BLM Logo
Rawlins and Rock Springs Field Offices
Release Date: 07/19/13
Contacts: Shelley Gregory    

BLM Issues Adobe Town/Salt Wells Creek Wild Horse Gather Decision

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Rawlins and Rock Springs field offices have released the environmental assessment (EA), finding of no significant impact and decision record (DR) to remove excess wild horses to the low appropriate management level (AML) in the Adobe Town and Salt Wells Creek (ATSW) herd management areas (HMAs).

The two HMAs are managed collectively as the ATSW Complex due to unrestricted wild horse movement between the two areas. The 1,618,624 acre complex is located in the checkerboard pattern of mixed public, private and state land ownership in Sweetwater and Carbon counties, stretching from Interstate 80 south to the Wyoming/Colorado border, and includes approximately 510,308 acres which are privately controlled.

The ATSW Complex’s current wild horse population is nearly 1,447. This decision authorizes gathering approximately 85 percent, or roughly 1,229 wild horses, and removing 586, leaving 861 mustangs in the complex. Removing the mustangs would reduce the current population to the low AML of 861-1,165 wild horses. All released mares would be treated with the Porcine Zona Pellucida vaccine.

The selected alternative conforms to the Rock Springs Grazing Association Consent Decree approved by the U.S. District Court for Wyoming on April 3, 2013, to remove wild horses from private lands within the checkerboard portion of the ATSW Complex in 2013. According to the consent decree, if wild horse numbers are likely to exceed 200 within the checkerboard portion of the complex, the BLM shall prepare to remove the wild horses from the private lands. The BLM respects private land owner rights while managing wild horse populations and this gather will reduce landowner conflicts where wild horses stray onto private lands.

The ATSW Complex was last gathered in October 2010. This gather is tentatively scheduled to start in October 2013 and expected to conclude in November. The BLM offers public viewing opportunities during the gather. To participate in a viewing, please email your contact information to Serena Baker at to be added to the visitor’s log.

Initial public scoping on the proposed gather was conducted in November-December 2012 and the EA was made available for public comment in May-June 2013. All comments concerning potential impacts were addressed in the EA. The DR is subject to administrative review through the appeal process.

National Environmental Policy Act documents related to this gather can be found at

All gathered mustangs will be examined by a veterinarian, dewormed, Coggins tested and given booster shots. “Animals removed from the complex will be available for adoption through the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program,” says Dennis Carpenter, Rawlins Field Office Manager. “Those that are not adopted will be cared for in long-term pastures, where they retain their “wild” status and protection under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.”

To find out how to adopt a Living Legend, the American Wild Horse, visit:

For more information, please contact BLM Wild Horse Specialist Jay D’Ewart at 307-352-0256.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Rawlins and Rock Springs Field Offices   1300 North Third Street, Rawlins WY 82301      280 Highway 191 North, Rock Springs WY 82901  

Last updated: 07-19-2013