Belina has grown into a confident mare. From the time she was born she displayed an alert and curious nature and over time as her confidence grew, she began to enjoy socialization with humans on her own terms! She has been best friends with her herd sister Ama. Today they are confident mares in Barack’s newly formed Harem band at the sanctuary. Belina has been able to grow up in a safe environment free from capture and harassment.
In 1998, the Fish and Wildlife Service was removing all wild horses and burros from the Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge in southeastern Oregon due to pressure from hunters to manage the refuge for pronghorn antelope and bighorn sheep. The roundup was conducted on horseback and 279 horses were removed from the Refuge. Twenty-five horses were relocated to Return to Freedom’s American Wild Horse Sanctuary in their family and bachelor bands.
Hart Mountain is named for the heart-shaped brand used by the pioneer ranchers Henry C. Wilson and his son-in-law C.G. Alexander. Their ranch was located in the Warner Valley at the base of Hart Mountain.