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The Sanpete Messenger

433 more wild horses sent to Axtell ranch

Hundreds of wild horses were gathered and removed from a BLM herd management area and brought to the BLM's contracted off-range corrals in Axtell.
Hundreds of wild horses were gathered and removed from a BLM herd management area and brought to the BLM’s contracted off-range corrals in Axtell.
433 more wild horses sent to Axtell ranch

 

Robert Stevens

Managing editor

2-16-2017

 

     

AXTELL—The BLM-contracted Axtell wild horse and burro off-range corrals ran by Despain Livestock received 433 more wild horses after the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) conducted a large wild horse herd gather and removal in late January.

The Sulphur Wild Horse Herd Management Area (HMA) in western Utah contained a large amount of excess wild horses, says Lisa Reid, BLM public affairs specialist. To prevent the HMA from becoming unmanageably over-populated, the BLM conducted a mass gather and removal, along with administration of a fertility control drug.

The 265,675-acre Sulphur HMA is located in western Iron, Beaver, and Millard counties.

Due to the high number of horses that were concentrated along Utah State Route 21 and the safety concern of wild horse vehicle collisions, the first 200 horses captured near the highway were removed first.

The BLM selectively chose a total of 192 horses to return to the HMA to ensure the historic colonial Spanish type horse remains in the area. According to Reid, out of the 192 horses selected to remain in the Sulphur HMA, 80 mares were treated with a fertility control vaccine.

Reid says the 433 animals removed from the range were shipped to the Despain Livestock off-range corrals contracted to the BLM in Axtell and will be made available for adoption through the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Adoption Program.

“Due to extremely harsh winter circumstances and many horses that were captured in very thin or poor condition, the gather was concluded sooner than anticipated,” Reid said. “Deep snows were encountered that hampered the gather crew’s ability to access much of the southern reaches of the HMA.”

For more information, contact Lisa Reid, public affairs specialist, at (435)743-3128 or lreid@blm.gov.