PRINEVILLE, Ore. - The Ochoco National Forest on Tuesday reminded drivers and other visitors traveling through the Big Summit Wild Horse Territory east of Prineville to slow down when passing groups of horses, and to give newborn foals some space as they work to stand up and assimilate to the herd.
This is the time of year when horses have moved down to lower elevations, and a majority of the mothers are giving birth to new foals from now through June, officials said.
Last week, a foal was born in a ditch along Forest Service Road 22 near Ochoco Ranger Station, about 20 miles east of Prineville. When Forest Service staff arrived to check on the situation, the foal had gotten up and moved away with its band, but the incident caught the attention of numerous visitors.
“I know it is tempting to want to intervene when you see a new baby horse, but please give it space. The best thing you can do is keep moving to your destination and contact the Ochoco National Forest if you are concerned,” said Wild Horse Program Manager Tory Kurtz.
The Forest Service has established an email account for members of the public to report sightings of wild horses within the Big Summit Territory to assist land managers with tracking and understanding herd movements. The public is encouraged to email photos and reports to email@example.com
For those interested in volunteering with the Ochoco wild horse program, there is a volunteer information day in May. Contact Stacey Cochran, Community Engagement Director with Discover Your Forest, at (541) 383-5530 for more information.
To learn more about the Big Summit Wild Horse Territory, visit this website.