WINNEMUCCA — Federal officials hope to catch and put up for sale or adoption about 600 wild horses roaming on about a 440-square-mile management area in north-central Nevada.
The wild-horse roundup announced by the Bureau of Land Management on Thursday is set to run for up to 15 days starting next week on the Jackson Mountains Herd Management Area about 60 miles west of Winnemucca in Humboldt County. The agency will use helicopters to help drive the animals to gathering locations.
The roundup is needed because the area can only maintain fewer than 220 horses and was estimated to hold about 848 animals before this spring's foaling season.
Federal officials said in a statement that removing the horses is critically important because water resources are extremely limited and the herd is deteriorating physically. The large number of animals is also harming the land and officials say cutting the size of the herd is important to prevent further damage.
The horses will be brought to the Palomino Valley Off-Range Wild Horse and Burro Corrals in Reno where they will be checked by a veterinarian and put up for sale or adoption.
The public will be allowed to watch the gathering operations if they don't get in the way.