PRESS RELEASE: BLM Forced to Drop Mare Sterilization Plans Again in Legal Action Brought by CAES

Oregon Pregnant Wild Mares Get Another Reprieve in Appeal Filed by CAES Against the Brutal, Outdated Experiments BLM Planned to Perform.

©CAES 2018
Photo Courtesy Wild Horse Observers Association with Permission of David Bueno.

BLM has Finally asked the Interior Board of Land Appeals to allow them to have jurisdiction back over the Decision of Record they made earlier in 2018 to sterilize wild mares. The IBLA, yesterday granted that decision because BLM stated in their request to the IBLA that they no longer plan to do the experiments. But, this win is likely only temporary.

While there were other lawsuits filed in court against BLM’s brutal plans, CAES filed an appeal with the IBLA because we feared the lawsuits, even if won, would not stop these experiments from happening in the future.

BLM has clearly expressed in both their motion to the IBLA and in the ongoing Kathrens et al lawsuit that they plan to write a new Environmental Assessment are try again. CAES filed a motion asking the IBLA to only grant this motion to vacate and remand the decision back to BLM IF they did so with prejudice so the plans could not be recreated.

The Kathrens et al lawsuit found a flaw in First Amendment Rights to watch the experiments in their entirety, but BLM in their request for clarification on a preliminary injunction filed in that lawsuit made it very clear that BLM intends to fix the problem with the EA and issue a new one to do these experiments. Notably, while there were requests for cameras in instant case, there were no requests for scopes that would actually make the surgery visible if not safer due to the procedure itself and the large arm and hand of the (blind) vet and allow view of the interior of the mares which is being sliced, torn and ripped apart without being sown up and without seeing any tears in the vaginal tract itself or the foal itself.

We urged the IBLA not to allow BLM to continually proceed with this process of issuing a Decision of Record and then changing their minds, which avoids a court ruling on the experiments, and then come out with a ‘new and improved’ plan down the road. The IBLA denied our request to do so with prejudice claiming that would constitute an advisory opinion.

BLM will fix the issues of the superficial 1st Amendment suit (letting people view, video, etc. the experiments). And they will try this again. This has been a pattern of the BLM since they first attempted to do these experiments in 2016. CAES filed a similar administrative appeal in 2016, and the result was the same thing after CAES won legal standing BLM backed down. Only this time, the day after we filed our main brief in the case against their plans, they backed down again.

  • On Nov. 2, the Cloud Foundation announced their preliminary injunction win, however, court documents showed that the BLM had only stated that at some unspecified date, they would ask the IBLA for a vacate and remand in the CAES Appeal. However, the BLM did not ask for a remand until the day after CAES filed their Appeal Brief on Nov 13th at noon.
  • Nov. 14, at 3:30 p.m., the BLM, in the CAES Appeal, asked the IBLA to Vacate and Remand, stating their intent to cancel the plan,
  • November 13, at 7:47 p.m. federal court judge in the Kathrens et al. case issued a preliminary injunction,
  • November 26 the IBLA gave BLM permission to abandon their plans ending the CAES Appeal with a win for the horses…this time.
  • The Federal Court Case is not over with Kathrens et al., however since the BLM canceled the plans during our legal action that court case is now moot.

PLEASE consider making a donation to CAES to keep us fighting in cases like this for the protection of American wild and domestic horses. CAES is a national 5013 c3 non-profit corporation. (see yellow donate button on upper right of any CAES web page).

Matching Funds for Donations Offered by Facebook and PayPal

Fundraiser started by CAES board member Val Cecama-Hogsett. Please go to the Citizens Against Equine Slaughter Facebook page and make your donation to continue to support our work for American horses.


Want to join me in supporting a good cause? This #GivingTuesday I’m raising money for Citizens Against Equine Slaughter and your contribution will make an impact, whether you donate $5 or $500. Every little bit helps. And on Giving Tuesday Nov 27, Facebook and PayPal will match a total of $7 Million in donations. Thank you for your support. I’ve included information about Citizens Against Equine Slaughter below.

