Burros at Blue Wing Complex

2024 Blue Wing Complex Wild Horse and Burro Gather

The Bureau of Land Management’s Winnemucca District, Humboldt River Field Office began the wild horse and burro gather on July 8, 2024.

Purpose of Gather:

The purpose of the gather is to maintain the appropriate management level for the Blue Wing Complex HMAs, consistent with the provisions of Section 1333(b) of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Horses Act.

The BLM last conducted a gather on the Blue Wing Complex wild horse and burro gather on August 12, 2022. The staff and contractor gathered and removed 218 wild horses and 804 wild burros from public lands.

As of March 1, 2024, the population of wild horses & burros in the Blue Wing Complex was estimated at 1,912 horses and 476 burros; including the 2024 foal crop, the appropriate management level (AML) of 333-555 horses and 55-90 burros.

Details of Gather:

The BLM will conduct gather operations by the use of helicopter assist method. The BLM plans to gather 1,373 wild horses & 365 burros, remove approximately 1,729 excess wild horses & burros. Once gather operations are completed, approximately 539 wild horses & 120 burros will remain in the Complex. The gather is expected to last approximately 30 days.

Public Observation:

Visitors to the gather, including all media and members of the public, must RSVP by calling (775) 623-1567 – you must make your reservation by 5:00 p.m. the night before you intend to visit the gather activities. If you have RSVP’d, no later than 5:00 p.m. (PST) the night before, you will receive a call back on meeting time and location no later than 9 p.m. (PST) that evening.

Pending the location of the trap sites viewing opportunities are subject to change. If the traps are on privately-owned property, trap observations will be limited.  If the traps are on public lands, trap observation opportunities will be daily.

Observers will meet at specified locations that are subject to change; locations will be determined based on the location of the traps. All observers will need to sign in on the visitor’s log sheet and there will be a short briefing for the day and introductions.

The observers will be led by either an agency staff member or ranger out to the gather site of the day and all observers must stay until gather daily operations are completed. We may not know the exact location of these sites; therefore, it is extremely important that visitors be flexible.


 

Adoption Information:

For information on how to adopt or purchase a wild horse or burro, visit www.blm.gov/whb.

Background:

The Blue Wing Complex is managed within the Winnemucca District Office, by the Humboldt River Field Office. The Complex is located about 65 miles northeast of Reno in Pershing County, Nevada.

The Complex contains approximately 2,283,300 acres of unfenced public lands and consists of Blue Wing Mountains HMA, Kamma Mountains HMA, Lava Beds HMA, Seven Troughs HMA, Shawave Mountains HMA, Antelope Range HA, Euguene Mtns HA, Selenite Range HA, Trinity Range HA and the Truckee Range HA.

Horses within the HMAs are descendants of ranch horses and horses that either escaped or were released into the area. Most horses exhibit a bay, brown or sorrel color pattern. Burros within the HMAs are the descendants of pack animals used by miners and sheep ranchers. Most of the burros exhibit a gray color pattern, however pinto burros are also found in the area. It is not possible to provide any specific information on parentage of any wild horse found within the area. 

The terrain in the area consists of north-south trending mountains separated by broad valleys. Elevations within the Complex range from 4,000 feet along the valley floor to 6,592 feet on Black Mountain. Climate is characterized by warm dry days, cool nights and low yearly precipitation that ranges from 4 to 6 inches at lower elevations to approximately 8 inches at higher elevations. Vegetation varies from salt desert shrub communities at lower elevations to big sagebrush/grass communities at upper elevations. Typical species in the salt desert shrub community includes shadscale, budsage, winterfat, black greasewood, Indian rice grass, squirrel tail and desert needlegrass. Species typical of the sagebrush/grass communities include low sage, Wyoming sagebrush, desert peach, rabbit brush, needlegrass, basin wild rye, squirrel tail, Indian paintbrush and phlox.

The area is also utilized by domestic livestock and numerous wildlife species. Typical wildlife species found in the area include mule deer, pronghorn antelope, chukar partridge, coyote, and various rodents.

