BLM temporarily closes Litchfield Corrals to public

Horses being quarantined to prevent infection spread


Bureau of Land Management

BLM Office:

Eagle Lake Field Office

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Two Horses touch noses. Photo by Jeff Fontana, BLM.

SUSANVILLE, Calif.  – The Bureau of Land Management’s Litchfield Wild Horse and Burro Corrals near Susanville have been temporarily closed to the public pending lab results on an infection affecting some of the horses that were recently gathered from public rangelands. 

Though the exact type of infection has yet to be confirmed, the affected horses had abscesses consistent with pigeon fever, a highly contagious equine bacterial infection. 
“Out of an abundance of caution, we are closing the corrals until further notice,” said Emily Ryan, manager of the BLM Eagle Lake Field Office, which oversees the corrals.  “We do not want people to inadvertently spread any type of infection to their own horses or burros after visiting the corrals.”  
The affected horses are isolated in a large holding area at the corrals.  The BLM staff continues to work closely with a veterinarian to determine how long the corrals will be closed to the public.  No horses or burros will be shipped from the facility, while the quarantine is in place, and public adoptions and sales will be temporarily suspended. 
The affected horses were gathered from northwest Nevada public lands in the Surprise Complex wild horse and burro gather.  Wild horses are being removed from the range to bring populations down to the appropriate management levels confirmed in the BLM’s Resource Management Plan for the region.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.