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News.bytesNews.bytes Extra, issue 377

Visitors meet gentled mustangs, take some home

The Bureau of Land Management's Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program rolled into Turlock March 21 and 22, as part of the Back Country Horsemen of California's statewide rendezvous.  Adopters took home 10 mustangs and two wild burros.

A group of yearling horses prances in the adoption pen, in front of visitors
Above, a group of yearlings prances for visitors in an adoption pen, while in the photo below, Blue, a BLM saddle horse, makes friends with adoption guests.  Blue, a former wild horse, is used by BLM horse wranglers in a variety of jobs, including sorting horses at the Litchfield Corrals and at adoption events.
Blue, a BLM saddle horse, makes friends with adoption guests.

BLM mustang adopters were  in Turlock to help spread the word about the intelligence, trainability and loyalty of wild horses.  Volunteer Becky Delaney, (first photo below), led her halter-trained mustang in a parade during the opening ceremonies of the Back Country Horsemen's Rendezvous.  Her horse was auctioned (and adopted) in a Horsemen's fund raiser, bringing in $320.  Volunteer Dave Miller introduced his mustang, Chief, to event visitors as well (second photo).   Dave and Chief also walked in the Horsemen's parade.
Volunteer Becky Delaney smiles and waves to bystanders as she leads her halter-trained mustang in a parade during opening ceremonies.
The BLM's Dave Miller introduces his mount to a woman who pets the horse

Another success story was Shawnie Peters, a horse trainer from Janesville, Lassen County, who saw her halter-trained horse adopted by a Turlock area resident.  Below, Peters  introduces her horse, Ty, to adopter Will Bennett.  The mustang and new adopter got along fine right from the start.  Peters gentled the horse as part of the Mustang Heritage Foundation's Trainer Incentive Program, which offers $700  to those who gentle BLM mustangs and find adopters.   Trainers must apply to be accepted in the program.  More information is online at mustangheritagefoundation.org.

Shawnie Peters introduces her horse, Ty, to adopter Will Bennett.

Below, Lassen County horse trainer Thad Waltman works with a horse during the adoption event.  Thad offered free gentling and training tips for adopters and event visitors.  He showed how gentle training methods are key to winning the trust and cooperation of a wild horse.
Volunteer Dave Miller introduces his mustang, Chief, to event visitors

- Jeff Fontana, 3/09

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 377

Last updated: 04-07-2009