📷 This is what true, grassroots, unified, advocacy looks like. We at CAES have pulled it together, we combined funding of different organizations, we all work to do whatever we can to support legal cases (research, writing, delivering documents by volunteers), we split up tasks or issues that need to be addressed so we aren’t all working on the same issue, and that makes us more efficient and more effective. We pulled together the boots on the ground teams to get provide water and documentation needed to accomplish our goals, YOUR goals. We continue to push for legislation at state and federal levels that will stop the slaughter, euthanasia of healthy horses, and continued theft and destruction of habitats. We coordinate with our state offices to provide a unified message to legislators, and we coordinate with our sister organizations to have that unified message represent all of us.
CAES cannot support unity with large organizations that do not involve grassroots organizations, that do not provide open transparent and clear goals. Organizations that will not join the legal battles to stop euthanasia of healthy horses, to stop sterilization of wild mares and abortions of unborn foals. We cannot support organizations that pretend they are doing these things by publishing false narratives to their supporters, all in an effort to generate that income that pays their salaries. They too are subsidized by the government, and we have been infiltrated by and harmed by them in the past which led to a less effective fight for the horses in the end. So what some see as an unwillingness to work with others is really a safeguarding of our process and sometimes a kind of trade secret, to providing the real protections we all fight for American Native Horses.
–CAES and our state branches: Heber Wild Horses Freedom Preservation Alliance in AZ and the National Wild Horse & Burro Administration (formerly Oregon Wild Horse & Burro Association) started a program called Water for Western Wildlife working with BLM and the Forest Service to haul water into wild horse areas for all wildlife.
– CAES fought for an end to wild mare sterilization experiments and won (Press Release coming out on November 27, 2018).
– CAES is still fighting for the return of horses to the Muddy Creek in Utah, where BLM took more horses than legally allowed.
-CAES was a partner in getting the release of the Alto wild horse herd in NM.
-CAES filed a Congressional complaint against a sitting US Congressman who lied to Congress regarding wild horses.
– CAES filed a veterinary complaint and got the OVMEB in OR to investigate the man who has performed experiments on pregnant wild mares.
-CAES continues to push sponsors of the SAFE Act to do more than signing on as co-sponsors and get the bill passed.
-CAES advocates for the Essential 4h, horses, habitats and humane handling using what we coined as GROUPA (Grassroots, Resolute, Organized, Unified, Advocacy) where YOUR voice matters, no one collects a salary with your donations, and we evaluate the most cost-efficient way to achieve each goal. All volunteer…all the time, and you can be part of the GROUPA.

Reports of Horses Shot in Oregon


What we know so far…

26 November 2018


Last week a blog post was brought to our attention about 290 horses that were allegedly shot and piled under juniper branches. The post went on to give map coordinates, and some specific information we have been able to use to investigate.

We contacted the original source of that story, other animal welfare organizations and a county commissioner in that area. We are all still in communication and we are still investigating the matter.

What we know is that the herd is part of the Starwalt horses that were indeed once used by the Longview Ranch. Our source said they run with the Murderers Creek wild horse herd, however, there is a substantial distance between the 2 locations so this is doubtful.

However, part of a federally protected herd or not they are wild horses, and if not federally owned then they are owned by the state of Oregon. And whether federal or state-owned it is illegal to shoot them.

The original blog post alleges 290 horses are dead, but without any photo evidence or actually finding the remains we cannot verify that. We believe from our sources that there are fewer horses in that area than 290.

The ranch is owned by an out of state person, and the horses are reportedly being shot by the ranch manager at the request of the owner. The horses are being blamed for lack of forage for the owner’s cattle. The horses are on both private and federal land as this is a checkerboard area.

We are continuing to investigate and will keep you updated as we find out what the truth is out there.


Sea Lions, the Wild Horses of the Oceans


©CAES2018 Val Cecama-Hogsett

When speaking with someone about a recent news story in Oregon concerning the management of sea lions and salmon, I began to make a correlation to this problem and the wild horses and their predators that we fight to protect.

A recent story about the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife getting the green light to kill sea lions for eating salmon brought outrage to many of our followers on social media, and several in Oregon who were torn about the need to protect the salmon, versus killing a few seal lions which a taking over an area where they were not normally residents.


The sea lions discovered that manmade fish ladders are a great place to sit at the bottom of and feed. The ladders were built to deal with the problem dams created for salmon returning to spawning grounds. The fish could not climb the dam walls, so ladders were created to allow passage to the fish. Thus creating a smorgasbord for the sea lions.