Daily Gather Reports

Sunday, July 14

Summary: Overcast skies with a low of 74 and high of 83, winds 8-15 mph, gusting to 20 mph

Animals Gathered: 119 (51 Stallions, 44 Mares, and 24 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 87 (36 Stallions, 25 Mares, and 26 Foals)  0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Released: 1 (1 Stallion, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 3

- Sudden / Acute: 0

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 3

5-year-old, Bay stallion humanely euthanized due to severe arthritis in front right knee.

20-year-old, Black stallion humanely euthanized due to severe arthritis in front right knee.

16-year-old, Dun mare humanely euthanized due to deformed right front leg.

 

Saturday, July 13

Summary: Sunny with a low of 74 and high of 95, winds 8-15 mph

Animals Gathered: 42 (13 Stallions, 19 Mares, and 10 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 10 (6 Stallions, 4 Mares, and 0 Foals)  50 (14 Jacks, 34 Jennies and 2 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 2

- Sudden / Acute: 1

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 1

5-year-old, Bay stallion humanely euthanized due to fractured left hind leg.

15-year-old, Sorrel stallion humanely euthanized due to severe arthritis in front left knee.

 

Friday, July 12

Summary: Sunny with a low of 79 and high of 95, winds 2-15 mph

Animals Gathered: 94 (39 Stallions, 36 Mares, and 19 Foals) 25 (10 Jacks, 13 Jennies and 2 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)  141 (61 Jacks, 60 Jennies and 20 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 2

- Sudden / Acute: 2

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 0

5-year-old, Gray jenny died due to Colic.

2-year-old, Pinto jenny found deceased on truck upon arrival at Indian Lakes Off-Range Corrals.

 

Thursday, July 11

Summary: Sunny with a low of 67 and high of 95, winds 2-10 mph

Animals Gathered: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 27 (17 Jacks, 7 Jennies and 3 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)  54 (54 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 0

- Sudden / Acute: 0

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 0

 

Wednesday, July 10

Summary: Sunny with a low of 68 and high of 93, winds 2-10 mph

Animals Gathered: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 50 (33 Jacks, 12 Jennies and 5 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)  54 (18 Jacks, 36 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 1

- Sudden / Acute: 0

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 1

20-plus-year-old, Gray jack humanely euthanized due to severe arthritis in front right knee.

 

Tuesday, July 9

Summary: Sunny with a low of 66 and high of 93, winds 2-10 mph

Animals Gathered: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 114 (60 Jacks, 50 Jennies and 4 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)  54 (36 Jacks, 18 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 5

- Sudden / Acute: 1

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 4

15-year-old, Gray jenny found deceased on trailer upon arrival at temporary holding.

2-year-old, Gray jack humanely euthanized due to fractured leg.

20-plus-year-old, Gray jack humanely euthanized due to club foot.

4-year-old, Brown jenny humanely euthanized due to deformed front legs.

18-year-old, Brown jenny humanely euthanized due to deformed front feet.

 

Monday, July 8

Summary: Sunny with a low of 66 and high of 95, winds 5-15 mph

Animals Gathered: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 144 (66 Jacks, 70 Jennies and 8 Foals)

Animals Shipped: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals)  0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Animals Released: 0 (0 Stallions, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 0 (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies and 0 Foals)

Deaths: 0

- Sudden / Acute: 0

- Pre-existing / Chronic: 0

 

Gather Status

As of July 14

Animals Gathered: 615 
255 Wild Horses (103 Stallions,99 Mares, and 53 Foals) 
360 Wild Burros (186 Jacks, 152 Jennies, and 22 Foals) 

Animals Shipped: 450
97 Wild Horses (42 Stallions, 29 Mares, and 26 Foals) 
353 Wild Burros (183 Jacks, 148 Jennies, and 22 Foals) 

Animals Released: 1
1 Wild Horses (1 Stallion, 0 Mares, and 0 Foals) 
0 Wild Burros (0 Jacks, 0 Jennies, and 0 Foals) 

Deaths: 13 
-Sudden / Acute:
-Pre-existing / Chronic:

Scroll to the bottom of this gather page for detailed “Daily Gather Reports"