Letter to the Editor: save the mustangs

mustangsRE: White Mountain Wild Mustangs Dear Sirs: I am a local citizen and representative for the American Wild Horse Preservation. Please help save our local mustangs and let them keep their rightfully deserved homes in the White Mountains! I have driven back and forth from Las Vegas, NV, to visit my relatives, there, for years and know there is plenty of room for these horses in that mountain range and I have never seen a one!

I have seen a few cattle, but, not too many. There is definitley room for them out there. There is no room for the privately owned cattle that destroy our land, though, in my opinion. I understand that in the USFS meeting for changes agenda, coming up at the end of this month, that there is not even a mention about our White Mountain Mustangs.

These noble creatures desperately need their rightful homes re-established and increased from 75 to 150 horses, per acre. It is at least what these noble creatures deserve! Endangering any of our animals in this world is only the most obvious conclusion as to what our extinction will some day become. Please put the Wild Mustangs of the White Mountains in your meeting minutes and save them from slaughterhouses. These beautiful animals need our help, right now. Please, please be part of this urgent preservation, immediately. Your attention to this matter would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Sincerely, Debbe L’Angelle, Mammoth Lakes


29 Responses to Letter to the Editor: save the mustangs

  1. WTF January 30, 2014 at 1:54 pm #

    As a representative for the American Wild Horse Preservation you should probably make sure your facts are correct. First of all, I have seen them but not ussually from a car. They are a truly majestic animal and to many an icon of the Wild West. However 150 horses per acre is hopefully a typo and not a wish. This is not a native species and I believe they are controlled in part because they can cause a significant impact to the environment including the limited watering holes. This affects other competing species such as the antelope and bighorn. Finally, as a representative for the American Wild Horse Preservation you should become familiar with the Forest Services comment process, items do not simply get added to some agenda- you need to take time to attend the workshops and become a part of the process if you want something included on the Plan.

    • Fact checker January 30, 2014 at 5:11 pm #

      thanks for the facts lesson! But isn’t there room for all of us in the sand box?

    • Ken Warner January 30, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      WRT: invasive species — sounds like you could be talking about white men.

  2. Daris January 30, 2014 at 2:19 pm #

    Debbie I hope that the figures you give “75 to 150 horses per acre” are typos. I belive that it would only take about 2 months for the horses to starve on native grazing land without lots of supplemental feed. Who is going to pay for the supplemental feed?

  3. Fish Lake Fred January 30, 2014 at 7:21 pm #

    I see wild horses in Fish Lake Valley just about every time I drive through. They are not native to the area. Can you name any reason for them to roam federal lands besides your personal feelings that they are “noble” and “beautiful”? Public lands policy needs to be based on facts, not sentiment. This same sentimentality has led to the policies that leave thousands of mustangs imprisoned in feedlots in places like Fallon and Ridgecrest, fed hay at taxpayer expense, because it is against the law to euthanize them in a humane matter. Facts matter.

  4. MJA January 30, 2014 at 8:38 pm #

    Horse Screams

    I have made it a habit of late to once a week travel the 20 miles out to the BLM wild mustang gulag out in the Nevada desert and take these magnificent creatures some carrots for a treat. It seems the horses have been deemed in need of management by the management of our federal lands for the reason of humanness we are told. As mankind gobbles up and fences off more and more of the horses natural meadows, and drain the water, BLM captures the horses with helicopters, places them in segregated holding cells or pens, tattoos or numbers them, sells off some into servitude or for slaughter, and for the rest, to remain in captivity on the starkest of lifeless dirt, with no shade from the summer sun and no heat or barn for the winter cold. They are fed well, but with the economic trouble we are in, there are plans to exterminate them soon.

    Today I went out and as usual, bought some organic carrots with bright green tops to throw to the horses their fear of mankind is so great that only with extreme patience will they even approach. But today was different, many of the horses, perhaps a hundred or so were being held in a central pen and the others ran from me as I approached. The screams of agony from that central pen was beyond anything I had ever heard. Normally I only walk around the perimeter of the prison to avoid contact with BLM employees who had lied to me in the past. I walked around the compound and horridly threw the carrots to the horses. But I had to know why there were so many horses screaming, what was wrong. So I went into the compound and then into the main office and was told that today the mother horses were being separated from their children. I asked why, and the woman said because they had too. It was so sickening outside, the sounds of terror, horses trying to get through the metal fences that separated their families, other horses hysterically trying to control the insanity, and the young ones running around in circles crying or screaming for their mothers.

    I lost my children in much the same way some years ago, but to hear and see it being done again by people who do not feel, sense, or know was beyond my capacity. And in such great numbers, the terrible energy was beyond me. I left in such a hurry and raced my motorcycle home. I called the news companies. and humane society, but most I think were only interested in me, my name, and my address.

    I don’t drink anymore, but today I needed to get drunk. It was so wrong and so sad for me, but much much worse for those poor creatures I had brought carrots too today.
    They were screaming in pain.


