The helicopter roundup at Muddy Creek HMA ended 09/13/18, with 153 wild horses removed from the range due to dry conditions and overpopulation. No horses were returned to the range and one died in the process. Details of the loss were not provided.
Wild horse populations have been declining in Utah this year, with the Range Creek, Cedar Mountain, Four Mile, Bible Spring, Tilly Creek and Sulphur HMAs—along with Muddy Creek—targeted for removals. Onaqui Mountain, popular with visitors and residents, has been spared so far.
The drought that has affected several western states in 2018 only seems to affect wild horses and burros. Impacts to livestock have not been reported.
If winter brings sufficient precipitation will the horses be returned to the range?
Animals not placed into private care will be moved to segregated long-term holding in off-range pastures. No foals, no family, no legacy.
RELATED: Muddy Creek Gather Starts Next Week.