2021 Owyhee Complex Wild Horse Gather
Purpose of Gather:
The purpose of the gather is to prevent undue or unnecessary degradation of the public lands associated with excess wild horses, to restore a thriving natural ecological balance and multiple-use relationship on public lands, consistent with the provisions of Section 1333(b) of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.
Details of Gather:
The Bureau of Land Management’s Humboldt River and Tuscarora Offices (HRTFO) will begin a wild horse gather on or about October 11 within the Owyhee Complex located in Humboldt and Elko Counties, Nevada. The gather will be conducted using helicopter assist method. The BLM plans to gather approximately 947 wild horses, remove approximately 615 excess wild horses, and treat and release mares with fertility control.
As of May 20, 2021, the current population was 1,188 wild horses, which does include foals born this year. The most recent gather was completed in 2018.
Members of the public are welcome to view the gather operations when traps are located on public lands, provided that doing so does not jeopardize the safety of the animals, staff and observers, or disrupt gather operations. 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 5:30 p.m. the night before you intend to visit the gather activities. If you have RSVP’d, no later than 5:30 p.m. the night before, you will receive a call back on meeting time and location no later than 9 p.m. that evening.
NOTE: Public observation opportunities are subject to change due to terrain and weather conditions. The HRTFO staff will escort the public to gather observation sites located on public lands. On the Humboldt River Field Office side of the gather, when traps sites were located on private lands, public observation was limited to Tuesdays and Thursdays. Now that the gather has moved to the Tuscarora Field Office side, there is no public observation while traps are on private lands. Public observations will resume as traps are moved back to public lands.
Wild horses identified for removal will be transported to the Sutherland Off-Range Corrals near Sutherland, UT where they will be checked by a veterinarian and readied for the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program. For information on how to adopt or purchase a wild horse or burro, visit www.blm.gov/whb.
The Owyhee Complex encompasses approximately 1.055M total acres. The gather area will be in and around the Little Owyhee, Owyhee, Rock Creek and Snowstorm Mountains Herd Management Areas (HMAs).
By balancing herd size with what the land can support, the HRTFO aims to protect habitat for other wildlife species such as sage grouse, pronghorn antelope and mule deer. Removing excess animals will enable significant progress toward achieving the Standards for Rangeland Health The gather is expected to last 14-45 day.
The HRTFO is conducting the gather under Owyhee Complex Herd Management Area Gather Environmental Assessment signed in October of 2012. To view the Decision Record, go to https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/33902/510.
As of Nov 8
Animals Gathered: 934 Wild Horses (400 Stallions, 370 Mares, and 164 Foals)
Animals Shipped: 531 Wild Horses (187 Stallions, 195 Mares, and 149 Foals)
- 1 domestic mare and and 1 domestic gelding shipped to brand inspector (10/14)
- 1 domestic stud shipped to owner (11/7)
Animals Treated with Fertility Control:
- PZP: 162 Mares
Animals Released: 362 Wild Horses (195 Stallions, 162 Mares, and 5 Foals)
- Sudden / Acute: 1
- Pre-existing / Chronic: 26
Scroll to the bottom of this gather page for detailed “Daily Gather Reports”