    • Benett Kessler January 31, 2014 at 9:42 am #

      If you want our news agency to look into this, call our office and leave a message for me.
      Benett Kessler

  5. Clarification Please? January 30, 2014 at 11:43 pm #

    Debbe can you please explain why you feel the mustangs in the White Mountains are in danger of being slaughtered? Who is threatening to remove and slaughter them?
    Mustangs are Federally protected and managed by the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program. If there are too many horses in a particular area, the BLM gathers some of them and adopts them out. They do not send them to a slaughter house. The gathers are scheduled weeks in advance and posted on the BLM Wild Horse and Burro website, along with lots of informative information for anyone interested in mustangs.
    I also question what you mean by increasing the number of horses from 75 to 150 horses per acre. 1 acre would not grow enough feed to support 75 pygmy goats, let alone horses. For a rough visual comparison, think of the Village parking lot – now picture 150 horses crammed into that space.
    Your comments about “no room for the privately owned cattle”, yet the mustangs deserve to have their “rightful homes re-established” is baffling as well. Like the cattle, the horses came across the ocean to America on the ships of Europeans in the 1500’s, then traveled west with the ranchers…horses and cattle together.
    If you or the group you represent have information on local government action being planned against our local population of mustangs, I would like to know the details and see it reported. However, I fail to understand how the Forest Service, by not specifically mentioning the mustangs in a meeting agenda, puts the horses at risk of being sent to a slaughterhouse.

    • Pedro January 31, 2014 at 10:53 am #

      As horses as a species are believed to originate in North America and have spread around the world, “rightful homes re-established” would be appropriate if you believe they were extinct on this continent when Europeans arrived. The Lakota/Dakota people say they were here all along. Either way they belong here as much as reintroduced Bighorn Sheep and others.

      I hate to say it, but I think that a permit process for individuals to hunt or capture horses like other wildlife would be far more humane and economical way to manage and honor the herds than what we have now. It would also help eliminate idiots abandoning domestic animals that further the problems.


      • Ken Warner January 31, 2014 at 4:26 pm #


        Today, the only true wild horse is the Przewalski’s Horse, native to Mongolia. However, the horse family Equidae and the genus Equus evolved in North America and existed in prehistoric times. Studies using ancient DNA as well as DNA of recent individuals shows there once were two closely related horse species in North America, the “wild horse” (Equus ferus) and the “Stilt-legged Horse”; which is taxonomically assigned to various names.[5][6] However, the genus Equus in North America died out at the end of the last ice age around 10-12 thousand years ago, possibly due to a changing climate or the impact of newly arrived human hunters.[7] Thus at the beginning of the Columbian Exchange, there were no equids in the Americas at all. Horses first returned with the conquistadors, beginning with Columbus, who imported horses from Spain to the West Indies on his second voyage in 1493.[8] Domesticated horses came to the mainland with the arrival of Cortés in 1519.[9]

        • Pedro January 31, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

          Or they were brought by Chinese, Africans, Norse, or others that visited the Americas before Columbus.

      • Desert Tortoise January 31, 2014 at 11:23 pm #

        Camels originated in North America as well and the last North American camel disappeared about the same time horses disappeared from North America.

        • Mongo February 1, 2014 at 11:17 am #

          Hi DT,
          I have some knowledge about this…
          The camels that you are referring to that you say disappeared from North America were were brought here by the US Government . Interestingly enough, if memory serves, the last of this brigade was decommissioned at Fort Tejon.

          Camels are not native to North America. There are species that resemble camel, yet are not of the family dromedary and bactrian.
          From Wiki; “Camel” is also used more broadly to describe any of the six camel-like mammals in the family Camelidae: the two true camels: the dromedary and bactrian, and the four South American camelids: the llama and alpaca are called “New World camels”, while the guanaco and vicuña are called “South American camels”.[6][7]

  6. Smc January 31, 2014 at 1:26 pm #

    Perhaps this has something to do with her letter,


  7. PO January 31, 2014 at 3:21 pm #

    MJA what you are describing is weaning time. Domestic horses and cattle have to be weaned from their mothers as well. In the wild the juvinile males would be driven from the herd by the dominant male. So what is happening is more “natural” than you think.

    I don’t know the exact circumstances of this “weaning” but I assume it is necessary. Ya it’s pretty heartwrenching to listen to it. But they quiet down after a few days. Separating them allows the youngsters to be fed differently as they need to have a more nutritious forage for growth.

  8. Pedro January 31, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    Happy New Year! Year of the horse!

    • MJA February 1, 2014 at 8:48 am #

      The story I wrote above was at a place called Palomino Valley, it is a wild mustang concentration camp run by the BLM 20 miles north of Reno on the road to Pyramid Lake. It is a place where the once innocent wild and free mustangs that are being rounded up are brought too to be imprisoned and destroyed. It is very much the same type of place believe it or not that the Jews of Germany where taken too so many years ago. History repeats itself.

