BLM to capture 215 wild horses in Oregon helicopter roundups

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A helicopter from contractor Cattoor Livestock Roundup Co. drives wild horses toward the trap at the Cedar Mountain Horse Management Area in Utah during February 2017. RTF file photo by Steve Paige.


The Bureau of Land Management plans to capture a combined 215 wild horses in helicopter roundups on a pair of Oregon herd management areas, beginning on or around Jan. 22.

The roundups will reduce herd numbers on both HMAs to the low end of their BLM-set “Appropriate Management Levels.”

BLM plans to capture 180 wild horses from the 29,883-acre Cold Springs Herd Management Area, located about 25 miles southwest of Harper, Ore. The agency plans to return 60-75 of those wild horses to the range, including 37 mares treated with fertility control vaccine. That would leave 75 wild horses on the HMA, which has an AML of 75-150 wild horses, according to a press release.

From the 21,814-acre Hog Creek Herd Management Area, located about 20 miles west of Vale, Ore., BLM plans to capture 35 wild horses. The agency plans to return 25 to the range – including 15 mares treated with fertility control vaccine – for a post-roundup population of 30. Hog Creek’s AML is set at 30-50 wild horses.

Both HMAs are also leased for seasonal livestock grazing. The Cold Springs HMA has a livestock Animal Unit Months limit of 9,030, while Hog Creek’s livestock AUM has been set at 5,502. An AUM is defined as the amount of forage needed to sustain one cow and her calf, one horse, or five sheep or goats for one month.

Wild horses removed from their home range are to be transported to the Wild Horse Corral Facility in Hines, Ore., and later offered for adoption. The corral is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.

Viewing the roundup

BLM will lead members of the public from the Vale BLM office, at 100 Oregon St., to the roundup site daily. Observers must provide their own high-clearance, four-wheel drive vehicles. The number of observers will be limited to 15 per day. Those who wish to attend must contact Larisa Bogardus at (541) 947-6237 or to be added to the viewing list.

Take action

  • The Cold Springs and Hog Creek roundups have been scheduled even as wild horses remain in danger of being killed by the Bureau of Land Management. The House of Representatives’ version of the Fiscal Year 2018 Interior appropriations bill would allow BLM to “euthanize” — shoot — healthy, unadopted wild horses and burros; the Senate’s version contains language preventing BLM from using tax dollars to kill healthy wild horses and burros. Leaders from the two houses are ironing out the differences between their bills in conference. Please call the members of Congress listed below and urge them to:
    • support Senate Interior appropriations bill language protecting healthy wild horses and burros from being killed;
    • support Senate Agriculture appropriations bill language preventing horse slaughter.
      • House Speaker Paul Ryan: (202) 225-3031
      • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell: (202) 224-2541
      • Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, House Appropriations Committee chairman: (202) 225-5034
      • Rep. Nita Lowey, House Appropriations Committee ranking member: (202) 225-6506
      • Sen. Thad Cochran, Senate Appropriations Committee chairman: (202) 224-5054
      • Sen. Patrick Leahy, Senate Appropriations Committee vice chairman: (202) 224-4242