National groups team up to spare horses


National organizations working to save mustangs are trying to help find homes for wild horses that will be rounded up at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota and sold at auction.

Forum News Service, AgWeek, September 4, 2013

Unknown-4MEDORA, N.D. — National organizations working to save mustangs are trying to help find homes for wild horses that will be rounded up at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota and sold at auction.

The Cloud Foundation, based in Colorado Springs, Colo., and Legacy Mustang Preservation, based in Louisa, Va., have joined forces in Operation Badlands Mustang Rescue, with volunteers spreading the word of the Sept. 28 auction in Wishek of more than 100 horses in a campaign to spare them from slaughter.

The groups have pledged to buy as many as 24 of the horses.

“We’re just trying to provide the safety net so none of these animals get bought by the kill buyers,” says Ginger Kathrens, executive director of The Cloud Foundation.

Horse advocates earlier started Facebook campaigns in the hopes of placing the horses with caring buyers. Advocates have tracked the park’s herd for years and keep a registry of each horse and its lineage. They say that after the last roundup in the park, in 2009, eight of the 77 horses auctioned off ended up at slaughterhouses.

The park maintains a demonstration herd of what it calls feral horses to commemorate the wild horses that roamed the badlands when Theodore Roosevelt ranched in the area during the 1880s. Park officials say the herd has grown to more than 200 animals — beyond the ideal size for the park of fewer than 100 — and must be thinned. The park also plans to launch a horse birth control experiment during the roundup.

The involvement of the two mustang organizations will add significantly to the social media campaigns working to find buyers for the park horses, says Marylu Weber, who has tracked the horses in the park for almost 15 years.

“It is a huge deal,” she says. “Ginger Kathrens is probably the face and the voice of wild horses in the world because of what she’s doing for wild horses.”

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AUTHOR: Jerry Finch
  • Rachael Bannister

    You know this horse killing thing is way beyond comprehension to me.
    Why has the Government decided that horse killing is a really good thing.They changed the campaign slogan from negelcted old sick and lame when that was proven a fallacy and the public didn’t bu into it to now wild horses are no longer Mustangs they are feral animals and need to be irradicated because they are over running the west by the hundreds of thousands.
    BIG AG MEAT GROWERS OIL and MINING are the bottomline here not the Horse or the Will of the people in this country.Really a sad state of affairs.Only YOU can be the voice of these magnificent creatures.Are you going to do nothing are will you take a stand for them?Silence and inaction is condoning

    September 4, 2013
  • Monika Courtney

    It wil never end, meaning the initiative of those in charge to truly prioritize human and sensible on the range management that is fair and sustainable is on the back burner list. The transparency is still obscured with much misleading the public and accommodating the welfare ranchers or hunters, for whose cattle or sheep water guzzlers can be brought to range without any problems. The recent push for sterilization is a disgrace and reminds of sick auschwitz experiments. The NAS report may also be a clever tool to push for agendas not supported in the best interest for the wild horses and burros, as the BLM continues much to ignore real solutions on the table and crafts propaganda while obliterating herds. The scape goating as a priority by agencies, who otherwise have no problem with pushing of agendas must stop.

    September 4, 2013
  • Jan Schultz

    Without slaughter – what would the government do? I think we are seeing with these roundups and auction sales that the government has been in the bad business of breeding horses for slaughter all this time.

    September 4, 2013
  • apatchett

    This is beyond my comprehension. This roundup and the one in the Sheldon Refuge. That means 100’s of horses will be going to slaughter and the BLM tells the american public they care what happens to these wild horses. What a joke! How does the 80% of Americans get it across to the government to leave these horses alone?

    September 4, 2013
  • Nancy B

    If the powers that be truly cared (even a little bit) about the fate of the horses rounded up, “killer buyers” would not be permitted to bid against any of the ligitamate horse rescues attempting to save wild horses (or any horse for that matter).

    September 4, 2013
  • Kathleen Hayden

    The area was designated the Roosevelt Recreation Demonstration Area in 1935. In 1946 it was transferred to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service as the Theodore Roosevelt National Wildlife Refuge. Yet USFWS have neglected to manage wild horses according to court finding in the following case, Suggest reading if you are interested in the continuity of this distinct populations segment of special status species
    Case 1984 Mt Legal v DOI 10th Circuit
    740 F.2d 792
    21 ERC 1759, 14 Envtl. L. Rep. 20,687

    September 4, 2013