HIgh Rock continues

High Rock, 10-30

Yesterday, Oct. 30, the Bureau of Land Management’s contractor Sun J was unsuccessful in removing the last few horses left in the Woodruff trap site area.

The horses were driven to that location after being moved for at least 2 hours.

Because the agency is incredibly reluctant to place gps tracking devices and/or cameras in the contracted helicopters the exact distance the animals travel remains unknown.

At the time of (our) arrival the trap was noted to have several areas where issues (accidents) were possible to occur dependent on the direction horses were driven from. This included observation of a fence line that contained barbed wire that was potentially in the path of travel. This despite the fact that this roundup, as well as previous ones, have had fatalities associated with the presence of barbed wire.

It was observed that one of the possibilities noted at arrival did occur and is demonstrated at this video link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlXzyA1_fUo

Of concern at the trap was evidence that the pilot had brought in members of unrelated bands indicating that fracturing of family groups continues. Of the six that made the vicinity of the trap 4 grouped together and as the other 2 attempted to join them for safety a stallion gave warning for them to keep their distance. Also of note is that the group consisting of a  mature stallion with three mares had no youngsters. Again because of the agencies reluctance to outfit the contract helicopters with cameras only speculation can occur (it raises serious questions as to what happens to animals when they are out of sight and why the agency is so adamant in their refusal).

Apparently the COR operating that particular day at the Woodruff site did call off the pilot from continuing his pursuit.

Observation of operations continued at the temporary holding facility located on Highway 34 in the Complex.

Horses that had been captured in previous days were present. As no new animals were removed handling during processing could not be observed.

The animals removed from this roundup are primarily of good flesh for this time of year. The only horses observed that are below a 5 on the Heinekke scale are those that appear to have dropped colts in the spring and are of more advanced age. (One exception observed was a young mare that may have an underlying illness or anomaly).

Observations noted wounds of various degrees on feet and legs.

Observation: Temporary Holding 10-30

Trap site was moved to Texas Creek area (area was included in the public tour pre-roundup).

Horses were observed in the operation site area. Forage and water was noted to support population present. No underweight or distressed animals were observed. Of population recorded 12% were estimated at one year of age or younger, (Includes observation of two apparent bachelor bands).

Still free 10-30

Observation of the trap noted that a small canyon would be used to hide the entrance to the panels. This area was strewn with sharp rock and large sage.

Assessment of the area indicated that the terrain was likely to increase injury to feet and legs. This information was noted in a fast post on the blog last night.

In BLM’s report today they note “no injuries.” Please keep in mind that none of the photos documenting injuries from puncture wounds to faces, severe lacerations to legs or bloody feet have never been listed in BLM’s update. BLM only notes injuries that lead to fatality in both facility and roundup reports.

Of particular note: BLM has stated that there will be no more animals released into any of the HMA’s of the High Rock Complex until the Calico Complex roundup has been completed. If numbers are not reached at Calico, no more animals will be released into High Rock. The reasoning is that the HMA’s share a boundary line.

So even though the public must continue to comment and address the AML’s of each of these areas through differing processes of public comment, the BLM now considers the populations fluid. This is an increasing trend and dilutes the public’s ability to address the system (utilizing their rights guaranteed under law) toward effective advocacy for this primary user (wild herds) as defined by the Federal Land Use Policy Management Act (FLPMA).

As I was informed that another observer would be present 10-31, I did not attend todays operation. The time was utilized condensing reports into a cohesive format for the NAS and actually taking a shower (the dog told me I stink).

Back into the field…

Donations to help continue the documentation can be made at http://wildhorseeducation.org


23 thoughts on “HIgh Rock continues

  1. Mar Wargo says:

    The ever convenient changes to policy in removing wild horses and burros off the range. There is no way most people will ever see this. We could have a ‘Wild Horse Call In Day” on this roundup, Laura. It looks like this is a very bad place. Tell us when you want backup and voices to call BLM, the White House (for good measure) and Nevada/California district BLM offices among others?

    • Mar Wargo says:

      At one minute and 20 seconds I am seeing an amazing breakaway and these horses see ahead the pens and stop and turn and run right around the the very low hung helicopter! A real escape. Glad they had the energy to run even further for their lives!

      • Mar Wargo says:

        Josh Helyer wreaks pandemonium on 6 wild horses and keeps running them in circles! He is nuts! Time for a reprimand and grounding and maybe a fine? Would BLM like to apologize to the public for this terrorizing of a protected heritage species? I would think Helyer would be ragged with the constant correction of his over flight. It is terrible to see the horses tire from the run and turn and run and turn as it seems endlessly repeated.

        Get this guy out of the air BLM. You have coddled your new pilot long enough.

