My travels this last year have taken me over 60,000 miles since last summer. HMA’s in Nevada, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon and California.

Since roundups ended at the end of February I have crafted reports, done facility checks in three states, tracked horses and done range recon. I have assisted in the crafting of the documents for the Ninth Circuit. In many ways I have been busier than when documenting roundups.

Hit with a stomach issue this week as I worked with the attorney I was “laid up” for a couple of days.

Trying to create the agenda for the next road trip several things have come to my attention. One of the greatest issues is that the contradictions within a National program again speak to petty kingdoms run by petty kings, with no accountability has not abated.

Last July Federal Judge Larry Hicks ruled that the closure of public land during a roundup is a prior restraint to First Amendment Rights.

In a Press Release on Summer Roundups, dated June 20th, Director Bob Abbey states:

“With the new gather season starting in July, we must carry out these gathers in a fully transparent manner,” said BLM Director Bob Abbey.  “That includes taking full ownership of what we do and by sharing both the positive and negative news with our various publics, whatever criticism may come our way.”

Yet the plan for the Jackie’s Butte Roundup in Oregon states:

As needed for orderly administration of the gather and to ensure safety for personnel and horses during gather operations, there will be a temporary closure to public access, use, or occupancy on public lands adjacent to and within the Jackies Butte Herd Management Area.

There are a number of other concerns right now about Oregon.

It never stops.

If you can help get gas in my tank… I’ll go check it out.

Still tracking horses for adoptions and working on other issues. Yes, I hope to be there for Triple B (date has changed). But without your support I’m grounded.

Following Submitted by:

Bonnie Kohleriter




The BLM wants to spend our tax money to keep its wild horse and burro employees in business.  It has gathered so called “excess” horses so vigorously these past few years that it now appears to be ‘scraping the bottom of the barrel.’ to try to justify its work.  Meanwhile, the taxpayer is having to pay for the costly helicopter gather of the horses, the trucking, the corralling, and the 20 year long- term pasturing commitment to the horses when it is highly questionable if the horses even need to be removed from their range where they are free to live. After all, these horses are only to be removed if they are in excess.

At the start of 2011 around l940 horses were reportedly on the range  although 2715 were allowed to be there.(Oregon BLM Wild Horse and Burro Population Data Report Date January 29, 2011)  Bob Abbey set the appropriate management level for Oregon at 2715 horses. So Oregon would be allowed 775 more horses. In spite of this, this summer the Oregon Wild Horse and Burro Specialists will embark on an aggressive gather operation as set forth below.

1.     Kiger in the Burns District can have 51 to 82 horses on its range.  127  will be there post-foal time.  The BLM hikes up its numbers at gather time.  It says 132 will be there, 82 need to be removed, leaving 50 or is it 45 which is below the range of what is to be there.

2.     Ten horses each outside their range areas of Paisley in the Lakeview District and of Warm Springs in the Burns District will be gathered although about 70 more horses could be in each of their range areas. The wild horses once had a herd area in which they were found and in which they were to be left to live.  But the boys of the BLM said they needed to lessen that area so they could manage their horses.  So now when the horses step over those boys’ man-made management lines, they are gathered, removed, corralled, 20 years long-term pastured.  Why not, the government has all kinds of money for such activity.  Don’t try to just put them back in their managed range areas of there is room for them.

3.     Riddle in the Burns District can have 33 to 56 horses on its range.  72 are there post-foal time. Once again, the BLM hikes up its numbers saying 87 are there, 54 need to be removed leaving 33 or is it 18 which is at or below the range of what can be there.

4.     Jackies Butte in the Vale District can have 75 to 150 horses on its range. 210 are there post-foal time. The BLM in this district doesn’t hike up its numbers this time. The BLM says 210 are on the range, 135 need to be removed leaving 75 which is at the lowest range of what can be there.  But the BLM is not done.  It plans to geld 10 of its 75 and return them to the range so that only 65 reproducing animals will be left, numbers below the lower AML.

5.    Three Fingers in the Vale District can have 75 to 150.  About 314 are there post-foal but less may be there because of previous pzp treatments.  250 will be gathered, 175 removed, and 75 left. But once again, the BLM isn’t done yet. Of the 75 almost all or 32 will be pzp ed though pzp works best November through January  and 10 will be gelded.  Studies suggest mares pzp ed in August may birth in the winter which would be potentially dangerous to the foal and mother.

