to wild mustangs and burros.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is requesting public comments on the renewal of several grazing permits for livestock allotments within the Twin Peaks Herd Management Area (HMA), home to the largest wild horse population remaining in California. The BLM wants to hear from citizens about potential issues and conflicts with these permit renewals.
Now is the time to tell the BLM that its practice of allocating the majority of forage resources in designated HMAs to privately owned livestock instead of to federally protected wild horses and burros is an area of conflict that must come to an end. Please tell the BLM that the American public overwhelming supports protecting wild horses and burros, and these animals must be given a fairer share of resources on the lands specifically designated for their use. Our public lands must be managed for all Americans!
Click here to take action.
Many of you know that I lost my father when I was 4 years old. I think of him every day but especially today. I think he would be especially proud of me this week and I hope you are too!
I stopped by the Governor’s office and I was shocked to find that he has burro-art in front of his Las Vegas office. The receptionist was very nice and she reminded me to also send the request for a “Burro Day” proclamation online and also to request an audience with Gov. Brian Sandoval. I hope to hear back from his office soon.
Also, I couldn’t believe it myself how big of a deal it was to finally file the Wild Horse and Burro Initiative with the Secretary of State Ross Miller. This is what I have been working towards since I was 9 years old – an official petition! My goal is 110,000 signatures and then the petition will appear on Nevada’s 2016 ballot!
I cannot do this without your help. Time is of the essence. To meet my goal I need to collect almost 1000 signatures a day and I have to do it the old-fashioned way – in ink and in-person, by registered Nevada voters.
Thank you for your help. If you are over 18, live in Nevada, and you can help collect signatures please contact us. If you don’t live in Nevada and you still want to show your support please give today.
Do you want to bring AMERICAN MUSTANG The Movie to your town this summer? With the help of our friends at Tugg, Inc., we can bring the film to you!
Tugg is a crowd-sourcing tool that helps bring independent films to areas where there is a demand for screenings. With Tugg’s help, AMERICAN MUSTANG has already sold out one screening in Carson City, NV! In addition, screenings are pending in Georgia and Florida, and plans are in the works to bring the film to more than a dozen cities around the country!
And we can bring AMERICAN MUSTANG to your city, too. You can now request a screening date between July and September.
Request a theater in your city by becoming a “Promoter” with Tugg. Don’t worry, “Promoter” just means that you’re our person on the ground in your city. You are the primary contact, but not in any way financially responsible. A contact like you, who knows your city and local groups, is important as multiple screenings are planned around the country.
Fill out an Event Request form by clicking on “At a Theater” here:http://www.tugg.com/titles/american-mustang
Once you choose the theater, Tugg will handle the logistics to get your theater confirmed. Once the theater is confirmed by Tugg, with a date and time, AWHPC and the AMERICAN MUSTANG team will help you invite your friends, members of your community, and others who are passionate about wild horses. Then sit back, and enjoy the show.
In May, the House and Senate Appropriations committees reinstated a defacto ban on U.S. horse slaughter by including a provision to defund USDA horse slaughter inspections in their pending FY15 Agriculture Appropriations bills.
Now, in a last minute attempt to circumvent the ban, Congressman Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) has just offered an amendment to reinstate horse slaughter plant inspections. This amendment may be voted on next week by the full House of Representatives.
We must stop this horse slaughter amendment. Please take one minute to contact your Congressperson today!
Make sure your representatives in Congress have signed our Keep Wild Horses Wild Pledge. Since you’re a constituent, we’re hoping you can send them an email to request that they sign, because wild horses need their support now more than ever.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is out of money and holding space and cannot round up more horses from the wild. But drought and widespread livestock grazing are creating a crisis, and ranchers and their allies in Congress are lining up against wild horses. They’re pushing the BLM to shoot horses on the range and sell those stockpiled in holding facilities “without restriction,” which is code for slaughter.
We, the grassroots army of citizens who care about America’s mustangs and burros, are the only thing standing between these national icons and tragedy both on and off the range. It’s critically important that we line up our own support in Congress for safe and sustainable reforms.
By signing the pledge, members of Congress agree to oppose any effort to slaughter wild horses and support efforts to manage wild horses in the wild, where they belong. This should be a no brainer.
Please make sure your representatives know where you stand on this issue and ask them to stand with you by signing the Keep Wild Horses Wild Pledge.
Thousands of wild horse supporters like you have asked their representatives in Washington to sign our “Keep Wild Horses Wild Pledge.”
With the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) own managers saying the roundup program is on the verge of “financial insolvency,” the agency is getting desperate for solutions and wild horses could be running out of time.
We need our members of Congress to take a stand against slaughter and for alternatives to roundups. By signing the pledge, they will do just that.
It’s time to hold the BLM accountable for its mistreatment of our iconic wild horses and burros and the misuse of our tax dollars. Please ask your representative and Senators to sign the pledge today.
It was only a year ago that I adopted Rocky and he started serving as our ambassador at YEA! and for such a little guy, he sure has inspired a LOT of love!
The reason why we are so anxious to find adopters for all the BLM horses is because of the #MustangExodus which we began in January. We set a deadline to find adopters for all the horses and burros by April.
