The daily gather statistics are updated as far as 5/12 of the Cold Creek Wild Horse Herd. This day the Forest Service caused the death of a 3-day old filly.
The Forest Service has changed information, including the beginning date of the gather. Residents in the area have been reaching out to CAES and sharing photos and videos of horses that look really good, and also photos of these horses that Forest Service is showing of thin horses.
These are the statistics posted for the 12th of May 2018.
Animals gathered: 28 (15 Studs, 11 Mares, and 2 Foals)
Animals shipped: 24
Total Deaths Cumulative (#): 2
Acute (#): 1
Chronic/Pre-existing (#): 1
05/12/18: Chronic pre-existing 14-year-old black mare. BCS 1.
05/12/18: Three day old bay filly humanly euthanized for acute injury.
When you have a 14-year-old horse with a pre-existing condition that condition should be explained in these reports. We have long disagreed with removing a horse that is blind if they have been getting around and are healthy there is no reason to remove or euthanize them. That can be the same with a wild horse that may have had an injury, like a broken bone, that heals wrong, but they are surviving and in no apparent pain. These horses should not be removed, but it seems to be a case of any horse they can find a reason to get rid of they do.
Here are the definitions of both ‘acute’ and pre-existing the Forest Service gives:
A death labeled as “acute” is when an animal dies or is euthanized due to acute injuries or medical conditions brought about by the gather and removal process including those that occur during capture, sorting and holding at the gather site. This term will include animals that die for known or unknown reasons thought to be related to gather activities.
A death labeled as “chronic/pre-existing” is when an animal dies or is euthanized for reasons related to chronic or pre-existing conditions such as body condition, lameness, serious physical defects, etc. This term will include animals that are euthanized for conditions not brought about by the gather activity.
The death of this filly is a horrible incident that did not have to happen. These horses could have been managed on the range and the Forest Service could have worked with community members who offered to supply hay or whatever the horses needed. Instead, they have decided to zero out or remove every horse on the preserve. All this without one answer on how there are several hundred elk, and deer on the preserve that are healthy, not skinny.
The BLM and Forest Service jointly manage the preserve and the horses. This emergency is only one of several in 22 years. To CAES a 22-year emergency is not management. This gather clearly could have been avoided, but instead, the 2 agencies wait and watch until horses are so thin they can remove them and call it an emergency.
We recognize that this is likely part of the proof needed by wild horse haters who want the wild horse gone. They have for a few years in a row launched a massive pr campaign claiming that this is the norm for wild horse herds in the west. We know differently, but this situation will be exploited to try and prove the lies and pass a law to remove all but 26 thousand wild horses, a number that will leave the herds so small they will not be genetically viable.