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January 4, 2006

Contact:  Kirsten Cannon 702-515-5057

Emergency Gather of 19 Wild Horses in Red Rock Proposed as Result of 2005 Wildland Fire

Las Vegas -- The proposed alternative allows for the mid-February 2006 gather to the low end of the Appropriate Management Level (AML) which would leave 16 horses in the herd management area. The AML range is between 16 and 27 horses. Horses selected to remain in the area would balance the sex ratio of the herd with eight studs and eight mares. Currently that ratio is seven males for every three females. Reducing the herd in size would not only ensure forage for the remaining herd, but protect the reseeding efforts in the burned area. Genetic viability of the herd would be increased in fiscal year 2007 when four mares from the Wheeler Pass Herd Management Area are added to the herd.

Other alternatives that were analyzed in the Environmental Assessment include gathering to the low point of AML, applying fertility control and adding four mares from Wheeler Pass Herd Management Area; and no action. Alternatives considered but eliminated from detailed analysis include: gathering to the high point of AML (27 horses) and applying fertility control; temporary fencing; supplemental feed; total removal of wild horses; remove burros and replace burro use with wild horse use; bait trapping; and managing wild horse and burro herd management areas in the Spring Mountains as a complex.

- The Las Vegas Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management is proposing to gather and remove19 wild horses out of 35 in an area impacted by the 2005 Goodsprings Fire. The proposal is outlined in a Draft Environmental Assessment which was released today. Public comment will be accepted through January 27, 2006.

A public meeting will be held on Thursday, January 12 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the BLM’s office at 4701 Torrey Pines Drive to take comments on the Preliminary Environmental Assessment.

At 6 p.m., a brief presentation will be given on the Environmental Assessment, the Red Rock Herd Management Area and the area burned by the Goodsprings Fire. The presentation will be followed by a brief question and answer session. One hour of public comment will then be taken. Individuals and those representing groups will be offered the opportunity to speak and have their comments recorded. The meeting will close with a brief presentation on the next steps in BLM’s decision-making process.

Written comments will be accepted at the meeting and until January 27, 2006. Written comments may be mailed to the BLM Las Vegas Field Office, Attn: Karla Norris, 4701 N. Torrey Pines, Las Vegas, NV 89130.

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Last updated: 03-03-2007