Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Save Butterflies and set the Wild Horses Free

In an article in the North County Times, San Diego Supervisor Horn comments on the butterfly

This would be an opportune time for him to "ride in on a white horse" and lead the Board to declare the Coyote Canyon Wild Horses a Heritage Species. Please call him and write to request this. You may wish to use the information below.


(Kathleen Hayden)

To contact Bill Horn, San Diego County Supervisor, go to his website

From the Coyote Canyon Caballos d'Anza...

Coyote Canyon Caballos D’Anza

Wild Horses in Coyote Canyon

Colonial Spanish horses were first introduced in the coastal regions of San Diego County by settlement of missions and ranches. Further inland, Cahuillan pictographs of mounted Spaniards at the north end of Coyote Canyon (La Puerta) indicate the early expedition of Pedro Feges in 1772 or Anza in 1774.

This band of Native Americans made their home in Coyote Canyon and surrounding mountains along the NE Corner of San Diego and bordering Riverside counties. Long before western settlement a tributary of Coyote Canyon was named Horse Canyon after the residing herd. During the infamous 1851 Garra revolt and raid on Warner’ Ranch the Cahuilla’s added more cattle and horses to their Coyote Canyon herd. According to author Lester Reed, at the turn of the century, Native Wrangler Carlos Moreno referred to the canyon horses as “The Ranch Ramuda”. Bands of the herd ranged east and west as far as Beauty Mountain, into the surrounding mountain valleys. Indian ranching continued in the Canyon until the late 1970’s when California State Parks expanded the Anza Borrego Desert State Park. The Federal designated Coyote Canyon herd area was

“zeroed out” and the herd was removed by the park in 2003.

8-8-05 California Wild Horse and Burro Program Manager wrote .. when BLM began revisiting the Coyote Canyon horse situation, I also worked with the Solicitor's Office who said BLM erred in relinquishing control of the Coyote Canyon animals to State Parks) The Desert Protection Act pretty much gave control of the land and all resources to National Park Service
With the assistance of Ca. Senator Bill Morrow and BLM, Coyote Canyon Caballos d’Anza rescued four of the Wild Stallions with the BLM promise that the herd could be restored pending acquisition of an alternative sanctuary. In January 09 rare wild Spanish Foundation mares were acquired to re establish, maintain and preserve a unique gene pool.

As the only Heritage Herd of Spanish Horses in San Diego County, and the last wild herd in Southern California, the Coyote Canyon horses represent a vanishing element of our local pioneering landscape.

In 1971 Congress unanimously declared that wild free roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West that enrich the lives of the American People” They were to be managed on their historic and native ranges. By operation of law they are wild life. (Supreme Court seminal case, Kleppe v. New Mexico)

The Coyote Canyon herd’s vital legacy of cultural, educational, aesthetic, and inspirational benefits should be maintained as our heritage and the inheritance for future generations as supported by other Heritage Acts.

With the 1966 passage of the Nation Historic Preservation Act “Congress declared that the spirit and direction of the Nation are founded upon, and reflected in, its historic heritage.”

“Knowing and Understanding our Past, Inspiration For Future Generations, and providing a sense of roots and identity define motives for historic preservation. This includes Identification, documentation, curation, acquisition, protection, management, rehabilitation, restoration, stabilization, maintenance and reconstruction, or any combination of the foregoing activities. Grants are available to accomplish these noble endeavors

The Coyote Canyon Herd was sequestered for more than two centuries from other wild horse herds. As a result they evolved into a distinct population segment. This evolution meets the criteria of both state and federal statutes of endangered and threatened species.

“Endangered” when its survival and reproduction in the wild are in immediate jeopardy from one or more causes, including loss of habitat, change in habitat, over exploitation, predation, competition, disease, or other factors; or

“Rare” when either: Although not presently threatened with extinction, the species is existing in such small numbers throughout all or a significant portion of its range that it may become endangered if its environment worsens; or

The species is likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range and may be considered “threatened” as that term is used in the Federal Endangered Species Act.(ESA) This mandates emergency designation of native habitat known as ACECs,

BLM settled the native/feral argument stating "The issue of a wild horse as an invasive species is moot since the 1971 WHBA gave wild free-roaming horses "special" status based on their heritage of assisting man settle the "west”

Coyote Canyon Caballos d’Anza was formed as a 501 3c to acquire a permanent local herd area as sanctuary on Federal lands. This was overlooked in the 1971 inventory of their native ranges resulting in a defective land management plan.

The currently vacant Beauty Mountain grazing allotment and contiguous BLM acquisitions would correct the defection. It is within the newly passed California Desert and Mountain Heritage Act.

The 1945 California Riding and Hiking Trail, California’s first legislated trail, lies within the allotment and provides the public opportunity to experience this unique part of Ca. History. Restoration of the Coyote Canyon horses and the Trail would maintain both historic icons NOW, and into the future.

Please request that your Supervisors declare the Coyote Canyon Horses our local Heritage Herd to support an emergency NEPA to expedite restoration. Their support for the Beauty Mountain Sanctuary would facilitate multiple agency participation in land planning for the Beauty Mountain Sanctuary. Please also contact Senator Feinstein and Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack, Congressman Issa and Ca. State Senator Hollingsworth. Request an emergency NEPA for a permanent Coyote Canyon Wild Horse Herd Management Area.

On behalf of our wild horses, thank you.

For more information or donations for feed and vet care please contact

Robert and Kathleen Hayden

PO Box 236

Santa Ysabel, Ca 92070


Phone 760 782 3340

501 5

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