Breathing Easier

I am breathing a little easier this morning, now that the removals are done.  I will miss each one of the horses.  It will be hard to go to the Dryhead and the mountain top and not see so many faces that I have gotten to know.

But I am so glad that it is over.  It has been very stressful six weeks since the first horse, Kokopelli was removed on July 11 until the last horses, Kerry and Maclean were removed on August 23.  I know I did, and I also know many of you, held your breath, wondering who would be next.  We knew it was coming, but that did not make it any easier.

I think it was especially hard for many of us these past couple weeks when they returned to the Dryhead to work on the removals.  I know I could not think of a single horse from there that I thought would be okay to remove.  Having those weeks with no removals in the Dryhead gave us all hope that maybe, just maybe they would not be able to catch anyone and it would be called off.

I know that all of the horses they did remove were on Tier One and Two, slated for removal, but it did not make it any easier.  It was especially hard to see the mares with foals go.

I do want to note that this removal went very well.  Even though we all disliked it, it did go well.  No horses were killed or injured.  All the horses have been taken very good care of at Britton Springs while they wait for the adoption to take place.

Yes, it was hard that it took so long to do, but we knew it would, because of the bait trapping.  In my opinion, this was a far better method for the Pryors to use instead of a helicopter gather.  Harder on the people involved, but easier on the horses.

I will continue to hold my breath a bit, just a little longer, until the adoption on September 8 is past.  I would like to know that all of the horses have good homes.

I am going to use a quote from my good friend Linda.  She posted it this morning in the comment section of yesterdays post:

“It can be true that storm clouds have silver linings, and I’m hoping there are as many of them as there are horses in those holding pens.”

Thank you Linda, my thoughts exactly.

Please consider adopting.  You can click on ADOPTION and it will take you to my post with photos and information on each horses that will be up for adoption.  And yes, I will be there, and yes I will be adopting.


Maia and Hera, June, 2012. They are still on the mountain.
Logo designed by Amber Bushnell

25 thoughts on “Breathing Easier

  • Good for you! I hope you get the horse you want! 😀 I sooooo wish I could be there and adopt as well; but it’s a long, long, long way to Montana. But there’s a nice little mustang mare I am hoping for here.

    Good luck Sandy!!!

  • Sandy, sincere thanks for these past weeks of reporting, photography, and dedication. This was an emotional time for you, yet you stayed the course to keep us all informed and up to date. I hope that the horse you adopt proves to be continued inspiration to you and to all of us who follow in spirit. Hugs, Diane

      • I would prefer they did, but “c’est la vie”… it would just be sad for them to announce the adoption of “Kaelia and her filly, Maybell”. Malayna is sooo much better (thanks again, Brianna 🙂 ).

      • Not only do they have some names wrong but also some ages and coloring too. For example they have both Kerry and her foal (who is apparently named Magic now?) listed as buckskins. Kalahari and Leo are both labled as red roans, Judith is listed as a two year old… it just really annoys me. And I also really like the name Malayna!

      • Thanks for pointing that out Sarah, I have not taken the time to look through it carefully. It is weird, but when I pull it up, they have no information for Kerry or Kaelia. Am I the only one that sees that?

        I am looking now and see they have Kaycees foal listed as Mariah, instead of Maria.

      • When we went to Britton Springs yesterday they gave us catalogs to look at, and to correct if we saw errors. They didn’t know that Kaelia and Kerry’s foals were already named, so they made up names for them, so when we told them they said they would fix those things.

      • Brianna, I really like the name Malayna 🙂 And I really wish her and Kaelia were staying too. I think theres still a few mares that need to foal, maybe you’ll find one and you can have another baby on the mountain 🙂

      • Thanks Sarah. It means a lot that everyone is so supportive and I’m not the only one that really wanted them to stay. I’m still trying to find people nearby that want a mare and a foal (:
        Hopefully someone close so that I can visit often!

      • Brianna, I hope you’re able to find someone close by to adopt them. They were two of the most flashy girls in the dryhead. Anyone would be lucky to have them. And I second that Joy! I’d love to see pictures of them in their new life!