      As for what is natural and the separating of the young from their parents, there is nothing natural about it! In the wild many mustang families stay together for life. And there is nothing natural about the removal of our freedoms from the land of the free either, nor the inhumane treatment as well as their demise,

      As for why: Our government who manages our public lands, your land and my land has a policy of zeroing out the mustangs because they compete with cattle. livestock. Our government leases our land to the cattle industry. The removal and destruction of the wild mustangs, the symbol of our nations freedom is all about beef. BLM is beef.

      And as for the mustangs being non native, what is native? Isn’t it someone or something or everything that was born here and lives here. At one time there were no horses in North America as at one time there where no people here either. If the horses are non native than surely mankind is too. You know, the mankind not the mustangs that is managing to destroy it all.

      The mustangs are as natural as freedom, as America once was. And the only thing truly unnatural is our management. I hope one day we learn to manage just ourselves, or at least we should start there, don’t ya think?

      For freedom,


      • Desert Tortoise February 1, 2014 at 11:18 am #

        Domestic horses are a working animal just like a cow, pig or chicken. There are no native wild horses in the Americas, they were all brought here from Europe to work. The ones you call wild are feral, domestic horses that escaped their owners like a feral cat. Don’t over romanticize this stuff. They are another domestic animal to be managed. Horses are no more beneficial to the land than cattle. Lets not replace one problem with another. I have long been of the opinion that grazing land should be auctioned off to the highest bidder and the money used to remediate the considerable damage done by grazing. I do not want to give horses a free pass because they are every bit as destructive as cattle in the same concentrations.

        • Benett Kessler February 1, 2014 at 12:04 pm #

          Why don’t we stop the debate and say the horses are living beings and treat them accordingly. They are not statistics or labels.
          Benett Kessler

          • Desert Tortoise February 3, 2014 at 10:29 am #

            The fly I swat and kill is a “living breathing creature” too. I am not cruel to animals, and some like dogs are family to me. But a working animal is not on the same level as a human. Don’t over romanticize them. We breed these animals and raise them to do work for us or provide us with food. That places a responsibility on us to manage them effectively for our benefit without descending into needless cruelty towards them.

            I think that is what BLM is attempting to do. No one gets a kick out of hurting horses. BLM employees do not start their day pondering how they can make horses more miserable each day. But the most ardent horse enthusiasts refuse to acknowledge any competing needs for that land and appear utterly blind to the problems uncontrolled horse populations cause. They seem to be of the opinion that horses should not be regulated in any way and I take exception to that position.

  9. Bob Loblaw January 31, 2014 at 10:56 pm #

    Although its kind of a regular occurrence these days to find people spewing misinformed opinions and “facts” seemingly plucked from midair, this represents a new low. Just a few things I would point out.
    1. Although they are non indigenous Mustangs are very much a symbol of western culture, and after 4 or 5 hundred years, have earned their place in an inhospitable land.
    2. Although separating the foals from the mares seems cruel, it is a necessity.
    3. These horses are afraid of humans because they are wild animals.
    Finally, although Eastern California is home to many non-native species (Chukar spring immediately to mind) if you’re really worried about them damaging native species, you should likely deport your housecat. It is likely causing far more damage. All that said, the Mustang herds are being poorly manages evolutionary bottle necking is a far greater threat to these animals than roundups are.

    • Jack February 1, 2014 at 4:02 pm #

      Other wild animals like mule deer, elk, big horn sheep are also wild and represent the western culture. The difference is these animals have their populations managed and they are hunted. The wild horse should be hunted to maintain numbers too. Just like the wild pigs spreading across much of the country, they are non-native and should be culled. States are also in need of more money to take care of business so tags could be sold to raise revenue. Haven’t tried horse meat yet, but am certainly willing to start a new Western tradition of an annual horse roast.

  10. BobK February 1, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

    So how many of you that want to save the horses, want to eliminate the Trout because they also impact the environment. I say if you kill off the Trout to save the Frog, you also need to kill off the wild horses to save the watering holes for the Big horn Sheep.

    • Jack February 2, 2014 at 8:19 am #

      Now, now BobK, we don’t need to kill off all the wild horses, just enough to share the resources…

  11. BobK February 2, 2014 at 3:55 pm #

    But it’s ok to kill the Trout ??

    • Mongo February 3, 2014 at 10:59 am #

      We kill other humans in war.
      We kill people who have inappropriately killed.
      We kill cows, chickens and pigs for food.
      We kill the dog who has bitten someone.
      We kill ideas that threaten us.
      Yet we cling to the last thread of the American West we destroyed.
      We are a race of two faces; that of the destroyer, and that of the conservationist.
      From my selfish human perspective, the wild hose is there for my gratification.
      In times of peace it is symbolic.
      In times of travel it is my companion.
      In times of hunger and cold it is my food and blanket.
      In times of injury it gets shot.
      Yes I love it, that is not confusing, that is the better part of my instinct.
      It is my human condition that makes any scenario possible.

      This thought generated by “Big Game Sunday” and “Budweiser”.


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