Newsdate: Monday, May 22,, 2023 - 11:00 am
Location: SACRAMENTO, California
Ecologists and local volunteers note hat disrupted habitat, massive amounts of manure, and horse carcasses discovered in the Mono Lake Basin during snow melt indicate a growing problem as more wild horses migrate into the basin.
A revised wild horse management plan would benefit the habitat, the wild horses, and would be helpful for people since the horses have started to move onto roadways and into sensitive ecological areas.
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Located immediately east of Yosemite National Park in California, Mono is the western most basin of the Basin and Range Province, which stretches across western North America between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada Mountains. This region is well beyond the horses’ usual range which is a federally designated management area surrounding the California Nevada border.
An unusually cold winter has lead to worries related to the growth of the wild horse herd that has been moving in that direction since 2015. According to Geoff M:cQuilkin, the Mono Lake Committee’s executive director, the horses have been pushing westwards as the population has increased.
The increased size of the herd has had negative ecological impacts to sensitive hydrological resources according to Lisa Cox. spokesperson for Inyo National Forest. A 2020 census found approximately 654 horses in the Montgomery Pass herd which is three to four times the appropriate management level.
According to local officials, a revised wild horse management plan would benefit the habitat, the wild horses and be helpful for people since the horses have started to move into roadways and sensitive ecological areas.
Press release by US Department of Agriculture