U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
|Diamond 30 Wild Horses|
About the Diamond HMA Complex Wild Horses
Condition of the Diamond HMA Wild Horses
During the 2013 gather, wild horse body condition was carefully documented. Wild horse body condition – especially mares and foals – was less than ideal due to lack of forage on the range. Most of the gathered Diamond HMA horses were showing ribs, back bone and hip bones and there was no forage left on the range to support them.
Why Release Gathered Wild Horses Back to the HMA?
The goal was to be able to release wild horses back to the HMA in case the Appropriate Management Level of 151 in the Diamond HMA was impacted by high mortality rates from poor body conditions and low forage availability. High mortality with the remaining wild horses on the range could have detrimental impacts to the future genetic diversity of the HMA and the Complex. Because of the poor condition of the horses and the rangeland, it was determined that no wild horses should be released back to the range at that time. The horses were thin, and with no forage left, it could mean months of continued weight loss and suffering until hoped for spring growth might provide much needed nutrients.
Why Aren’t the Diamond 30 Being Returned to the HMA?
The BLM returned to the HMA in the spring to monitor forage and water, and to conduct an inventory to document the existing wild horse population. If there had been high mortality, the wild horses and their offspring would be considered for release back to the HMA. If there had not been high mortality, and the population was close to the AML, the “Diamond 30” would not be released.
The genetics results for the 30 horses sampled from the Diamond HMA and an additional 25 samples from the Diamond Hills North HMA in the Complex indicate high genetic diversity of the horses with no signs of inbreeding. The report recommends future monitoring given the moderately low AML for the Complex and the number of low frequency variants at risk of future loss.
Diamond Complex Location and Topography
The Diamond Complex is located within Central Nevada within the Great Basin, north of Eureka, Nevada in Elko, Eureka and White Pine counties. The Diamond Complex consists of the Diamond Mountain Range and the Diamond Hills, Baily Mountain, Sadler Basin and Garcia Flat located north of the Diamond Range. The Complex is bordered in the south by U.S. Highway 50, on the east by State Highway 892 in Newark Valley and on the west by agricultural fields and the Diamond Valley playa.
|Last updated: 09-20-2013|
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