Ranchers Protest Malheur Horse Transfer

Several wild horses were moved last week from the Ochoco National Forest (Big Summit WHT) to the Malheur National Forest (Murderer’s Creek WHT) and some public-lands ranchers caught the Forest Service doing it, according to a story that appeared today in the Capital Press of Salem, OR.

These people never want to see wild horses coming into their allotments, only going out.

“Wild horses are a contentious subject in the Malheur National Forest, where ranchers say the animals trample stream banks to the detriment of federally-protected fish, preventing cattle from being allowed to graze on affected allotments.”

The transfer may have been carried out to improve the genetic diversity of the Murderer’s Creek horses, a common practice in the Riddle Mountain and Kiger HMAs, where herd sizes are too small to maintain genetic viability.

An explanation of the incident is expected soon, according to the report.

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