6.    Coyote Alvord, Sheephead Heath, and Sands Spring are all in the Vale District and are a clue to be wary when the BLM wants to group Herd Management Areas or HMAs.  Sand Springs can have 100 to 200 horses on its range.  72 are there post-foal.  So why is it involved in a gather?  Coyote Lake Alvord Tule, previously 74 pzp ed in ll-08 can have 198 to 302 horses on its range.  339 are there post-foal with 37 excess horses or perhaps less because of the previous pzp treatment and the harsh winter. Sheepshead Heath Creek, previously 46 pzp ed in 11-08 can have 1612-302 horses on its range.  333 are there post-foal with 31 excess horses or again perhaps less because of the pzp treatment and the past brutal winter.  31 plus 37 or 68 excess horses or maybe not.  So why does the BLM want to gather 626 horses and remove 258…not to remove excess horses but to bring Coyote Lake Alvord Tule and Sheepshead Heath Creek down to its lower AML.  Does an excess of 68 or lower in two areas and a below AML in another area justify such a large gather and removal.  Oh, I forget the government has lots of money to spend on helicopter gathers, removals,  trucking, corralling, 20 year long-term pasturing.  But the BLM once again doesn’t  quit here. Of the 368 not gathered assuming half are mares, 184, and half are stallions or 184, 140 or 76% of the mares will be pzp ed and 40 or 22% of the stallions will be gelded.

Inflating numbers to justify gathers and removals, taking numbers below their lower acceptable range levels, removing horses from the range  when they could be put back in their managed range area, grouping herd groups to mask unwarranted gathering and removing in some herds, gathering and removing when excesses have not been established, gathering and removing far in excess of what is needed to stay long-term within your appropriate management levels, and using pzp inappropriately speaks to mismanagement.

It is not a wonder our long-term 21 pastures are almost filled to capacity.  It is not a wonder thousands of our wild horses are languishing in barren, unsheltered corrals up to three years when they were only to be there 30-45 days.

Why is it the American public has to pay for this grossly mismanaged program? Why is it the American wild horses and burros whose ancestors gave so much to us  and who are so majestic and unique have to suffer at the hands of a grossly flawed program denied their homes, their families, and their bands?  Isn’t it time to change the guard?


22 thoughts on “Oregon

  1. Morgan Griffith says:

    I just donated $100 Laura, I would hope that there is an advocate that can match that or at least 1/2 match it. We gotta get you on the road and keep you there with our blessings and promised support. You are doing what most of us can’t do. Without your reports we would truly be in the dark. Laura I hope you can start your engine.

    • Laura Leigh says:

      Making plans to get on the road.
      Often I take off with just enough to get there… and pray that I can get back.
      : )

      Thank you, Morgan.

    • Bless you Morgan ,
      thank you for your help , we need her out there ,
      there is no one else out there Documenting these BLM roundups and the BLM is free to do anything , POOR Wild Horse and Burros .

  2. Louie Cocroft says:

    Me too, Laura. I donated. Keep those wheels on the road. Take care out there

  3. LisaG. says:


    do you have a link to the statement on Jackie’s Butte? I’d like to send that on to a few people but would like to source the original document.

  4. Louie Cocroft says:

    Lisa, is this what you are looking for?

    Final Environmental Assessment
    Jackies Butte Herd Management Area
    Wild Horse Gather Plan


  5. LisaG. says:

    Thank you .. I also read the following on page 15 Grazing Management: “The operators are authorized to utilize 14,274 Animal Unit Months (AUMs) of forage within the allotment each year between April 1 and October 31. ”

    That would be 2039 cows allowed to graze there each and every month of the SEVEN months.

  6. Louie Cocroft says:

    Also, Lisa, a cow and calf are counted as ONE UNIT, while a Wild Mare and her foal are counted as TWO UNITS.

  7. Leslie Peeples says:

    I just donated 200. because Oregans horses need someone to watch out for them, to try to hold BLM accountable for their inhumane mismanagement of Americas wild horses!! You go Laura!!! and c’mon folk pull it out for the horses, match my 200. or even give 5. Thanks, from the wild ones!!

  8. Bless you dear Laura ,
    i am sorry that i am useless .

    • Morgan Griffith says:

      You are not useless!!!!!!!!

    • Laura Leigh says:

      You are not useless… brother.
      We all stand with one broken heart.
      We hold each other up the best we can…
      but often folks that claim to have such “compassion” for the horses forget that “compassion” must be practiced.
      Don’t let the sh*theads get you down. They know not what they do.


