Following this comment are eye witness emails reporting from Utah on the Sulphur Springs wild horse herd water crisis.
Throughout centuries, free roaming wild horses and burros had unfettered access to summer and winter ranges. Fencing and zoning the public domain have impeded their natural movement. This is a man made problem which threatens herds to the point of extinction and can be corrected.
Current law provides agency/citizen partnerships which may enable better management of local herds. Water could be developed or provided in accessible fenced locations where bands can be better monitored and even treated with birth control and culling if proven necessary.
Ranchers have done this for centuries and are currently hauling water to livestock where developed and natural water sources have dried up.
Supplemental feed is also option. This gives local communities and advocates more financial incentives to participate in on- hands management with BLM oversight. We believed this is similar to the pilot program initially offered to our Coyote Canyon group by BLM Tom Pogacnik.
A review of 1971 ranges by operation of law, is necessary and imperative to providing sufficient habitat to ensure genetic viability to our Heritage Herds. Your comments are welcome.
Coyote Canyon Caballos d'Anza
In a continuing series of emails Robert Hayden sent to Kathleen Hayden from Utah, we get a glimpse of issues facing the BLM mustangs and the local people coming to their aid...
August 17, 2009
"Last minute update:
Talked to Ladd Davies this am and he checked the horses water Sun pm and the horses had been at the solar panel and the bottom tank was almost empty and the top was 2/3 full. These I think are 5 or 6 hundred gallon tanks. Ladd thought the 350 we put over at Jeb Spring entrance was in a bad spot and should be moved closer if you continue to use it at Jeb. He did not go into Jeb but will later today and I will get an update tonight. He called Scott at BLM and gave him an update on his answering service. He is going to call Gale Bennet this am and talk things over with him. Ladd thinks we should stop messing around and move in about a half a dozen of Baker's Ranch's 1000 gal tanks that are not being used and have their water truck, which he has agreed to do, and fill them and put them at the solar tanks where the horses are used to watering. If they find out after pulling the pump they need parts, the horses will not have water for a week or so."
August 15, 2009
"Met the BLM this am at Ladd Davies Ranch. Scott from the Delta Office came with a 500 gallon tank and flat bed truck and we hauled water to the solar panels and filled the two 500 or 600 gallon tanks. Then we took a 300 gallon tank up the canyon toward Jeb Spring and placed it on a horse trail near the road going into Jeb and filled the tank. We then went in another mile or so to Jeb Spring and filled the tank that was barely running. Lots of Elk and horse tracks. Going in we saw two groups of mustangs. One herd of about a half a dozen, a few young ones and all were watched over by one old grullo stallion. Another group of three duns, one young, one mare, one stallion. Did see another lone stallion. All were away from the water and grazing, looks like our hauling of water is paying off.
Scott said the well pump at the solar is to be pulled and repaired on Wed. Chet and I will leave for Calif one day late, tomorrow."