In trying to explain the cycle I try to educate people about, which is man interferes, and creates an unexpected consequence, therefore must interfere again, and round and round we go.


When I compare this issue to the issues we deal with in the management of wild horses it is the same manmade problem, with scapegoating animals natural behaviors or responses to manmade issues, and always in favor of making someone a profit.

In this issue with salmon and sea lions, it is the fisherman who complains about the fish population decline, thus decrease in his profit. In the issue of wild horses, it is the rancher who complains, there is less forage so he can put fewer cows or sheep on the land, thus decrease in his profit.


Wild horses also get blamed for fish population declines. The claim is that they ruin stream banks, allowing erosion and widening of streams and rivers, which makes more shallow water and thus warmer water…etc etc. Then the question becomes ‘how was this not an issue in the past….”A question that has to be answered because otherwise, MAN might be to blame.

If you have ever watched the video on the results of wolves being reintroduced to Yellowstone you know that overpopulation of any grazing animals will cause these things to happen, it is a cascade of effects caused by a loss of predators, then the trophic cascade of what happens, things return to a ‘normal’ state when the predators species are reintroduced.

In the oceans we have a very serious decline in whale and shark species, therefore we have fewer predators for sea lions. In wild horses, we kill predators, wolves, mountain lions, and bears, and thus fewer predators of wild horses.

Then we create more problems by building fish ladders, or dinner plates for sea lions, creating an unnatural environment. We put out feeding stations for big game that are hunted and use water for commercial livestock who are being raised in an unnatural environment.

Fisherman kills predators of sea lions, ranchers kill predators of wild horses. Fisherman sees more sea lions, but now they are eating their fish (profits). Ranchers see more horses, but now they are drinking scarce water and eating scarce forage, causing smaller numbers of livestock permitted on the land thus affecting their profits.


So what is the response…remove sea lions and kill them. Remove wild horses and (if the law permitted) kill them.

Is this management? I do not believe so. I believe this is responding to each new crisis as it arises or is discovered. It is not science-based, nor is it forward planning.

The fact is humans caused the problem for the sea lions and do we honestly have the right to then impose a death sentence?

For horses…are they even overpopulated?

Is it truly commercial livestock that is overpopulated on our western public lands and horses being blamed?

Would the lands recover like they did in Yellowstone if we stop killing apex predators?

Would the underground water, and thus groundwater levels recover if we stop the overuse by the commercial livestock, and livestock crop productions on these arid lands?

When do humans stand up and take accountability for their actions?  We believe that the answer is:

When profit is no longer the only priority that matters.


Referenced articles:

When will we realize that the beauty and peace humans receive from nature are more valuable than the commercial profits of corporations?


Other references and good reads:


Asuncion Island Sea lions & baby Cormorants from whale magic tours on Vimeo.


  • “Following the reintroduction of previously extirpated gray wolves Canis lupus into Yellowstone National Park, a spatially patchy recovery of woody browse species (e.g., aspen Populus tremuloides, willow Salix spp., cottonwood Populus spp.) has begun, indicating that large predator recovery may represent an important restoration strategy for ecosystems degraded by wild ungulates.”Large predators and trophic cascades in terrestrial ecosystems of the western United States Author links open overlay panel Robert L.BeschtaWilliam J.Ripple College of Forestry, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, United States Received 8 January 2009, Revised 21 May 2009, Accepted 4 June 2009, Available online 4 August 2009.