  10. Thank you, my friend, for sticking your neck and the rest of you out there again as the helicopter fires up and the end of so many wild mustang lives as they know it begins. In the heat of summer, new foals with tiny soft feet…It’s absolutely sickening.

    Not just because I love these horses; it’s sickening because I understand that virtually no “excess” horses are out there, not on the HMAs where horses are truly vastly outnumbered by cattle and sheep and grass is lush and water is available and even abundant in many places. “Excess” is a truly, objectively speaking, an arbitrary term. I’m not making this up. What’s made up is the concept of “excess” horses that the Bureau of Land Management has managed to sell to Congress.

    It’s vital that we call and write our congressional reps. They need help seeing past BLM-speak.

    It is high time BLM started managing the ranges for wild horses an burros, not cattle and sheep. That means leaving predators. That means reducing grazing permits or eliminating them altogether.

    Laura, the contributions you are making are unprecedented on many fronts, my friend. Carpe diem. Hang in there. You are running the race to win, running the race to finish strong. I’ll be joining you when I can.

    • Dear Elyse Gardner ,
      bless you , bless your words and your support , she needs you all to back her up , she needs support , she is alone , this is not a fight or race to be done by one , she needs more support every moment of her life ,
      thank you ,
      honor you .

  11. Paula Denmon says:

    Yes, Laura,yes. Thank you for the hard numbers. I am forwarding your information to my useless Senators & Rep. In Congress. We are trying to stop theBLM. When I spoke to the President’s comment center today about this, he asked if I wanted the number of the BLM. I said. Please write down exactly what I say. “I have the number of the BLM, and it is time that some one in the administration GETS THEIR NUMBER TOO. “. Please have the staffer who deals with the BLM to call me. We’ll see! This poor Realtor will send a donation from my next closing. Pray God there is one. Best wishes. We are there with you.

  12. Ray Davis says:

    Laura, I will be on Ginger Chapin’s radio program this Saturday, July 9, and will be discussing the BLM roundups beginning this month. We are recording it tomorrow and I am going to bring the Kiger Mustang roundup and the others, hopefully for at least a segment. This hour will be dedicated to Saving our Mustangs. Very little time will be for discussing my book about the mustangs…Saving the Mustangs right now is paramount. God bless you in your tireless efforts on the Front Lines.

    • Laura Leigh says:

      Ray… add a link so folks can pass it around.
      Good Luck!
      Try to get folks to comprehend this IS a microcosm of public land management.


      • Ray Davis says:

        Laura, I will be on Ginger Chapin’s radio program this Saturday, July 9, and will be discussing the BLM roundups beginning this month. We are recording it tomorrow and I am going to bring the Kiger Mustang roundup and the others, hopefully for at least a segment. This hour will be dedicated to Saving our Mustangs. Very little time will be for discussing my book about the mustangs…Saving the Mustangs right now is paramount. God bless you in your tireless efforts on the Front Lines.
        Here is the link to the radio station the program will be airing on July 9 at 12 noon.
        http://www.wstcwnlk.com/ It will be streaming worldwide. Click on at the top where it says, “Listen Live.”
        Here is radio host Ginger Chapin and her talk show web site, Conscious Lifestyles. http://www.consciouslifestylesradio.com/bio.htm We hope to open the eyes of Americans this Saturday. We will be exposing the atrocities being inflicted on our Wild Horses.

  13. Ray Davis says:

    Also, the program will be airing on a Phoenix, Arizona, station, but I do not have the call letters for that one…it more than likely will be a talk show station. I will post it when I have it. We record the interview tomorrow and it will be aired Saturday at noon. If this will expose the BLM and 5th Generation Cattleman Ken Salazar and what they are preparing to do this month, I will feel like I left this life a successful man….

  14. Christie says:

    Maybe we should suggest th Speaker Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell that a good way to cut the deficit would be to eliminate the BLM. There were several comments during the BLM’s appropriations hearing indicating that the Congress is aware of the poor job the BLM is doing.

    Only 3% of your budget is actually used on management…

    I am surprised you requested 45 million dollars to purchase more land when you aren’t able to manage the land you already. Have…

    What do you mean you don’t know how much your agency spent to pay plaintiffs in lawsuits your agency lost last year?…

    I think some of them are starting to get it.

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