07 February 2011Harsh Winter for the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range
A Message from Ginger Kathrens
Extreme cold and lots of snow are making for a challenging winter for the Pryor Wild Horses on the Wyoming Montana border. We’re concerned about Cloud and the rest of the Pryor Mountain wild horses, particularly the oldest and youngest on the mountain, some of whom may not make it until spring.
Most of you already know that natural attrition is part of nature’s plan to manage any wildlife population, including our wild horses. It’s hard to know that some horses will die, but natural selection is infinitely wiser than human manipulation.
For those who are thinking we need to step in and feed the horses, please abandon those ideas. “Helping,” in this case, would be the worst thing we could do. Animals who are lean, and even those that are not, are not equipped to deal with digesting even the best grass hay, let alone alfalfa. Feeding the Pryor mustangs is a formula for killing them.
It is also important not to stress the horses anymore than the weather already has. If you are planning to visit the range, please keep your distance (this is good advice at all times of the year!). Any disturbance would jeopardize their survival.
Having said all this, the BLM Wild Horse and Burro specialist for the herd, Jared Bybee, told me that this is not an emergency as yet. And, he assured me that pastures adjoining the range that have been closed to the horses would be opened if necessary. These are areas at the very bottom of the mountain.
We continue to monitor the situation and will keep you updated. Thanks for caring about this unique little herd, and for helping us protect all mustangs still roaming free on our public lands.
Volunteer Executive Director
The Cloud Foundation, Inc.