Today, in a victory for the wild horses of the Pryor Mountain Herd in Montana, the District of Montana granted our motion for a temporary restraining order that we filed last week on behalf of The Cloud Foundation and Emmy-award winning documentarian Ginger Kathrens. Our clients challenged BLM’s decision to remove dozens of wild horses from the Pryor Mountain Herd on September 2, 2018, as the removal would have decimated the genetic viability of the herd. Ms. Kathrens submitted detailed information about the individual horses slated for removal, demonstrating that BLM’s action would result in the elimination of bloodlines and unique phenotypes from the Pryor Mountain Herd. The court found that our brief raised serious questions as to whether BLM’s action was in compliance with the Wild Horse Act and the Pryor Mountain Herd Management Area Plan. The court also found that BLM’s action would cause our clients irreparable harm, holding that BLM’s insistence that one removal action would not result in the permanent loss of genetic diversity of the Pryor Herd was “contrary to the evidence before the court” because our clients had “specifically pointed out that the BLM’s gather will result in the extinction of at least one Pryor Wild Horse bloodline, and potentially more.” The court’s order enjoins BLM from conducting the wild horse gather until it conducts a full hearing on our motion for a preliminary injunction, set for late September. A copy of the Court’s Order can be found here.
Photo courtesy of The Cloud Foundation