Long Rescue Journey BEGINS...
In May 2000, an old friend who had been rescuing BLM
wild horses for many years
from Wyoming, Montana, Idaho & California and even from auctions called
Wild Horse Spirit asking for help. His horses were in immediate danger of
being confiscated by Montana county officials, which meant auction
& slaughter. Health, financial problems & failure
segregate stallions from mares prevented him from properly
caring for his harem that had grown to approximately 114
horses. Together with Redwings Horse Sanctuary & Colorado Wild Horse and Burros Coalition (CWHBC),
we began orchestrating a rescue.
Interim hay & veterinarian care were provided while horses
could be moved to safety. Mares & foals who were the most critical were moved first.
Between May 20th & August 25th, Betty from Wild
Horse Spirit, pulling a horse trailer, journeyed over 10,000 miles, making
over 4 different trips between Nevada to Wyoming, Colorado &
FIRST TRIP to
Montana...May 2000 (see
photos above and below)
On May 20th, Betty left Wild Horse Spirit on the first trip to
Montana, and returned (see below) on 5-27-2000 to Nevada with the
"Grey Family"...Grey, Mica, Jonni Rose, and Katy (below below).
The "Grey Family" would be the first of an eventual 114 previously
adopted wild horses rescued between May and August 2000.
(photo right) still in Montana, young
Sarah, and 5th member
of The Grey Family,
would have to wait for the 2nd trip and
with Ellie and Beauty. It was so difficult for
to leave horses behind, but the horse trailer
could only take so
many safely at a time to
make sure that mares and foals were
comfortable while traveling.
SECOND TRIP to Montana...June 2000
(see photos below)
On the 2nd
trip (see below), Betty returned to Montana for Sarah,
the 5th member of the "Grey Family", and
Ellie and her 4
week-old baby, Beauty. Unknown at this time, Sarah,
3y/o, was about one month pregnant
with Miles. On the
return trip to Nevada, Betty made an emergency vet stop in Wyoming to
examined. She was weak, malnourished, and not
doing well. Her mother, Ellie, too, who was malnourished
with no milk, never stopped eating during the entire trip.
6-6-2000 Ellie and Beauty
Beauty would not have
survived if she had remained any longer in Montana. The vet was
Beauty and Ellie. Beauty was
examined, blood work obtained, and was given initial IV's. The vet
felt her main problem was malnutrition. He also felt she would be OK
to continue her travel, but
would require subcutaneous glucose and oral
electrolytes every 4 hours on the return trip to Wild
THIRD TRIP to Montana, then to Fruita, Colorado...July 2000
(see photos below)
4th, Betty, returned to Montana and transported an extremely malnourished
bay mare (Diamond)
whose foal had died, an orphaned foal (Cheyenne,
named after her mother who had died) and a paint mare (Curly)
and her paint filly foal to Toni Moore, Colorado Wild Horse and Burro Coalition, in Fruita CO.
Earlier in June, CWHBC had also transported 4 mares, their
foals and 10 yearlings to Fruita CO for care.
Thanks to Toni and her husband, Don,
a vet who volunteered his
professional time, all horses (22) taken to Fruita CO were nursed back
to health with special assistance from Toni’s and Don’s children
who not only provided physical work but lots of TLC.
Also in June, Redwings Horse
Sanctuary had transported an additional ten yearlings and two geldings
(Coyote and Buffalo) and one stallion (Sport) from Montana to Jackson
CA for care.
FOURTH and LAST
TRIP to Montana - August 2000
(see photos below)
Late in August, Betty returned
for the 4th and last time to Montana.
On August 23rd, 24th and 25th,
the Montana Back Country Riders, Montana Large Animal Rescue and Betty
made several trips between Crooked Creek MT and Custer MT transporting
the remaining 70 wild horses safely to a large ranch in Custer MT (see
23, 2000, Wednesday -Crooked Creek Ranch to Custer
24, 2000, Thursday -Crooked Creek Ranch to Custer MT.
25, 2000, Friday - Crooked Creek Ranch to Custer MT.
transported alone, was the last horse to arrived at
Custer MT Ranch
and the last of a total of 114 Montana wild horses
Early morning of 8-25-2000 (see photos below), Betty transported the last horse, #114,
to Custer MT. The day
before, 8-24-2000, June kept kicking the other mares in the
small corral while waiting to be loaded into the trailer.
To prevent injuries to June and other mares, we removed
her from the small corral. Betty
would transport her alone the next day. Over the previous 3 days, June had witnessed all of her
friends and family members loading into trailers and leaving. She knew she was now alone.
On the evening of August 24th, after returning
from Custer MT, Betty backed the trailer up to the small chute.
June willingly and hurriedly, without any coercion,
almost trotted nonstop into the small corral, thru the chute and into the
awaiting trailer – as if she had done this a
million times before. June
was ready to make the last trip to Custer MT to join the others.
We arrived at the Custer MT ranch on morning of 8-25-2000 where
June joined the others. This
seemingly impossible rescue was accomplished because people
cared and worked together.
(Please understand that if our Montana
friend, who could no longer take care of these horses and had not
these BLM wild horses over the years, some of these beautiful
horses would never have been
and others would have surely
ended up on the dinner tables in European, Japan and Scandinavian
The Montana Rescue Journey ENDS
Once Beauty and Ellie was stable and healthy
enough for travel to California, Galen and Barbara from Redwings transported both
to Redwings Horse Sanctuary. Later
Galen, Barbara and Sport, Coyote and Buffalo
made a stopover at WHS from Montana to rest before they proceeded to
Jackson CA. The Grey
family will remain at their home at Wild Horse Spirit.
Both Jonni Rose and Katy are thriving and will
gray, like their mothers and sister, Sarah.
Both Grey and Mica have gained mucho weight with all the food
and are feeling quite at home. We
feel that Mica is not pregnant, but we are unsure about Grey at this time.
But, Sarah, a now 4y/o whose mother is Grey, is definitely
pregnant and due any day now. On 3-11-2001, Bobbi said her foal is active and kicking her mother’s
tummy. Sarah is gentle,
calm and wants to be brushed all the time. When the little-to-be foal kicks, Sarah jumps and looks around at her flank.
We understand that the little-to-be foal is "not yet ready to
walk and run at her mother side". Then
on 4-8-2001 at 10:30PM,
Sarah's foal was born. Update--Grey
and Mica were not pregnant. Katy, Jonni Rose and
Miles inherited the
dominant gray gene and are turning gray.
ON THE GREY FAMILY...PHOTOS and SARAH'S BABY
as he has grown and is now changing colors...graying-out
like his family.
- Powerful 9y/o Mica June
200 - Beautiful, 25y/o Grey
2001, Katy, now 14-months old, showing off for Alf.
(middle)...Jonni Rose posing
for the camera.
(right).....4-9-2001, Sarah, one day after Miles was born. She
is very content as Miles nurses.
(left).......July 2001, Miles and Sarah
(middle)...9-3-2001 Miles running miles and miles.
(right).....9-3-2001 Miles, now 5-months-old and color turning from
his black color at birth to gray like
his mother and
grandmother, Grey, is posing for the camera. Sarah
in the background.
Horse Spirit Ltd.
25 Lewers Creek
Carson City, NV 89704
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