Alamo Herd Management Area
mapLocation: The Alamo Herd Management Area (HMA) lies in west central Arizona on lands adjoining Alamo Lake and portions of the Bill Williams, Santa Maria and Big Sandy rivers. This HMA can be reached by driving west from Wickenberg, Arizona on U.S. Highway 60 (about 50 miles toward Wenen, Arizona) and then north 30 miles on a paved county road toward Alamo Lake State Park.
 
Size: Bordered on the north by the Big Sandy HMA and on the west by the Havasu HMA, the Alamo contains some 341,000 acres of land.
 
Habitat: Wild burros roam freely throughout this area, which is largely steep, rock and rugged. The lower areas contain gentle slopes cut with broad sandy washes. Sonoran Desert vegetation, including palo verde and ironwood trees, plant themselves among the washes. Summers are hot with temperatures occasionally exceeding 120 degrees. Wild burros share this habitat with desert bighorn sheep, desert mule deer, coyotes, fox, jackrabbits and a variety of small desert mammals. Other animals making their homes here include the desert tortoise and several species of lizards and rattlesnakes. Overhead, the bald eagle and southwestern willow flycatcher can be spotted in the sky.

Program Information


Burro Information


History: Wild burros in this area are descendants of burros abandoned by early prospectors, miners and local rangers. Having evolved in the deserts of North Africa, burros adapted well to Arizona’s desert environment and flourished in the relatively lush Sonoran Desert. Large and thriving herds of burros were soon seen as a threat to other species in times of drought. To reduce the threat, local ranchers were issued government furnished ammunition during the droughts of the 1930s and 1950s to shoot burros. This helped relieve over-utilization of stressed vegetation and the severe competition for scarce water. 

A new water source was made available with the completion of Alamo Dam on the Bill Williams River in 1968. With a permanent water source, and protection through the Wild Horse and Burro Protection Act of 1971, the herd began to grow once again.

burroPopulation: Left alone in this remote region with few natural predators, the wild burro population here flourished to more than 1,000 animals by the mid-1970s. The first wild burro capture effort by the BLM in Arizona took place near Alamo Lake. In 1977, and again in 1979, nearly 900 animals were removed from this HMA, lowering the population to about 200. Today, the burro population is estimated to be about 305. 
 
Burros in this area are typically grey in color. During the hot summer months, the herd stays within two to three miles of water sources. When the weather cools, the burros tend to break up and scatter throughout the area.
 
Management: Wild burros living in the Alamo HMA are managed in an ecological balance within their habitat. This ensures there will be plenty of food and cover for the burros, as well as for other wildlife. The area must also be managed in a manner that continues to provide a quality riparian habitat for the endangered southwestern willow flycatcher. When vegetative monitoring studies show over-utilization of key plant species, some burros are relocated to other corral facilities. These burros then become available to the public through the BLM’s Adopt a Wild Horse or Burro Program.

  Lake Havasu Field Office 
2610 Sweetwater Avenue
Lake Havasu City, AZ 86406-9071
Phone: (928) 505-1200
Fax: (928) 505-1208
E-mail: LHFOWEB_AZ@blm.gov
Field Manager:  Kim Liebhauser
Hours:  8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., M-F