Eagle Roundup Day 15

The incident began on January 6.  Gather stats through January 20:

  • Horses captured: 509
  • Goal: 1,131
  • Returned: 0
  • Deaths: 8
  • Shipped: 458

No horses were captured on Day 14.  No deaths were reported on Days 14 and 15.

Only one foal has been caught to date.  Roughly 43% of captured adults are male and 57% are female.  Some of the mares are probably within a few weeks of foaling.

Body condition scores are not known.

The HMA of origin was not reported.  Three HMAs are involved in the roundup.

The number of unaccounted-for animals is 43.

The number of mares that have been treated with contraceptives and returned to the range is not known.

RELATED: Eagle Roundup Day 13.

New Fence Coming to Sand Wash Basin

A report posted today by the Craig Press says the funds have been raised and the project has been given a green light by the Colorado Department of Transportation.

The fence, to be 3.5 feet tall, will be installed along Highway 318, keeping the horses off the roadway without restricting access to food and water.

Horses placed into private care from areas like this one must be corralled by six foot fences until gentled.

RELATED: Sand Wash Fatality Renews Push for Fencing.

Predators Can’t Match Impact of PZP Zealots

They’re getting rid of more wild horses than these guys ever could.

The management plans assign most of their food to privately owned livestock, forcing them into areas where they’re not welcomed, and their answer is to shoot the mares with contraceptive darts.

Next to the public-lands ranchers, the greatest threat to America’s wild horses is not the drilling companies, not the mining companies, but the so-called advocacy groups.

RELATED: No Natural Predators?

Coyote at Water Tanks 11-14-20

My, How Quickly Things Change at the BLM

Two hours into the Biden administration.  If you go to the BLM home page and click on the Quick Facts tab, you’ll see four priorities, down from six priorities under Trump.

What changed?

  • Safety through Energy Independence – Gone
  • Supporting the American Worker – Gone
  • Securing America’s Borders – Gone
  • Greatness through Shared Conservation – Gone
  • Respecting the American Family – Gone
  • Preserving America’s Cultural Resources – Still there

New priorities may appear in the coming weeks.  The goal for today was to get rid of anything Trump.

RELATED: Haaland to Head Interior?

Management Priorities at Surprise Complex

Table 1-1 in the Draft EA for resource enforcement actions at the Surprise Complex provides the sizes of the six HMAs involved.  Table 1-2 provides the forage allocations and AMLs.

Table 3-2 provides the forage allocations and grazing seasons for the six allotments that overlap the HMAs.  The allotment master report created on January 17 by RAS provides the allotment sizes and permittees.

The map in Appendix G shows how the HMAs and allotments are related.

What do these data tell you about the management priorities at the Complex?

Surprise Complex Calcs 01-20-21

Land in the Bare Allotment, which overlaps the Fox Hog HMA, can produce 65.7 AUMs per thousand acres per year if you’re talking about livestock, but can only produce 21.4 AUMs per thousand acres per year if you’re talking about wild horses.

The Bare permittee would have to place 1,473 cow/calf pairs on the allotment to graze off 13,260 AUMs in a nine month season, for a stocking rate of 7.3 cow/calf pairs per thousand acres, while the management plan allows only 1.8 wild horses per thousand acres in Fox Hog.

In general, the land can produce almost four times as much forage for privately owned livestock than it can for wild horses, and can support an overall stocking rate for cattle that’s nearly seven times higher than the stocking rate for wild horses.

The HMAs are a subset of the allotments, with approximately 73% of the allotment acreage falling within the HMAs.  If forage is evenly distributed, that means the cattle receive an estimated 22,300 AUMs per year inside the HMAs, compared to 6,000 AUMs per year for the horses.

The forage assigned to livestock would support an additional 1,850 wild horses, for a true AML of 2,350.

The Complex is managed primarily for livestock.  The HMAs, and the crumbs assigned thereto, are concessions of the grazing program.

The Complex is not overpopulated.  There are no excess horses and there is no justification for a roundup or fertility control program.  The resources consigned to the public-lands ranchers are more than enough to support the current herd, thought to be around 1,300 animals.

RELATED: Surprises at Surprise Complex.

Modoc Horse Problem: Allowing Cattle Ranchers to Make a Living

“It’s not fair to cut out the small rural communities that rely on these places for their livelihoods,” according to a story posted today by KQED.

Nobody’s trying to shut them down.  We just want them confined to their own property, like everybody else.

Get your livestock off the public lands and pay the going rate to feed them.

RELATED: Fixing the Modoc Horse Problem.

Big Summit Horses Await AML Decision

A decision notice was issued in November, subject to a 45-day appeal period.

That process ended on January 4, according to a report posted today by the Central Oregonian, and the Forest Service has 45 days to review the objections.

The WHT is subject to permitted livestock grazing, as noted in the article.

A login is required to read the full story.

RELATED: Big Summit AML Reduction Still In the News.

Eagle Roundup Day 13

The incident began on January 6.  Gather stats through January 18:

  • Horses captured: 503
  • Goal: 1,131
  • Returned: 0
  • Deaths: 8
  • Shipped: 358

Two deaths were reported on Day 12 and one on Day 13, due to pre-existing conditions.

A foal was taken on Day 12, the only one to date.  Roughly 43% of captured adults are male and 57% are female.  Some of the mares are probably within a few weeks of foaling.

Body condition scores are not known.

The HMA of origin was not reported.  Three HMAs are involved in the roundup.

The number of unaccounted-for animals is 137.

Some of the mares will be treated with contraceptives and released but the gather page shows no such activity.

RELATED: Eagle Roundup Day 10.

Surprises at Surprise Complex

All six allotments in the Surprise Complex are in the Improve category, according to the Allotment Master Report in RAS.  This may mean that they are not meeting one or more standards for rangeland health.

If so, how much of the shortfall can be attributed to wild horses and burros?  Refer to Sections 1.6 and 3.2.4 in the Draft EA.

Surprise Complex Allotment Map

The Wall Canyon HMA coincides with the Wall Canyon East allotment, so it is a good candidate for a ‘Short End of Stick’ report.

The management plan assigns 300 AUMs per year to the horses (Table 1-2), compared to 3,215 AUMs per year to cattle (Table 3-2).  That’s about 9% of the forage to horses and 91% to cattle, in an area set aside for the horses.

The proposed gather plan cannot change the resource allocations and management priorities in the Complex.  It can only enforce them.

RELATED: Comments Invited on Draft EA for Surprise Complex.

Eagle Roundup Day 10

The incident began on January 6.  Gather stats through January 15:

  • Horses captured: 412
  • Goal: 1,131
  • Returned: 0
  • Deaths: 5
  • Shipped: 289

No deaths were reported on Days 9 and 10.

No youngsters have been gathered.  Roughly 44% of captured adults are males and 56% are females.  Some of the mares are probably within a few weeks of foaling.

Body condition scores are not known.

The HMA of origin was not reported.  Three HMAs are involved in the roundup.

The number of unaccounted-for animals is 118.  They are probably being held on site.

Some of the mares will be treated with contraceptives and returned to the range.

RELATED: Eagle Roundup Day 8.