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Release Date: 08/26/13
Contacts: Chris Joyner, Public Affairs Specialist, (970) 210-2126    

Range Conditions and Wild Horse Population force BLM to gather 15- 25 wild horses from the Little Book Cliffs (08/23/13)

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management has refined its wild horse removal estimate and is scheduled to begin gathering 15 – 25 wild horses from the Little Cliffs Wild Horse Range Sept. 3 to conserve range conditions for horses. 
The BLM evaluated range conditions on Aug. 20 with assistance from a local wild horse volunteer group, Friends of the Mustangs.  Based on that evaluation, the BLM determined that 15 – 25 horses need to be removed from the range to maintain conditions for the wild horses and the range.  Horses to be removed will be five years old or younger.
“Current utilization is at or exceeding what healthy rangelands can sustain,” said Wayne Werkmeister, associate field manager for the BLM Grand Junction Field Office.  “We’ve not held a gather since 2007 because of favorable conditions and the success of fertility control.  By removing 15-25 horses we can provide better winter forage for the horses and give the vegetation an opportunity for recovery.”
The BLM has an established Appropriate Management Level of 90 to 150 horses for the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range.  Current numbers place herd population at approximately 155 horses.  Fertility controls began in 2002 cutting reproduction numbers nearly in half.  With the help of the Friends of the Mustangs, the BLM hopes to continue fertility controls to lessen the need for future gathers.  
This gather will employ a bait and water trapping technique not used before on this range.  The BLM will not use helicopters for this gather but will allow the horses to move into corrals enticed by food or water.  The BLM will periodically provide updates to the community and keep our website updated daily with gather information.  For more information please go to:
The BLM is now preparing for the gather by introducing food and water in select locations throughout the range. No horses will be gathered prior to the start of gather operations onSept. 3.  
For more information, contact Chris Joyner (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: 08-26-2013