BLM Investigates Animal Shooting
The Bureau of Land Management, with the assistance of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, are investigating the shooting of a wild horse that was found injured in the Cedar Mountain Herd Management Area, located in Tooele County. The National Mustang Association, the BLM and the Intermountain Wild Horse and Burro Advisors Inc. have teamed up to offer an $8000 reward for information that results in an arrest and conviction of the persons responsible for the shooting.
The animal, a nine-year old black stallion, had been shot on its upper left hip, causing broken bones. The animal was unable to put any weight on its left leg and had been suffering for a lengthy amount of time. BLM officials were forced to euthanize the horse, due to the animal's obvious pain and suffering. Evidence of this criminal act was found and collected.
"It is upsetting that an individual would shoot an animal and simply leave it to suffer," said Utah BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program Lead Gus Warr. "These are wonderful animals that mean a lot to the citizens of our nation and they should not fall victim to this sort of senseless behavior."
A local citizen who frequently enjoys viewing wild horses in the area reported the injured animal to the BLM. The stallion was a part of a small band of horses that occupy the northern reaches of the Cedar Mountain herd management area.
"Viewing wild horses in their natural habitat is fast becoming a wonderful recreation opportunity for the American public," Warr said.
"BLM is inventorying and monitoring populations across the state to ensure that wild horses are safe and that no other animals are needlessly killed or injured."
BLM Utah currently manages a population of approximately 2,600 wild horses, in accordance with the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 which gives the agency a mandate to protect and manage the animals.
The Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act of 1971 makes it illegal to maliciously cause the death or harassment of a federally protected wild horse or burro.
It is also against the law to remove a wild free-roaming horse or burro from public land without authority or to convert one of the animals to private use without authority.
Persons providing information may choose to remain anonymous. Individuals with information about this incident are encouraged to contact BLM Law Enforcement at 1-800-772-3998 or (801) 550-9863. Informants may also contact USFWS at (435) 734-6446.