Lion: The Stallion that Made a Difference in My Life

8 Dec

Lion: The Dun Stallion Triple B HMA roundup August 2011 ©2011 afroditi katsikis

Lion: The Dun Stallion
Triple B HMA roundup August 24, 2011 ©2011 afroditi katsikis

We named this stallion Lion. He was rounded up during the Triple B 2011 roundup. This photo was taken Aug 24, 2011 at the temp holding pens. This was the first day that I went to a roundup and the first time I was at a holding pen.

He captured my attention right away at the holding pen because of all the commotion he made in the stallion pen. I’m not sure when he was captured. This day I was an observer in Newark Valley and I reviewed all my 900 images I took that day and could not identify him in them so it’s not likely he came from Newark Valley.

While walking around the holding pens, trying to get good photos to share, there was a moment when he was staring at me. I began talking softly at him, telling him not to be angry with me and apologized to him that he was caught because I didn’t want to see him or other others captured.

As my friends joined me in the following days at the roundups in Butte Valley and we visited the holding pens, everyone remarked about him. He stood out above the other stallions as the leader of them all! He always dominated this end of the holding pen because it was the closest to his mares. In between the wet mare pen and the stallion pen was a small pen with a branded horse in it.

By the end of the round-up, my friend Maureen, decided she was going to adopt him. I was elated to say the least because I fell in love with him and I knew he would be safe at Maureen’s place and I would see him again!

BLM sent him to Gunnison. Maureen let it be known she wanted him intact – BLM acknowledged that would be fine. However, Maureen discovered they gelded him anyway but she still was going to take him.

On the day she arrived at Gunnison to pick him up, he died while they were trying to load him – he broke his neck while Maureen was in the office signing papers to take him. She was devastated! She loved him too. She called me the next day and told me what happened – I was crushed for days! – a horse I barely knew but felt an instant connection with him.

Lion and the Stallions at the Triple B HMA temp holding pens August 24, 2011 ©2011 afroditi katsikis

The Stallion Pen: Lion Controlled them all in the temp holding pen Triple B HMA August 24, 2011 ©2011 afroditi katsikis
The Stallion Pen: Lion Controlled them all in the temp holding pen
Triple B HMA August 24, 2011 ©2011 afroditi katsikis
When Lion died, I hadn’t been a horse advocate for very long – maybe 10 months. Even though I had heard about the atrocities at roundups, experiencing one was a sure eye-opener – one that I will never forget! But what happened after the roundup was just as bad – not only because Lion died but there were horses in short-term holding who also died as a result of colic. Since BLM doesn’t count the foals, there’s no telling how many of them died in holding pens!I know how all my friends feel about losing a horse they love (I have never had a horse) and I understand how one can know the magic they feel when they first see or meet a horse with an instant connection.Lion is in my heart forever and is my driving force to see the wild horses and burros back where they belong – running wild on public lands!I know experiences like this are hard to handle but it’s real important for as many people as possible to go to a roundup so you can share what happens at a BLM roundup. Be a witness before they are all gone from the wild places in which they belong.

Lion, The Dun Stallion directly staring at me. ©2011 afroditi katsikis
Lion, The Dun Stallion staring at me (there was no else there for him to stare at but me)
©2011 afroditi katsikis

©2013 afroditi katsikis


14 Responses to “Lion: The Stallion that Made a Difference in My Life”

  1. Elaine Brown December 8, 2013 at 8:07 pm #

    With tears and thanks.


    • WestDeltaGirl December 9, 2013 at 12:10 pm #

      Sorry about the tears Elaine…wild horse lovers all have them when we see what happens at roundups and how the BLM treats them.


      • cindymendoza47 October 26, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

        glad you are back your post mean alot to me since i am unable to attend the round-ups but let it be know that your every word ,let me hear the thunder and the fear they feel. makes me cry and hurt every time one is down ,and makes me hate these people dem. and rep. the same but not getting anyone to stand and speak w/these rep.’s face to face where’s willie , robert redford , ms pickins come on where is our help not even the humane society of the united states are just letting them know about the cruelty of the shade and round-ups . I have been e-mailing them about why the were not speaking out about the things going on . the obozo has been saying from the first of the year he was going to make america the richest country in the world , which he has done i heard those exact words on world new-we are the greatest nation producing oil in the world. do you know how i hate policition

        Liked by 1 person

  2. nokotahorse December 9, 2013 at 11:16 am #

    Once touched by wild horses; there is no going back. Thanks for sharing your story.

    Liked by 1 person

    • WestDeltaGirl December 9, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

      You are exactly right about that – that’s why I’ve asked people to attend a roundup – but I should also have asked that people go out and view them while they are running free.

      There were so many problems that prevented me from sharing my stories right away. When I got home. my computer crashed — took a month to get it fixed. Then after I wrote my Aug 25 post, I heard about Lion. Couldn’t bear to be reminded about the tragedy – hurt so bad I couldn’t look at my photos. But now since some time has passed, I’ve looked over my photos and just looking at them has reminded me of exactly what was happening at that time.

      In the coming weeks I’ll post about the days at Butte Valley, also part of the Triple B HMA – the blog banner photo is from Butte Valley – can’t tell you how much I wanted to scream RUN HORSE RUN when they escaped but I know the BLM would have removed me as an observer.


      • Barbara Warner December 10, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

        I read how far the horses were chased in the 3rd link. No wonder mares miscarried. Luckily Corinna wasn’t too far along and was able to carry Heidi to full term. She foaled 1 month after I adopted her here in KY after she had already been put up for adoption 2 X and hauled all over the country. She was captured 8/6/11 at Triple B(NV0417). Her tag # is 4643 and her freeze mark is 07614643..
        Your account of that roundup is very important. Are you in contact with Laura Leigh who has taken it to court?
        My Email address is if you ever want to Email me . I have been an advocate since at least 1991 and am now almost 75. Things have gotten a lot worse and some of us think there are very few, <15,000 , wild horses still free. Most all herds are now not genetically viable and sustainable either as I'm sure you know. Crig Downer has a well researched book,The Wild Horse Conspiracy, and lots more info you probably already have. I am heartbroken that these precious horses are being wiped out and even going to slaughter. I rescued my other 3 from slaughter and I guess Corinna could have been sold and gone there too. I have 2 Arabs also–one is almost 29.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Barbara Warner December 9, 2013 at 11:21 am #

    OMG ! I think Loin may have sired the BLM filly I now have . I adopted a BLM mare that was in foal and she was from that terrible Triple B roundup. Her filly looks like Lion and is now over 1 1/2 years old and taller than her dam. She is a bay but her mane has some grey in it. The BLM would have killed her since she has a slight club foot which is more of their cruelty. What a shame this fine stallion and many more have been killed. Now the gene pool is so low that extinction will be next which is what the DOI/BLM/ USFS wants. What can we do??!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Michelle Zinitz December 10, 2013 at 9:22 am #

    Lion had a rough go of it, as they all do. Gelded and wondering what the hell is next, no wonder he fatally hurt himself . So sorry for him, he almost made it. The BLM and their bloodsoaked hands………..hope he haunts them all in their dreams.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. cindymendoza47 October 26, 2014 at 3:25 pm #

    Reblogged this on cindymendoza47 and commented:
    and the coruptions continue . where is our help now people we need to get mad our points are not getting heard . do you all know i have even written and e-mailed john boehner rep. head speaker about the round-ups and the safe act and how much that would mean for the advocates and the u.s. populas that don’t want our mustangs murdered. that has to stop ,

    Liked by 1 person


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