The Bureau of Land Management has captured 596 wild horses through the first six days of an “emergency” helicopter roundup on the Paisley Desert Herd Management Area, about 10 miles northeast of Paisley, Ore.
The BLM says the roundup was “needed due to the lack of water and the wild horses’ rapidly declining health associated with herd overpopulation,” according to a press release.
Nine wild horses have died during the roundup, most recently:
–A 3-year-old mare was euthanized due to blindness;
–a male palomino foal was euthanized due to “a pre-existing leg injury”;
–a 7-year-old grey stallion was euthanized due to a club foot;
–a 6-year-old pinto stallion was euthanized due to a pre-existing injury in his rear right leg.
In addition, a 6-month-old pinto filly was euthanized after being found on the range before the roundup began with a body condition score of 1, or poor, on a 9-point-scale and unable to rise from her side, according to BLM.
The agency plans to capture and remove 750 wild horses during the roundup.
BLM has no plans to treat additional mares with safe, proven and humane fertility control that would slow, not stop reproduction, and reduce future roundups.
A total of 1,050 wild horses, including foals, were estimated to be living on the Paisley Desert Herd Management Area before the roundup began. The agency-set Appropriate Management Level for the HMA, which is composed of 271,667 acres of public and private land, is 60-150 wild horses, or as low as one horse for every 4,528 acres.
By comparison, the BLM has allocated 10,151 Animal Unit Months to private livestock grazing on the Herd Management Area or about 846 cow-calf pairs annually. One AUM is the amount of forage needed to sustain one cow-calf combination, one horse, or five sheep for a month.
Captured horses will be transported to the BLM’s Wild Horse Corrals in Hines, Ore., to be prepared for adoption or sale.
Viewing the roundup: No viewing opportunities will be available on private land. To view the portions of the roundup taking place on public land, call (541) 947-6811. Viewing will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
TAKE ACTION: Urge Congress to press the Bureau of Land Management to implement a robust program of proven, safe and humane fertility control in order to phase out roundups and manage wild horses and burros humanely on the range