Since my last post we have reduced the number of adopters we want to find because many of the horses in long-term holding are not available for adoption. That means that once they go to long-term holding they have reached a “point of no return.”
There are horses dying in holding. Some of the reports are disturbing with causes of death such as “unknown” and “broken neck.” That is the urgency. I don’t want anymore horses to die in holding pens.
Last update I mentioned an organization with ranching ties (NACO) that is asking the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) here in Nevada to destroy many wild horses and burros. Click here for more information on who is proposing mass destruction of horses and which advocates have filed to intervene follow.
So far we have 50 adopters; our goal is now 5,750.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Elko District is revising its Drought Management Plan and has opened a public review period. We need your help to tell the agency to protect wild horses and burros during this time of severe drought.
Despite the record-breaking drought, the BLM is not making significant reductions in livestock grazing levels on our depleted public lands, including those within wild horse and burro Herd Management Areas (HMAs). Please take a moment to urge the agency to include in its drought management plan steps to significantly reduce or eliminate livestock grazing in HMAs in order to ensure that federally-protected wild horses and burros have the forage and water they need to survive.
Today we went to court to defend Nevada’s wild horses and burros from a legal assault by ranchers who want these national icons removed from public lands and sold for slaughter.
We seek to intervene in a lawsuit filed against the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) by the Nevada Association of Counties and the Nevada Farm Bureau on behalf of ranchers who enjoy cheap, taxpayer-subsidized livestock grazing on public lands where wild horses graze.
These ranchers want to clear BLM holding pens — where 50,000 mustangs and burros are stockpiled — by opening their gates to slaughter kill buyers and then go out and round up thousands more wild horses.
Make no mistake; the BLM is on the side of the ranchers. With holding space filling up and no funds for roundups, the agency is getting desperate. It already got away with selling 1,700 wild horses to a known kill buyer, Tom Davis, with no consequence.
The timing could not be more critical. Last week, the Associated Press obtained an internal BLM memo detailing a plan for an “aggressive” sales program with “reduced” checks to find out where the horses end up. This is a backdoor slaughter program that will end in suffering, terror and death for our iconic wild horses and burros.
With the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) holding space and budget maxed out, 2014 is a dangerous year for America’s wild horses and burros.
This is why we’re embarking on a new effort to pressure more members of Congress to stand with us in our fight to Keep Wild Horses Wild.
We’re taking the first step today by announcing the “Keep Wild Horses Wild Pledge.” By signing the pledge, members of Congress agree to oppose any initiative to slaughter federally-protected wild horses and burros and support the implementation of reforms recommended in the National Academy of Sciences report.
Common sense, right?
With your help, we’ll expand support for our movement in the halls of Congress and give the horses the protection they need at this perilous moment.
The timing could not be more critical. The BLM’s allies in the ranching industry have already begun to make moves to open the gates of long term holding facilities – where 50,000 wild horses and burros are stockpiled – to slaughter kill buyers.
Visit the American Wild Horse Preservation to find out more about their work.
A Home for Every Horse (AHFEH) is excited to announce its first showcase event, the 2014 Equine Comeback Challenge. AHFEH will team 10 horses and 10 local trainers for 60 days to prepare for a unique competition at the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo in Denver, Colorado, March 7-9. Following the 60-day training period, trainers and their rescue horses will compete in a Ranch Horse Versatility class and each will be given an additional two minutes to showcase the work they have done. At the end of the event the rescue horses will be sold privately by each trainer. All horses will be provided a brand new winter blanket from WeatherBeeta.
The rescue horses selected for this event include horses from top Colorado rescues including Dankai Animal Sanctuary, Far View Horse Rescue, Triple Acres Horse Rescue, and Mountain Valley Horse Rescue. Horses range from ages 5 to 15 and are all unbroken under saddle at the beginning of the program.
Trainers from around Colorado have signed up to participate in the event in an effort to provide foundation training, and subsequently the opportunity for these horses in need to receive a new job and a chance at a forever home. With 30 bales of hay provided by Tractor Supply Company and three bags of grain provided by Purina Animal Nutrition, the trainers of the Equine Comeback Challenge embark on a rewarding 60-day journey with their rescue horse.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is seeking public comments on plans in Idaho and Utah to protect sage grouse habitat. The plans will impact wild horses in 19 Herd Management Areas (HMAs) in Utah and six HMAs in Idaho – including the Challis Mountains HMA, home to the gorgeous horses pictured at left in a photo by Elissa Kline. The BLM hopes to avert the federal listing of the sage grouse as endangered, thus protecting the industries – livestock grazing, energy extraction and commercial development – that are destroying the sagebrush habitat on which the sage grouse depend. As expected, the BLM’s plan would allow the agency to reduce wild horse and burro populations and habitat, even though mustangs and burros are federally protected and their numbers are dwarfed by the massive numbers of cattle and sheep grazing on BLM lands.
The comment period ends on Jan. 29, so let’s get as many comments in as possible to tell the tell the BLM that the public will not let the agency get away with using the sage grouse as an excuse to get rid of or reduce wild horses and burros in Utah and Idaho!