  2. Jill says:

    God, I hate what we have put in office to run our country and protect what is precious and invaluable to us both as citizens and as human beings!

    I absolutely hate it!

    Heritage, preservation, family and freedom mean nothing to this administration.

  3. Paula Denmon says:

    Very interesting video. I wonder if the horses would finally just run the opposite way…away from the trap. those horses did get pretty smart, even tho’ they were so tired. And it would seem strange that there were no foals or at least yearling fillies. Every single piece of footage seems to scream inhumane.
    I’m glad that Elvis convinced you to shower…and rest some, I hope. And I pray that the NAS uses your information to help the plight of the horses before they are all gone.
    Still a hero, you are.

  4. Louie Cocroft says:

    Does the helicopter pilot have to be drug tested before flying?

  5. Louie Cocroft says:

    I thought that by law, they had to remove barbed wire from anywhere near the traps

  6. Paula Boynton says:

    It seems to me (as an outsider) these people make their own rules up as they go along, they report what they think will keep all this as low key as possible!! I am sad beyond words, frustrated and angry inside!! Thankyou to Laura, who never gives up, stays strong and documents what is actually happening..bringing the truth to the outside world and fighting the fight for these beautiful animals!!!

  7. Barbara Warner says:

    Just heartbreaking and the bloody feet are horrible.

  8. cfwarde says:

    Wow… The horses look exhausted from running in endless circles. Watching the video, I cheered for them when they made their escape… they’re so brave and smart. I am so angry that the BLM continues to contract this incompetent pilot. At the end of the video, there is a big bay that appears to be missing an ear? A beautiful horse… wish I could rescue him/her! Laura, thank you for keeping us informed… you too are brave and smart! 🙂

  9. Gretchen says:

    http://www.humanesociety.org …You’re doing incredible work! I included the website for the National Office and wondered if you communicate with them regularly and if they spread the word for you? Their office is in MD, probably close to Washington DC… I will try to connect with my local horse loving community and try and round up more support and followers for you!

    • Barbara Warner says:

      Unfortunately IMO the HSUS is not doing nearly enough to stop the abuse and wipe out of our wild horses and burros. They are promoting the use of more PZP when less than 17,000 wild horses are still free and are not working to get this TORTURE stopped –only decreased some. Most herds are no longer genetically viable and sustainable. Some of us have written to HSUS already.

  10. Louie Cocroft says:

    One of these “tomorrows” could well bring JUSTICE.

  11. Louie Cocroft says:

    This if from Grandma Gregg….well worth watching!


  12. cssssswv says:

    Please! WHO knows the correct phone # for the FAA(?), ie. Federal Flight Air & Aeronautics commission [correct name =?]
    To Report and DEMAND an immediate Investigation of this Pilot, Josh Helyer??
    I have seen many people who are Obviously Under-the-Influence of banned mind-altering substances,
    & Josh Helyer is surely exhibiting erratic Behavior, that (@least) SUGGESTS such influence,
    Clearly enough so–to warrant immediate grounding & substance plus psychiatric investigation!!
    Just think!–what if he were Flying–anything, anywhere Else? (Other than being closed screen of a pseudo-self-governing Agency of the US. Gov’t?
    I do know that IF he were Flying for the U.S. Air Force, there’d be NO hesitation to ground him, until appropriate exams completed.
    **who knows the phone #?? (I can’t find it)

    • cssssswv says:

      I meant: (Other than BEHIND closed screen of a pseudo-self-governing Agency of the US. Gov’t?)
      Actually, I think As Many of Us as Possible should CALL & demand such an Investigation, immediately!
      Do you agree???

  13. Louie Cocroft says:

    U.S. Department of Transportation
    Federal Aviation Administration
    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC 20591
    1-866-TELL-FAA (1-866-835-5322

    • Laura Leigh says:

      FAA only has jurisdiction to “public endangerment.” Complaints to FAA are currently being used to keep observers away. Unless we can get a Judge to declare these horses “public property,” bringing FAA in has the potential to hurt observation.
      Just FYI.

  14. Laura Leigh says:

    We have bad weather coming in. I’d like to be able to get a few things before I go back in. Donations have slowed as I know folks are giving to other projects (appreciated) right now. But I will need a better jack and I’d like to have an air compressor. This is the time of year (before the ground freezes solid) that folks get stuck and freeze.

  15. Jennifer Lamm says:

    Thank you to everyone and anyone that gives a care about the horses…. I am just appauled at the lack of compassion our government has for horses… but I am also elated at the people who try and stick up for them…… eventhough we are losing at the moment, I hope we some day prevail in the preservation of our american mustangs.

  16. Mar Wargo says:

    Take care out there!!

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