    • I can still see Kerry and Kaelia with the new names… Was wondering about the Maria name, too, didn’t know if there was a typo when we got the name or if there was a typo here.

  • Love that picture of the storm moving in. Reminds me of one of my fun days on the Dryhead when I watched just such an event out on Mustang Flats.

    Thanks for posting that link from Lona Patton on FB. I may have to go to her site and add a couple of comments concerning what Lea Erwood posted on there. She claims that horses do more damage to the land than cattle, and I beg to differ with that. In the history of how the Tillets and other local supporters of the Pryor Mountain mustangs went about saving the herd from being eradicated by the BLM of that time, and then getting the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range set aside as the first public wild horse range in America to begin with—back in the early half of the 1900s before some of these internet experts were even born—it is stated that the supporters of the horses commissioned scientific studies of the range conditions which PROVED that the CATTLE, NOT THE HORSES, were responsible for most of the damage present at that time, which is still being dealt with today. This fact was even admitted by Jared Bybee in an interview in the Billings Gazette not too long ago. (Remember that link you posted to that, Joy?) Lea also erroneously states that “the horses are out there 24/7, the cattle aren’t”. I have to ask, what in the heck is she talking about??? Cattle who are on the Custer National Forest lands (or any other public lands) are NOT rounded up and brought in the barn every night like some kind of dairy operation. They are out on the range 24/7 just like the wildlife, and they are less inclined to roam very far from their water source than horses who will run a few miles just for the joy of running. Anytime I have been out there, the cattle have been very near their water source and I encounter the horses in areas that are miles from theirs. But granted, any grazing animal will graze it’s pasture to death if it is on an inadequate space with no supplemental feed. Duh. Exactly why there has to be management of herd size. And the battle rages on and the people who really know the facts keep doing their jobs while the internet is abuzz with comments and opinions from armchair quarterbacks…:)

    • Sheep are even worse than cattle, they bite the vegetation so close to the ground, it doesn’t come back for a long time — that’s why there is such a battle between sheep rancher and cattle ranchers. I often wonder if Bighorn Sheep do the same thing.

      The Jared Bybee interview was from 2009 — don’t know if the link is still viable but here it is again…

      • Thanks for that link Joy and thanks Linda for bringing it up. I remember reading it then, but it was great to read it again. I also think that there may have been domestic sheep on the mountain top, back in the 60’s. Also, those that have never visited the range, don’t know what the land is really like. It is very rocky, so recovery takes longer, if it does recover. I think it is great that they addd the guzzlers, because the horses have really started to use those areas more. The Pryor Range is not 38,000 of lush range, like I think I saw someone say on another post this past week. It is hard for those that have never been to realize that.

  • Yes, Sandy! I believe that many folks think that the range of 38,000,00 acres is a very lush field of green grasses to eat, and so true that if you have never been there, then you don’t know the reality of the land that these horses survive on. One must visit the range to understand.
    I do believe that there were domestic sheep grazing on the range at one point in time and it takes years and years to recover from sheep grazing.

    Thanks so much Joy for reminding me of that article. I am reading it again now.

    Check out our newest member of the PMWMC on our web site, news section.
    He is a beauty!!!

    Love your comment Linda! Go get em girl!!!
    The fact is that people need to know the facts, and not make judgements about things they know nothing about, much less the facts and the history of the Pryor Mountains and the Wild Horse Range.
    There will always be those who will never understand or are too ignorant to even care to learn.

    It is those of us who understand and care about the preservation of this herd who will always win. We will always make noise and be heard, for the love of these horses. They deserve to live wild, strong and free. But it is the difficult decisions that must be made in the name of management, that always make us sad. It must happen though, if we want a healthy herd, range and the preservation of this Pryor herd.

  • Thanks for being there and reporting, Sandy! Hope they all get really good new homes, wishing and dreaming and hoping we had a really big place and weren’t so far away and could adopt all of them 🙂

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