Ford Motor Company delivered the first group of wild mustangs to the Black
Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary.
-- Ford to provide funding to preserve thousands of wild mustangs.
-- Ford has created a "Save the Mustangs" fund to enlist public support to
help ensure ongoing care for the horses in their new habitats -
-- U.S. Bureau of Land Management is resuming sales of wild horses and
HOT SPRINGS, S.D., May 19, 2005 - Ford Motor Company announced today
that it will provide aid to help save about 2,000 wild mustangs that
currently face an uncertain future. In addition, the company is offering
a means for the public to help "Save the Mustangs" - working with the
United States Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Take Pride in America
to establish a fund to serve as a means for the public to contribute
financial support to help maintain the wild horses.
"The wild mustang embodies the passion, spirit and heritage that are an
integral part of the American experience," said Ford Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer Bill Ford. "We felt compelled to do what we could to
help preserve these beautiful, legendary animals."
The unique initiative brings together the government, Ford Motor Company
and the public to help save the wild horses.
"This new partnership is an example of how the public sector and private
industry can work together to help provide for long-term care of these
animals, while sustaining the health and productivity of America's
public lands," said U.S. Interior Secretary Gale Norton.
Wild Horse and Burro Sales Resumed
The BLM is resuming its sales of wild horses and burros affected by a
new Federal law after revising its bill of sale and pre-sale negotiation
procedures to strengthen the agency's efforts in finding good homes for
the animals that must be sold, said BLM Director Kathleen Clarke. In
addition, Clarke said the Bureau is working to persuade all three U.S.
horse processing plants to refuse to buy any BLM freeze-branded horses
sold under the new law. Today's action ends the BLM's temporary
suspension of sales, which took effect April 25 in response to two
incidents involving the commercial processing of horses that had been
re-sold or traded after being bought from the BLM.
"Our agency is committed to the well-being of wild horses and burros,
both on and off the range," Clarke said. "With this support from Ford
and Take Pride in America, the BLM will be able to carry out the will
of Congress while finding good homes for wild horses and burros, which
are a treasured symbol of the Western spirit and an icon of American
Save the Mustangs Fund
To help provide a means for the public to contribute to the ongoing care
of wild mustangs in their new habitats, Ford has established the Save
the Mustangs fund. Wild horse lovers can learn more about the issue and
can help support the cause by visiting www.savethemustangs.org
Contributions to the Save the Mustangs
fund will be managed by Take Pride in America and are tax-deductible.
Preserving a Legend
After learning that thousands of wild mustangs were in jeopardy, Ford
Motor Company approached the BLM to explore potential ways to provide
support for the animal that has served as an inspiration for the company
for decades. While working with BLM on a broader plan to provide
safeguards for the wild mustangs' continued protection, Ford interceded
at the agency's urgent request on April 25 to prevent the slaughter of
dozens of wild mustangs. The horses were no longer in the control of the
BLM as they had been re-sold and sent to a processing facility for
slaughter. Ford purchased the 52 horses and donated them to the Black
Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary outside Hot Springs, S.D.
The initiatives announced today will help ensure that larger numbers of
wild mustangs are relocated to good homes, primarily at non-profit
sanctuaries and Native American reservations.
"The Humane Society of the United States applauds Ford Motor Company for
being part of the solution, working for humane and sensible treatment of
America's majestic wild horses," said Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO
of the Humane Society of the United States. "These symbols of the
American west deserve America's ingenuity and drive, and it seems in
Ford, they're getting just that. We can do better, as a country, than to
allow their destruction and demise."
An American Icon in Jeopardy
Nearly 32,000 wild horses and burros roam public lands managed by the
Bureau of Land Management in 10 Western states. These wild animals have
virtually no natural predators, and their herd sizes can double about
every five years. To maintain populations in balance with their habitat,
the BLM removes excess animals from the rangelands every year. The BLM
places thousands of wild horses and burros into private ownership
through adoption each year. Approximately 22,500 Mustangs that have been
removed from the rangelands are currently in federal holding facilities.
The BLM was directed to sell more than 8,000 wild mustangs as a result
of a bill passed by Congress in December 2004. This legislation requires
the BLM to sell gathered wild horses and burros that are more than 10
years old or have been offered unsuccessfully for adoption at least
The wild mustang, the symbol of the legendary Ford Mustang sports car,
has had a unique place in Ford Motor Company lore. Although the original
Mustang concept car was named for the American P-51 Mustang fighter
plane, the production Ford Mustang was introduced with great fanfare in
April 1964 proudly wearing the wild horse insignia.
"The Ford Mustang is America's iconic sports car and takes its
inspiration from the wild mustang, a true icon of American freedom,"
said Bill Ford.
The Save the Mustangs fund will feature a new but familiar symbol - the
Ford Mustang's wild horse insignia with a ribbon draped around its neck.
Yet another $.02 worth from a proud owner of a 1970 Mach 1 351C @