Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Madeline Pickens offers to foster wild horses and burros that are too numerous for federal land

Animal lovers are celebrating an unexpected offer to save some of the 30,000 or so wild horses and burros that live on federal land from euthanasia and potential slaughter. Madeleine Pickens, wife of Texas billionaire T. Boone Pickens, made the offer at a public hearing in Reno yesterday. She is working with several private groups and intends to foster the animals.

The proposal comes just in time for the Bureau of Land Management, which "expects to spend 75 percent of its wild-horse budget this year just to feed and maintain the animals living in government holding pens and pastures. That leaves little money to oversee the estimated 30,000 that remain in the wild across the West," writes David Danelski for The Press-Enterprise in Riverside, Calif. Last year, BLM spent $21 million on care of the horses and burros. (Read more)

Despite the sigh of relief, activists warn that the fix is temporary. "I'm thrilled, obviously, that these horses are getting a reprieve. At the same time, we need to address the basic issue of how these animals got in this position in the first place," Shelley Sawhook, president of the American Horse Defense Fund, told Lyndsey Layton of The Washington Post. Horse advocates say the rising cost of hay and faulty assumptions about how many animals the land can handle are to blame. "What we seek is the management of the population," Jeff Eisenberg, director of federal lands for the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, told Layton. (Read more)

Nine states are home to wild horses and burros on federal land, primarily in Nevada, where 18,800 roam free. Based on the ability of the land to sustain them, the ideal number for the state is estimated to be 12,600. All told, about 33,000 horses and burros are free on the range that officials say can only humanely accommodate 27,000. The Government Accountability Office called the current situation a "crisis" and cited the lack of a coherent management policy as part of the problem.

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

My hat's off to Madeline. I would love to meet a person so generous to wild life. I adopted a wild mustang and would adopt more if I had the means. Romeo was a 3 year old stud when he came to me, shy but wanting freindship. He's 11now, and a sweet loving friend. Maybe the BML should consider gelding most of the stallions before turning them back out. That should help cut down on the numbers.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Madeline Pickens--you will be blessed many times over for saving all the pretty horses!!

from a horse lover
and owner...

nmbfishergirl said...

Madeline, you rock! Living a life of service to others it where true happiness comes from. I am proud of you for stepping up! God bless you.

Anonymous said...

I believe in angels again. Madeline Pickens is a true angel to the horses that she wll be saving. She also was instrumental in saving many animals after Katrina. I will probably never meet her in person but her wonderful compassion will always be appreciated.

I and the horses thank and bless you.

gail said...

Madeline should be commended! Thank you, Madeline, on behalf of the wild horses and all people who respect them.
It goes without saying that the BLM should spend less time micro-managing and more time GELDING. THAT is the answer.

pj said...

Bravo Madeline! I watched T. Boone speak out against U.S. horse slaughter at a U.S. House Committee hearing a few years ago and may I say he did a fabulous job! Now I see you're speaking out and doing something awesome for our wild horses as well. Thank you for your wonderful hearts in helping God's creatures. So much appreciated!

Barbara said...

Gelding of stallions must not be done because so many wild horses have been rounded up that most herds are no longer genetcally viable. Mares are being given a contraceptive. Less than 16,000 wild horses are now free in all the West. The rescued ones will not be able to breed. The BLM is "managing for extinction". Roundups are still going on. Visit www.wildhorsepreservation.org and http://www.americanherds.blogspot.com/ for more facts.

Anonymous said...

God Bless You Madeline.

Cynthia said...

you are amazing... that's all I can say. PLEASE add dogs, sheep, pigs, cows, calves and sheep if you can eventually. You are incredible.

ellen douglas said...

Thank you Madeline ! If there were more people like you, the world would be a much better place. I too feel that it is our duty to protect our animals. I commend you and only wish that I could be there to see these wild horses kick up their hooves and run free across the territory - cannot think of anything more beautiful !

smartone said...

I am an animal lover and a vet tech and Madeline I just want to thank you for caring so much about the animals especially the horses in this case. If only more people like you cared and had your compassion. If I had any money I would surely help you but my hands are tied being low income.
Best of luck with the horses.
Donna ACS

Anonymous said...

Bless you Madeline for taking a stand and being able to help the beautiful wild horses. It's always the cattle industry/people who don't want anything else on the lands, no buffalo, no wolves, no wild horses; just the cattle and the almighty dollar.

Anonymous said...

Wow Miss Madeline! Your generous act to the horses is just so much more than amazing. I hope when I grow up I become even just half as good of a person as you are

Karen said...

