Wild horses in the Calico Mountains Complex of Northwestern Nevada originate from 500 Spanish Barbs who were brought to the region during the 1860s. Over the years, ranchers allowed saddle, carriage, and draft horse breeds onto the open range, which interbred with the original Spanish Barb stock. Thoroughbred studs and pinto mares were also introduced to the area to “upgrade” the local wild horses. As a result, today’s Calico horses prove to be a colorful and genetically unique herd.
In 2010, the BLM launched one of the largest (and deadliest) wild horse roundups in recent years, and removed 1,922 wild Calico horses from their homeland. Return to Freedom adopted over 100 of these horses, who are now safe and cared for, and live a life as close as we can give them to the one they knew in the wild.