The First Touch Gentling Your Mustang
Lesley works with 3 wild
horses at a BLM adoption, and very clearly explains what is
happening, what she is doing, & what she sees in each horse
as it progresses. Study this video and you can learn
"pressure and release" gentling techniques to gentle your
own new mustang!
Help for Burro adopters! Crystal Ward
All the basics of gentling,
handling, and training. A MUST for new burro adopters!
Good for domestic donkeys, too!
the specific herd management area where one's own horse or burro is from
can enrich your appreciation for your adopted animal. It is in that
spirit that these pages are offered. Do understand, however, that HMAs
(Herd Management Areas) are not breeds. A horse or burro from one HMA
has far more in common with all others from all other HMAs than it has
differences. Within any particular HMA one will find variation in size,
If you wish to know more
about your horse or burro's ancestry, please also read the HISTORY section.
Arizona has 11 Herd Management Areas. All but two are for burros only. In fact, the Arizona BLM calls Arizona "The Burro State."
There are two Arizona areas with wild horses, Cerbat and Cibola-Trigo. Cerbat is not currently an actual HMA, just an HA - apparently a Hot Topic in the Kingman area!
Note that Cerbat Mountains is incorrectly identified here as an HMA, but it is in fact just an HA. At the time of the passing of the 1971 Wild Horse & Burro Protection Act, 4 more Herd Areas were identified, but these were zeroed out between 1997 and 2002:
A popular stop on any scenic road tour of Arizona is
the old mining village of Oatman, Arizona, where not-so-wild burros
are the main attraction! These burros are managed by the BLM,
although not a true HMA.
The Cerbat range has a very special herd of very Spanish-type horses. (See Private Lands Wild Horses below for other Arizona wild horses)
The Cerbat Range HA, like the Montgomery Pass HMA on the California-Nevada border, is in balance with its environment, which includes mountain lions.
Because the population is stable, Cerbat horses are rarely gathered, except for occasional instances when a single horse or two stray outside their range and become "nuisances." Occasionally, a severe drought may also require removing horses, in order to save them.
Location: Just five miles North of Kingman, Arizona lies the Cerbat Herd Area (HA) in the northwestern portion of the state. East of U.S. Highway 93 toward Las Vegas, Nevada, the Cerbat HA runs west of Stockton Hill Road. The historic mining town of Chloride, Arizona sits at the western base of the HA.
Size: The Cerbat HA consists of 83,000 acres of Arizona interior chaparral grassland and Grand Canyon desert shrub. The most notable and definitely hard to miss feature of the region are the Cerbat Mountains, with its associated peaks, ridges and canyons. The mountains run in a general northwest to southeast direction and are flanked by Sacramento Valley to the west and Hualapai Valley to the east. At an elevation of nearly 7,000 feet, Cherum Peak is the prominent landmark within the HA and is also the heart of the wild horse use area. The climate is generally warm, dry and windy. Because the HA varies in elevation from 3,400 feet to 7,000 feet, temperatures and rainfall also vary. The thermometer can read 105 degrees in the summer and drop to a freezing zero degrees in the winter.
Population: About 90 wild horses roam the Cerbat HA today. The population is relatively stable, and as a result, recruitment is fairly low. It is believed that the high density of mountain lions roaming within the HA keeps the wild horse population stable.
Horse Size: The body size of a Cerbat horse is usually small, with an average weight ranging between 750 to 800 pounds and an average height of 14 to 16 hands.
Colors: The horses are predominately bays, with numerous red, strawberry and blue roans. Other colors include grey, black, sorrel and dun.
History: The Cerbat HA is one of only two HA’s in Arizona known as home to wild horses. There are several popular beliefs concerning the origin of this particular herd. One theory is that the Cerbats are descendants of Spanish mustangs, introduced as early as the 1500s. A second theory is that these horses escaped from early explorers in the 1700s. Yet another belief is that the horses were abandoned by livestock ranchers in the early 1800s.
Though the horses do typically show some signs of Spanish descent, their exact origin remains a matter of speculation by scientists. Regardless, this herd is protected by law.
Management: The horses are managed as living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West. To date, an Appropriate Management Level has not been determined for the Cerbat
wild horse population. With relatively stable numbers, removals by the BLM have not been necessary, and the habitation conditions remain good. At times, animals may be removed to drought conditions, or if they become a problem for private land owners. When this occurs, the horse is wormed, vaccinated against equine diseases, branded and offered to the public through the BLM’s Adopt a Wild Horse or Burros Program.