Madeline - God has truly blessed you with the financial resources to support your proposal to save the wild mustangs and burros that roam the West. He has also given you a compassionate, caring heart for animals in general. Many blessings to you for your efforts!

Anonymous said...

I am amazingly touched by this~ I remember seeing the wild mustangs running when I was younger and traveling cross country. I do think contraception of some kind is needed. Is there a place we can donate to help this process? Madeline, I hope you appreciate how blessed and lucky you are that you have this option to do this. God bless you.
mikki

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU, MADELINE! I live for the day when I can adopt one of these special animals! Bless you for your tremendous generosity. Because of your efforts, someday my grandchildren will be able to see these beautiful animals on their own terrain, safe and sound! God bless you and yours. B

Anonymous said...

Madeline,

Tears roll down my cheek at the thought of your generous gift to the horses and the future generations. What a beautiful gift you have given to all of us. God bless you!

Catherine said...

I applaud Madeline for her concern for the wild horses. I would like to have my name put on a list of people willing to help Madeline in her quest for a ranch specifically for the wild horse. I am an RVer and would love to visit her ranch.
Bob Shawley - theshawleys@gmail.com

Kathy Putney said...

The world definitely needs more like you Madeline...Our federal government needs to find their hearts instead of always thinking about their wallets.
God bless you Madeline. Please contact me if you need help with your foster home for horses. I am available to relocate and would love to work with you and these magnificent animals. Peace and Love, Kathy Putney
lovingnanny13@yahoo.com

bbennett3 said...

Madeleine--Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your actions to save our wild horses. Bill B.

Anonymous said...

I'm so pleased that a person with means has stepped up to save an American Heritage. it was America that gave her the means and she is returning the favor.....in addition, I'd like to see some of her "means" go towards removing the government laws that allow public grazing on government lands. Owners of cattle need to supply their own grazing rather than tax payer dollars going towards their private use. Perhaps that removal of privatly owned livestock would allow for the horses to flurish.

In addition a program to geld all captured stallions may prove beneficial?

Wild, Wild West...America's Heritage.

Anonymous said...

Madeline,
You are so right, when you said -Animals do not have a voice and we must be their stewards in our changng world. Tears ran down my face when I read what you've done for these horses. In a sea of bad news, you and your actions of compassion are a shining bright spot of hope for our world.
THANK YOU Madeline from us humans and those beautiful horses...you go girl !!!!!!!!!

mark said...

Thank you so much! I am a horse owner and always wanted to adopt a mustang. I currently work for the Corps of Engineers and have been and will be going back to Afghanistan to help in the rebuilding of that country and building life support facilities for our troups. Upon my return I would love to see your place and I will have the time it takes to properly care for a mustang. See you then !

holly said...

Bless you madeline, many times over.

Arie said...

Thank you Madeline for what you are doing for the horses and burros. The cattleman need to understand that they don't have exclusive rights to the land.
If the BLM is concerned about the population then they should geld some of the yearling studs. Not all otherwise you risk the chance of inbreeding to closely.

Anonymous said...

Madeline, you are an inspiration, thank you so much for your generosity.

Anonymous said...

How wonderful it was to read this information about how Madeline is going to save so many beautiful horses. These animals will now be saved from such a cruel lifestyle and death. It is due to her selfless actions and understanding that these horses, like all other animals used for consumption or gratification of the senses, really do have the right to survive and enjoy life as any living thing. I thank her for stepping up and doing this service. I now hope that others who have the means financially, as well as the deep understanding that all animals, not only our animal of choice or personal pet, have the right to live and should also be assisted. Animals eat, sleep, release urine and stool, defend, mate and raise families. They also communicate with each other. Animals deserve life without the torturous actions of the meat industry, just as human beings. If we only just take one minute to picture the reality of the "Thanksgiving turkey", for example, that suffers simply for our consumption, being beaten and killed as it struggles for life. (this example comes since the holiday season is upon us)
It isn't any fault of our own that we partake in this cruel industry because many of us were taught as babies and children that we have to eat and use animals for survival.We see though, that in actuality, health suffers in so many elders due to the colon holding so much flesh that it cannot break down, which often leads to cancers and other intestinal ailments. But once we are capable to see the truth, I hope for the animals sake, that we all make the right choices for the lives of these precious animals....horses and all! God Bless.......and he created us all.

Elaine said...

