A herd of wild horses galloped and helicopters mercilessly pursued them. However, it is difficult for mares to protect their cubs. “There was a little black foal that fell behind his group,” Grace Kuhn, director of public relations for the American campaign Wild Horse, told Dodo. “The group was chased away by a helicopter.” “The foal sometimes had trouble running with this large herd from a quarter mile or half a mile behind.”
Observers from the American Wild Horses Campaign witnessed the scene in the Wyoming Red Desert, which covers approximately 700,000 acres of state land designated as wild horse habitat. However, the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) removes thousands of wild horses from the West each year in this way. Bronco exhausted riding a helicopter before being arrested. Some horses died from injuries or extreme pressure when cornering.
“Coals are definitely the most vulnerable on the shooting range when helicopters arrive, because they have to travel very long distances and often their bodies can’t handle them,” Kuhn said.
In the latter case, it was too much for the calf. “At some point his mother noticed he wasn’t with her,” Kuhn added, “and she bravely turned her back on her group and waited for her child to catch up with her.” “The helicopter kept moving, trapping the herd. The mare stayed with the foal that had just stopped. He was completely debilitated. And he’s small.”
It was also very hot that day, about 94 degrees Fahrenheit, which made life more difficult for both the pony and the mother. “There are standards that BLM has to follow,” Kuhn said. You can’t drive a horse above 95 degrees, but it was 94 degrees.” “It’s hot in Wyoming, so it’s true that I’m running several miles at a time with these little animal babies in the extreme heat in Wyoming.” The helicopters drove back to the ranch and returned to the mother and baby, Kuhn said: “Our observers watched the helicopters go back in pairs. “If you look at the video, it is clear that the mother is under stress. She is fine and she is working hard to take care of her child. “You can tell by the way she decides what to do next.”
When the couple refused to move towards the helicopter, two wranglers on horseback arrived to catch them. As a means of means, the mare attacked one of the panelists on horseback and drove him away from the colt.” “I have never seen anything like this happen while I was doing this. The mares tried to protect their foals in this way.”
“Instead, they tied the mares with ropes. And you can see how she resists. And then they push her into her trap,” Kuhn added. When the panelists returned to pick up the foal, the cub was so exhausted that it didn’t even need to be tethered with a lasso. Instead, they took him to the ranch to join the rest of the herd. The observer went to the makeshift kennel to see how the calf and mother were doing, but saw nothing. “Government contractors [doing the work] are putting plastic fences around the ranch so they can’t see inside,” Kuhn said. But when the foal was lying on the ground, the observer took a good look at him.
“He looked completely debilitated and ill.” Kuhn said. “We were told that the vet examined him and that he was so hot that he got drunk.” The next day, tragedy struck. The horse was found dead on the ranch. The stress and physical labor at the time of the raid were harsh on his small body.
Although wild horses are protected by the U.S. federal government, BLM points out that they should be removed because the horses overgraze and damage the environment. But animal welfare advocates believe the attack is to protect ranchers because wild horses compete with cattle for pasture. Each year, BLM hires government contractors to lock up thousands of wild horses and donkeys in 11 states in the western United States. The goal of this year’s raid is to permanently remove 9,898 wild horses from government lands.
However, such raids are very difficult for horses. Horses are often injured, sick or injured. This is especially true for ponies, such as dead ponies trying to follow the herd.
“Deaths in raids are common, but nine horses have already been killed during this raid, five of them foals,” Kuhn said. “Three foals died from capture shock, which was essentially a run to death. This is caused by the animal being stressed or by excessive exertion. Another cub was killed after breaking a leg, and another cub died from a previously broken leg, which was driven for miles.”
Unfortunately, such deaths are not uncommon. Recently, the Biblical Springs complex in southern Utah and Four horses were euthanized in a raid on the Broomstick Area (HMA). Others may be injured after being hit by a helicopter directly against a barbed wire fence. Some horses jumped over the fence, while others hit the fence and fell badly to the ground.
“It’s just a brutal program,” Kuhn said. “We say to the Wyoming manager, ‘What’s going on? You are driving this horse too hard. All these babies are dying. “According to the animal welfare program, BLM must … move the helicopter as fast as the slowest animal … because this is what is happening with young animals. Their bodies are in danger.”
The surviving horses were taken to an overcrowded containment that looked like a livestock farm. Some horses have been lucky enough to be adopted, but most will remain in these facilities for years to come. In the past, the government even sent more horses to slaughterhouses in Canada and Mexico, but the plan was recently canceled.
These raids not only hurt horses, Kuhn said, but also the people trying to protect them.
But she believes the public can change the fate of these horses for the better. “BLM programs shouldn’t be like this and the pups shouldn’t die,” Kuhn said. “There are solutions that BLM can implement now to keep wild horses and families together that are very poorly managed and do not cause these unnecessary deaths.”