Cindy Meehl, Unbranded, and the state of mustang policy

Producer Cindy Meehl will be plenty busy this year as she works with the Unbranded team and develops the documentary film of -2the 3,000 mile adventure.

Read more.

She paused and spoke with NickerNews and BestHorsePractices to address the complexity of the mustang message:

“We’re trying to get a real holistic look at the mustang issue, from all sides, not necessarily to point any fingers, but just to explain it.





Holding pens.

The whole nine yards. It’s a misunderstood issue because you hear sound bites.
unbrandedlogoI don’t think most people know all the facts about exactly what the process is. So we’re trying to do a ton of research and make a really clear picture for the audience without taking sides.
I think if there was ever a crisis in the mustang world, it’s now. And certainly, it’s been brewing for a very long time.”

Read review of NAS study on wild mustangs and burros.

Meehl and a film crew from her Cedar Creek Productions traveled to the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board in Washington, D.C., earlier this month and interviewed attendees, adding to some 400 hours of footage.

“I don’t know that we see a great answer anywhere but I’m adamant about people not jumping to conclusions based on one news report they heard. It’s been misunderstood…I don’t want to say ‘misrepresented’ but I think it’s often not a holistic view,” said Meehl.

Posted in General.


  1. The Mustangs do need a “True Advocate” not just another program, that is “middle of the road” sitt’in on the fence view. If I hear the number 36000 Mustangs roaming in the west……I know she didn’t really do her research! We have less then 15000!

  2. 1.Wild horses and burros are no less “wild” animals than are the grizzly bears that roam our national parks and forests (Mountain States v. Hodel) neither the states of the federal government have the right to harm Our Heritage Wildlife as found by the 1995 Supreme court Ruling Babbit v.Sweet Home.

    2. The Babbit v Sweet Home case found that the term “take” means to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. 16 U.S.C. § 1532(19)

    3. By a 6-3 vote, the Court upheld the statutory authority of the Secretary of the Interior to include “habitat modification and degradation” as conduct which constitutes “harm” under the ESA.
    In addition to the statutory provisions described above,

    4. Section 5 of the ESA authorizes the Secretary to purchase the lands on which the survival of the species depends. Accordingly, Sweet Home maintained that this Section 5 authority was “the Secretary’s only means of forestalling that grave result [i.e. possible extinction)

    5. As a result, based upon “the text, structure, and legislative history of the ESA the Supreme Court concluded that “the Secretary reasonably construed the intent of Congress when he defined ‘harm’ to include ‘significant habitat modification or degradation that actually kills or injures wildlife species.

    6. Pursuant to BLM’s 2001 Special Status Species Policy requirement that “sensitive” species be afforded, at a minimum, the same protections as candidate species for listing under the ESA. It called on BLM managers to “obtain and use the best available information deemed necessary to evaluate the status of special status species in areas affected by land use plans . . . .

    7. See Policy at § 6840.22A. Under the Policy, those land use plans “shall be sufficiently detailed to identify and resolve significant land use conflicts with special status species without deferring conflict resolution to implementation-level planning.” Id. (Case 4:08-cv-00516-BLW Document 131 Filed 09/28/11 Page 8 of 37 (Sagegrouse decision)

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