Update on Congress’s (BLM) Spay Experimentation on Wild Mares


BREAKING NEWS: Update on Congress’s SPAY Experimentation on Wild Mares.
Yesterday, a consortium of Groups who filed a lawsuit to WATCH the illegal Spay experimentation on conscious pregnant wild mares, announced that they had “WON” “VICTORY“. 
However, in a motion filed today by these same groups (Kathrens et. al.), an attempt was made to preserve the group’s so far, verbal temporary stay.
In the group’s motion, the following statement was made:
 “. . . BLM has not in fact actually vacated the challenged decision, nor even provided any definitive time frame in which it will do so.”
In their 2016 case to WATCH the BLM’s Spay experimentation the following was stipulated (understood and agreed to) by both parties.
          “. . . Once a Decision Record has been appealed to the IBLA, BLM loses jurisdiction over the Decision Record. . .  “
          “(if a timely notice of appeal is properly filed, the office issuing the decision loses jurisdiction over the case and has no further authority to take any action on the subject matter of the appeal until jurisdiction over it is restored by Board action disposing of the appeal) . . .”
Hence, the BLM Decision of Record IS still operative, until the  BLM asks the IBLA for a vacate and remand order in our CAES appeal and it is granted.
CAES is still working hard on the Appeal with our next brief due to the IBLA in coming days.
We will continue to celebrate whenever and however these illegal torture experiments are actually ended. When and If the IBLA does indeed actually cancel these illegal experiments, we will let you know!

CAES Will Gain Protection for Wild Mares Again, No Spay Experiments!

BLM Announces Plans to Ask the IBLA to Remand the DOR and Cancel Spay Experiments

BLM is Frustrated, to Say the Least

©CAES 07 November 2018

Yesterday we filed the latest round with the Interior Board of Land Appeals (IBLA) in our case to stop the brutal sterilization experiments on pregnant wild mares in Oregon.

In our Answer to the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM’s) latest round, Citizens Against Equine Slaughter (CAES) allegations were that the decision made was not following proper procedures per National Environmental Policy Act including:

– There was no Environmental Impact Study (EIS) and no appropriate EIS to tier (refer) to.

– The choice of ovariectomy over other alternatives including native PZP was arbitrary and capricious and cruel for the sake of cruelty.

– The cost analysis to support this arbitrary decision was based on a fraudulent and out of date characterization of PZP as requiring roundup and branding thereby artificially and fraudulently inflating PZP costs. (Native PZP is no longer experimental since 2012 when it was registered by the EPA in order to allow feasible on range management per the EPA label in 2012.

– That the BLM was ignoring both federal animal cruelty laws regarding experimentation (AWA) as well as state and local animal cruelty laws regarding animals and sentients.

That in itself should cause the IBLA to rule in our favor but we also asked for a time extension because BLM is blocking Freedom Of Information Act requests for documents surrounding the deaths of horses gathered from the Warm Springs Herd Management Act.

While CAES did also state that there was public disgust and extreme controversy requiring an EIS, CAES did not file a case to only watch the illegal torture of sentient beings.

Today the BLM announced to a federal court, Kathrens et al. v Zinke et al. (3:18cv1691) that they intend to ask the IBLA for a redaction of their Decision of Record (DOR). This was exactly what the result of our 2016 case was.

BLM cannot cancel a DOR while the DOR is under appeal (our case is that appeal) with the IBLA.

BLM has asked the Portland court to delay entering the preliminary injunction because they plan to ask for remand in our case and that will make the Portland court case moot.

Before BLM can rescind the portion of the Decision Record relating to the spay study itself, the Interior Board of Land Appeals must first vacate and remand the decision record to BLM. (emphasis added) See, e.g., Benton C. Cavin, 166 IBLA 78, 81-82 (2005) (after appeal to the Interior Board of Land Appeals, “BLM has no jurisdiction unilaterally to reverse a decision under appeal and grant relief”). BLM will file a motion to vacate and remand the Decision Record with the Interior Board of Land Appeals in the coming days.

Because BLM will soon rescind the portion of the Decision Record relating to the spay
study, Plaintiffs’ claims will soon be moot and there will be no need for an order relating toPlaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction.” (emphasis added)

“Therefore, Defendants respectfully request that the Court stay entry of Plaintiffs’ proposed order, or any other order on the motion for preliminary injunction, for 14 days, until November 21, 2018. Defendants will submit a status report on November 21, 2018, informing the Court of their progress toward rescinding the Decision Record.”

2018-11-07 (11)

While the Kathrens et al makes the claim that these experiments are socially unacceptable. CAES asserted in our case that they are illegal.

CAES thanks all of you who have supported us, the little fish, in an ocean of sharks! You made this happen, all of you keep us going with your support and love. We’re in this for the horses, not the media, not the credit or fame, but the truth and the law that will save our horses. Thank you from us at CAES, and from the horses and their unborn foals.

“Unity is only effective when you are fighting the same battles” – TJB™