Morning Coffee Chatter

It appears that there is some rather interesting “chatter” in the wild horse world today. I’ll start with this one and post again in a bit…

Maureen Harmonay wrote in an article for the Examiner about the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association reports posted on the BLM webpage about previously undisclosed deaths of Calico horses.

I wont comment to the specifics she addresses, but urge you to read the article. Instead I want to point out a bit more “food for thought” in the reports.

In the report dated Feb. 13, Dr. Davis (ASVMA), writes: “We did not see any indication of infectious disease.” He then goes on to note a horse in quarantine with an abscess that was suspected to have strangles.

comment: A horse with an abscess was in quarantine on Feb 13. A single horse with “no other signs of infectious disease” in the population. I thought we were being told horses had signs of pigeon fever and abscesses since they came in off the range?

He comments about the foals with sloughed hooves. He notes that only “verbal” information was available. He then notes that the foal was “emaciated,” and the metabolic issues associated with re-feeding may contribute to the condition causing eventual hoof slough.

comment: I will send Dr. Davis pictures of the “emaciated” foal with hoof slough.Then he will have visual confirmation that the colt was not emaciated. Perhaps he will delete the justification spin he hands the BLM in this report?

Calico Foal

Foal euthanized at Fallon Facilty

He also notes the average body score is 5 or above with a few at 3 or less. 12 horses in the hospital pen were of a 2 or less (mares).

comment: I was there at the end of January and saw a handful of 2’s, not in the hospital pens. The hospital pens held horses suffering from some form of lameness or another. I have photographs, no “2’s.”

However I agree the vast majority of horses were a 5 or better. The high percentage of older horses also refutes a claim of an unhealthy range.

I have too many comments about the reasons horses can drop weight quickly and if you read his report you will see the significant number of issues he left out.

He also notes that Dr. Sanford mentioned pregnant mares, gathered in winter, are usually in the poorest condition.

comment: So why did you do such a large gather during winter against the advice of a federal judge?

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6 thoughts on “Morning Coffee Chatter

  1. janet eaker says:

    There is also an article by Carrol Abel @ the Examiner about BLM’s plans for a tristate mega wild horse complex!!!!! Have you seen that article?

    • Laura Leigh says:

      Actually that’s why I started this piece by saying “I’ll start with this one!”
      : )
      The next one gets “interesting” on many levels. I have been following the Sheldon horses and am the plaintiff in an action. So I have to check on a few things…
      Interesting…

  2. sandra longley says:

    I read both of these, the HS visits to the facility on 2 occasions and the examiner article this morning.
    Came to the same conclusions, absolutely no mention by the HS of PF nor did the BLM report any observations at either time to the HS. No mention of scarring, which they would have only found during the handling in processing..and hair coats were too heavy and long to have visually seen that..a fall outbreak would not still have scars-having had pidgeon fevor in horses..in a couple of months you can’t tell at all that they have had an abcess..I would have to say there are a multitude of ways those horses could have picked it up, including came in with it…and since no one saw any evidence of it until after the last visit by the HS on March 6-closer to april..I would have to say they did not come in with it..There are no current outbreaks being reported across the US(I googled it ) and countered in my argument to Dr. Kane with that information..Yes there were alot of outbreaks last fall, the typical PF season, being reported…BLM was looking specifically for a strangles outbreak and did in fact vaccinate these horses for it..And I thank them for being ahead of that.
    As to the multi state HMA they are proposing-we should take a hard look at it break it down into benifits verses potential pitfalls for the horses…looking at how they currently do their assesments..On the face of it -it looks like a good thing for the horses..but we want to know that it isn’t a trojan horse..I have been asking for a better way to manage the horses, fair and equitable, so I am willing to take a “hard” look at it.

  3. sandra longley says:

    Altho I have not been told this, it is my opinion, that there are several reasons they were hot to do a winter gather..The official line is that,”the snow will be on the ground so it will be easier on the horses, and they will be at lower elevations-not have to be pushed so far. In BLMs own documentation from the 2005 gather-when they missed alot of horses-they discovered that horses migrate to the california side of the calicos toward the suprise valley area in the winter. I had a discussion with Dr. Kane-about how many horses are actually left on the calicos and I questioned the accuracy of a count of 6oo, made right after the gather..an observer drove the perimeter of the calicos/black rock areas and saw 1 Horse, a big black stallion, that we think was Freedom-and miles futher the tracks of a lone mare with the tracks of a new born foal looking for a water source..this tells me several things..in the several months since the gather. Neither one of these horses has been able to find others to join with..horses do not like to be alone…stallions are bloodhounds in their search for mares..There are not horses to be found..Dr Kane told me he personally saw and counted 38 around the gather area after it was over..These horses were hunkered down in areas they KNEW had food and water and shelter in the winter..Those lead mares control those movements of migration based on their years of experience..They were either pushed out of those safe winter areas, into the gather and either pens or left out on the range in areas that would not have food and water in the winter..that does not bode well for those horses..they were run and burned up calories they needed to conserve to get thru until spring. Hopefully those on the california side of the calicos were spared and will survive..I have grave doubts about those that were left scattered and worn out and depleted.
    Anyway my feeling is that they gathered in the winter, so that the mares would not have a chance to rebreed after they foaled…all the mares would foal in the pens, thus eliminating a years foal crop to deal with. Along with that, the pipeline in the Rubys is set to start construction in APRIL and would interfere or make a gather impossible..remember that pipe line runs through or borders HMAs all the way to WYO. Hence the need for speed

  4. Anne says:

    My comment is simply this:

    The BLM is waging War against America’s Mustangs / Burros

    The Helicopter is the War Machine

    The BLM Fallon and Palomino are the Battlefields…

    and 74 Mustangs have perished @ the BLM Fallon Battlefield!(most by the hands of Dr. Sanford; in my opinion

    • Anne says:

      ps and recall this:

      “Dr. (sandpit) Sandford does use a weapon to “destroy the sixk or weak Mustangs…

      just another indication of The War the BLM is waging…

      and I am sorry Hope and others had to fall…they are

      America’s Fallen Soldier Mustangs; I give Hope a Medal !(and to the other 73 who perished; a Medal for y’all too;

      for what? for being Courageous Soldiers in an unfair War

      I am with you o’ mustangs; w/ my heart; mind and soul…(and with any of god’s critters who are confused; used and or abused….when I think of Sanford? i go grrrrrrr…A.

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