Dear Madeleine & T Boone Pickens,
You are fulfilling my dream by saving these magnificent wild mustangs horses. I am such an animal lover, and have had one kind or another of an animal since I can remember. We lost our precious dog Matti one year ago. My dream would be to have a beautiful facility for the elderly which would be connected to a beautiful facility for unwanted and sick animals so that the two could always reach out and love one another. I truly believe that animals are a medicine especially for the elderly. Thank-you again Madeleine for all that you have and that you are doing for our 4 legged friends.

Arabella Devon said...

It's great to say "Way to go Madeline" but what happens when she tires of this project? Horses are a long-term commitment. Can we please get a foundation or committee phone number or email so that we can support her efforts with visiting her planned retreat and thereby giving a great idea a viable source of income and support?

allyson said...

Madeleine, I think your endeavor to save these wonderful creatures is absolutely phenomenal!...I wish you could get up to NYC and help get the poor hansom cab horses (horse drawn carriages) off the streets. These horses live a life of torture on a daily basis, and could use an advocate like you as no one, including PETA has had any success in putting an end to this antiquated, barbaric industry

Anonymous said...

MIRACLES DO HAPPEN!!!

Old Cowgirl in Arkansas said...

THANK YOU Madeline!! God himself appointed people to take care of the animals and the earth!! Horses have a soul, intelligence and emotions, and a HUGE capacity for LOVE! The wild mustangs are a NATIONAL TREASURE and American ICON!! I wish "those in power" could really treat them as such!! LONG LIVE THE WILD MUSTANGS!!

Lady Donna B.P. Cathcart said...

Dearest Madeline, I cryed when I heard that you are saving the wild horses. You will go down in history as a Great Conservationist. God Bless you! Sincerely, Lady Donna B.P. Cathcart

chesbaygal said...

Dear Madeleine: I was so very excited when I saw the World News piece on your endeavors to save our mustangs. I knew that I had to contact you.

First, and most importantly, I want to thank you for your efforts and compassion. I have often wished that I had the means to do what you are doing. God bless you for using your resources to aid and protect these wonderful and noble creatures. I love all animals but horses are my soul mates. My happiest moments are those I have spent with my equine friends. They are very intelligent and have a great capacity for love and devotion. They have taught me more than I could ever express.

Second, I would desperately like to find a way to help you. Unfortunately, I am not in a position to offer financial support but, if there is anything that I can do to assist with this project, I would definitely be interested. I would even be willing to relocate if I possess any skills that may benefit your program. I would love to discuss this with you in further detail if you are interested.

Again, thank you so much for your generosity, your love for God's creatures, and your understanding that is our responsibility to be the caretakers of all He has given us. I wish you much success with this project. My heart and hopes are with you and all involved.

Juli said...

Madeline,

Thank you so much for your kindness to these animals. I am afraid all animals will suffer more because of our state of economy. I hope more people will still find a way to give to the many organizations trying to help them.

Anonymous said...

GOD BLESS MADELINE!

Ive been waiting for sooo long to have the pefect role model...but not anymore!!!!

Thanks a Million for what you've done,
Reaghan

Anonymous said...

I am so thankful for Madeleine Pickens. I am horse crazy and I am saving my money up to adopt a mustang!! I hope I can do it soon and start adopting lots so I can help. I have been trying to find a role model and now I have found her!!!

Annie said...

God bless you Madeline Pickens,
You are truly a blessing to America's wild horses!!! Your kindness and generousity is amazing, You are one of a kind!!! God bless you and all of God's precious creatures!!!

sydney said...

your blessed .thanks so much for saving r wildlife .i am a horse owner .i have a 12 year old mare named tee.my daddy got her for me.

Nevada Barbre said...

Madeline Pickens---you are the NEW Wild Horse Annie. Wild Horse Madeline! Thanks. I grew up in Nevada and had many wonderful encounters with wild horses. I had the good fortune of meeting Wild Horse Annie when I was a youngster and again years later when she came to Washington, D.C. My family moved because my dad worked for Senator Cannon. My heart is still in Nevada, I visit when I can..and besides the stars and the mountains..I miss the wild horses the most. A sanctuary sounds like a marvelous idea. I will never understand how the modern cattleman using public grazing lands doesn't honor the history of the horse and isn't grateful for the world horses helped build for them. I want to return Home to Nevada and the wild horses...so.. Madeline...tell me when to submit my retirement papers here and my job application papers with you.
Nevada Barbre

Anonymous said...

Thank you Madeline Pickens for helping our national heritage--the horses!