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Release Date: 07/27/12
Contacts: Christopher B Joyner, BLM Public Affairs Specialist, (970) 210-2126    

Friends of the Mustangs Turns Thirty (07-26-12)

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management plans to recognize, Saturday, the 30th Anniversary of the Friends of the Mustangs during a celebration marking the group’s birthday.  

The volunteer group is celebrating thirty years of service during a private celebration at the Museum of the West, Whitman Building beginning at 2 p.m.

The 501 (c) (3) nonprofit was created in 1982 by a small group of citizens interested in the Little Book Cliffs wild horse herd.  “It’s a huge success to make it thirty years”, says Georgia Manus, president, Friends of the Mustangs.  “It’s phenomenal to have the level of success we’ve enjoyed.”  According to Manus, the success of the organization can be directly attributed to the hard work of members and the close partnership with the BLM.  “The relationship between the BLM and Friends of the Mustangs benefits the herd and the wildlife in the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range.”

Based upon the nonprofit’s mission statement, Friends of the Mustangs is organized to promote the welfare and awareness of mustangs in particular, and to assist the BLM in the maintenance and protection of mustangs, including the Little Book Cliffs wild horse herd and range.  The volunteer members of the organization assist the BLM in multiple projects to maintain Appropriate Management Level in the herd.  AML’s are set by the BLM using multiple criteria that best manage wild horse herds in designated management areas.  The management level attempts to achieve sustainable target numbers that allow horses, wildlife and other uses to successfully coexist.

The Friends of the Mustangs has worked closely with the BLM since the group’s inception through a memorandum of understanding.  The group provides, on an annual basis, many tasks on the Range including fence, spring and trail maintenance; population counts; and tracking condition of horses and reseeding.  Efforts off of the Range include adoption compliance checks and participating in horse expos, parades and open houses. The group is also highly engaged and provides a critical component in administering fertility drugs that helps the herd numbers remain in balance with the ecology. Rangeland Management Specialist, James “Jim” R. Dollerschell said, “All of these efforts ensure healthy wild horse on health rangelands and good homes for wild horses that are adopted. I believe this is the longest tenured partnership with BLM in the Grand Junction Field Office.  It is definitely a success story within the volunteer program and a bright spot in the wild horse program.”

Note to media: The celebration is a non-formal event open to invited guests and to members of the media.  If you are a member of the media and you wish to attend, please contact Chris Joyner BLM public affairs specialist at 970 210-2126.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

  2815 H Road      Grand Junction, CO 81506  

Last updated: 07-27-2012