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Hundreds of Wild Horses in California Set for Roundup, In Hopes of Saving Wildlife

The US Forest Service is set to roundup 1,000 wild horses from the Modoc National Forest.


The gather is set to begin October 10, will last approximately 30 days and will target wild horses from the Devil’s Garden Plateau Wild Horse Territory inside the Modoc National Forest.


Over ten million Americans and 18 national organizations, including sportsmen, state and local governments, resource management specialists, professional land managers, livestock operators, and others are all in favor of the commonsense management of horses and burros.


This round-up is a result of the prescribed 2013 Devil’s Garden Plateau Wild Horse Territory Management Plan that address the impacts on aquatic resources, wildlife, grazing, and traditional cultural practices. Currently, there are approximately 4,000 wild horses roaming on the plateau, which is well over the appropriate management levels, estimated to be between 206-402 horses. By reducing the population of wild horses, it will allow the range and riparian conditions to recover. By doing so, this will support overall wild horse herd health by reducing competition for food, water, and habitat and allow wildlife to prosper on the Devil’s Garden Plateau.


According to the Sacramento Bee, the American Wild Horse Campaign called on the Forest Service to make only incremental removals of horses “so that humane placement of horses can be assured.” “With a population growth rate of 20-25%, 800-1000 wild horses will be born on the Devil’s Garden this year making these small removals negligible.” Said Laura Snell, Modoc County Farm Advisor.


Of the estimated 1,000 horses being rounded-up, 700 horses who are under the age of ten, pregnant mares, or mare and foal pairs, will be sent to the BLM Litchfield corrals and available for adoption through the BLM. If you are interested in adopting a Devil’s Garden wild horse from the BLM Litchfield corrals please visit https://www.blm.gov/adoptahorse/ for more information and begin filling out an adoption form found here, https://www.blm.gov/sites/blm.gov/files/4710-010.pdf .


Horses over the age of ten will be held for thirty days at the Double Devil Wild Horse Corral on the Devil’s Garden. There will be somewhere from 125-175 older horses available. Horses will receive processing including vaccines and gelding. These horses are available for adoption of $125 or sale with limitations for $25. If you are interested in taking home one of these horses, please fill out an application found here, https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd597076.pdf, scan it, and email it to modoc_info@fs.fed.us.


After thirty days, sale without limitation will begin and buyers can purchase up to 36 horses for as low as a $1 apiece. This allows trainers who are willing to train large quantities of horses a business opportunity. Several trainers have already stepped up committing to some of these horses. Horses can also be sold to sanctuaries, become ranch stock horses, packing horses, or to buyers that may send them to slaughter. All buyers sign an application that states that these horses will not be sold for human consumption which is the California law. The wild horse and burro act states “In general. Any excess animal or the remains of an excess animal shall be sold if- (A) the excess animals is more than 10 years old.” Horses ten years of age and older horses are rarely adopted out in long term holding facilities. If you are interested in buying Devil’s Garden wild horses without limitations, an application will be available later in November.



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