Estray Nevada Horses to be Sold at Auction

The Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA) will sell 175 estray horses at auction that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) removed from a public range on the Nevada-Utah border last month.

The gathered horses are not BLM mustangs. They are either domestic animals turned out onto public lands by their owners or the descendants of those horses, determined by the BLM and state brand inspectors to be estray, that is, belonging to unknown owners, said BLM spokesperson Heather Emmons.

The June 25 removal was necessary to allow the range to recover from fire damage, Emmons said.

Under a memorandum of understanding between the BLM and the NDA, the removed horses came under the department's jurisdiction. Ed Foster, spokesman for the NDA, said the department later relocated the animals to a livestock facility in Fallon.

"By statute, the BLM has the prerogative to take the horses off public land," Foster said. "We're doing our part under the memo of understanding."

Nevada law requires the department to place advertisements in local newspapers and other outlets seeking the horses' owners. Unclaimed horses will be sold during a special auction at the Fallon facility on July 10, Foster said.

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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