2016 Sand Wash Basin Wild Horse Gather

In Progress: Nov. 3-present.

The Little Snake Field Office is currently gathering  up to 50 excess wild horses from the Sand Wash Basin Herd Management Area using bait trapping. Mares captured but not removed from the range will be given fertility treatment before they are released back into the range.

Two partner groups, the Sand Wash Action Team and Great Escape Mustang Sanctuary, will help the BLM select and treat wild horses. The young wild horses gathered will go into the GEMS adoption program.

Our partnership with SWAT and GEMS are key to the success of this gather as well as the long-term management of wild horses in the Sand Wash Basin. These groups help us with on-range activities like assisting with gathers and administration of fertility treatment; maintaining fences, trails and springs; signing roads and trails; and reseeding; as well as off-range activities like adoptions and promotional events.

Gather Reports

Reports for Sand Wash Basin gather in BLM Colorado Northwest District/Little Snake Field Office. Contractor Cattor Livestock using bait/water trapping, planning to gather 200 wild horses, treat 75 with birth control and remove 50.

Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016

Summary: The BLM received permission from Moffat County to limit access to a county road where trapping was taking place. We communicated with locals to explain the operation and advised them to avoid the area if possible. Weather was warm. 

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 2
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016

Summary: The BLM trapped 12 horses today, took seven adults and two foals to corrals and left two mares and one foal in the trap overnight.

Animals Gathered Today: 12
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 2
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016

Summary: The mares and foal and one additional mare caught today were transported to the holding corrals without incident. Four additional horses (three studs and one mare) were caught and transported from a different trap today. No foals were orphaned, no horses were injured, and no hotshots were used during loading or unloading.

Animals Gathered Today: 5
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016

Summary: The mares and foal and one additional mare caught today were transported to the holding corrals without incident. Four additional horses (three studs and one mare) were caught and transported from a different trap today. No foals were orphaned, no horses were injured, and no hotshots were used during loading or unloading. An injured foal was also located today. The contractor captured it and, due to the injuries it had, it was determined it needed vet care. SWAT arranged for a volunteer to pick up the horse and foster it to health or have it put down after being examined by a vet.

Animals Gathered Today: 5
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016

Summary: The injured coal from yesterday had to be euthanized. Still waiting on vet report.

Animals Gathered Today: 0
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 5
Animals Released: 8
Total Deaths Today: 1 (unrelated to the gather)
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 1

Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016

Facility Report; Horses Received

Facility Name: Canon City
Number: 10
Gender: 5 mares, 2 foals, 3 studs
Condition: good
Incidents surrounding shipment: none

Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016

Summary: The two horses that were caught were released at the trap site. Shipped five mares, three studs and two foals to Canon City.

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 2
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 1
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 9
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 1
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Monday, Nov. 28, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 1
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 1
Animals Released: 4
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 8
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 1
Animals Released: 6
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 17
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Friday, Dec. 9, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 3
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 3
Animals Released: 14
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Friday, Dec. 9, 2016

Facility Report; Horses Received

Facility Name: Canon City.
Number: 22
Gender: 11 mares, 4 foals, 7 studs.
Current condition: good.
Incidents pertaining to shipment: none.

Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 3
Animals Released: 2
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 4
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 3
Animals Released: 4
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 12
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Friday, Dec. 16, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 1
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 5
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 8
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 2
Animals Released: 4
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Monday, Dec. 19, 2016

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 0
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 15
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2016

Facility Report; Horses Received

Facility Name: Canon City.
Number: 12
Gender: 3, mares, 0 foals, 9 studs.
Current condition: good.
Incidents pertaining to shipment: none.

Friday, Jan. 20, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 14
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 1
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Sunday, Jan. 22, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 14
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Monday, Jan. 23, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 3
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 1
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Friday, Jan. 27, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Saturday, Jan. 28, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 2
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 0
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Monday, Jan. 30, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 0
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 2
Animals Released: 29
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Friday, Feb. 3, 2017

Summary: No notable events.

Animals Gathered Today: 3
Animals Treated with Fertility Control: 0
Animals Released: 3
Total Deaths Today: 0
Acute: 0
Chronic/Pre-existing: 0

Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017

Facility Report; Horses Received

Facility Name: Canon City
Number: 8
Gender: 1 mare, 7 studs
Condition: good
Incidents surrounding shipment: none

---

A death labeled as "acute" is when an animal dies or is euthanized due to acute injuries or medical conditions brought about by the gather and removal process including those that occur during capture, sorting and holding at the gather site. This term will include animals that die for known or unknown reasons thought to be related to gather activities. 

A death labeled as "chronic/pre-existing" is when an animal dies or is euthanized for reasons related to chronic or pre-existing conditions such as body condition, lameness, serious physical defects, etc. This term will include animals that are euthanized for conditions not brought about by the gather activity.

Veterinary Reports

There are no veterinary reports at this time.

Center Content: 

Bait Trapping:

In bait-trap gathers, a temporary corral is established around attractive bait to horses, such as hay pellets. At an ideal time, the corral is closed, confining the horses to the corral. Bait trapping is ideal when a small number of horses will be removed.

We anticipate about five or six traps will be needed. Horses to be removed will be transported to holding in Sand Wash. Once about 10 are in holding, they will be transported to the BLM's facility in Canon City, where they will be freeze-marked, vaccinated and tested for disease. Then they will be transported to the GEMS facility. Horses to be released will be injected with fertility treatment and then released as a group, typically within 48 hours of capture.

The horses the BLM and GEMS will select for removal will be three-years-old or younger and will come from mares with other offspring still on the range. The BLM worked with GEMS and SWAT to determine which horses should not be removed from the range for genetic reasons.

Need for the Gather:

We're committed to maintaining healthy horses on healthy public lands, and a key aspect of this commitment is ensuring wild horse populations remain in balance with what the land can sustain. Wild horses don't have any effective predators in this area, so the BLM must supplement natural means with management such as birth control and gathers to keep horses from over-populating.

The current wild horse population in the HMA is about 607 animals, and the target population for the horses is 163-362. At its current population level, the Sand Wash herd is in danger of extreme winter stress and starvation. If we don't conduct a bait gather, increasing herd populations may require us to conduct a larger helicopter gather in the future.

Right Sidebar Content: 

SAND WASH ADOPTIONS

The young wild horses gathered will go into the GEMS adoption program. The BLM plans to have a local adoption for these horses with GEMS in the spring. Some horses may be adopted from our Canon City facility or GEMS. If you are interested in adopting a wild horse from this gather or elsewhere, please call 719-269-8500.

CUMULATIVE TOTALS

Animals Gathered
167

Animals Returned to Home Range
115

Animals Treated with Birth Control
14

Animal Deaths
1

*Includes non-gather related deaths. See details in "Gather Reports"