Preserving Endangered Species and Revitalizing Natural Habitat | Full Episodes of  – Video

Preserving Endangered Species and Revitalizing Natural Habitat | Full Episodes of – Video

The video “Protecting animals from extinction and restoring wildlife | 60 Minutes Full Episodes” highlights the alarming crisis of mass extinction that the Earth is currently facing. With the human population growing to 8 billion and wild plants and animals losing their natural habitats, the impact on the planet’s biodiversity is significant. The vanishing wild has affected not only the ecosystems, but also the livelihoods of communities that rely on natural resources.

Biologist Paul Erick and his colleague Tony Barnoski discuss the alarming rate of extinction, which is occurring up to 100 times faster than usual. Additionally, biologist Liz Hadley emphasizes the catastrophic events caused by the loss of water and wildlife, leading to the demise of iconic state symbols and habitats.

However, there is a glimmer of hope in the form of Mexican ecologist Gerardo Ceballos, who is leading an experiment to pay family farmers to stop cutting the forest in the Kakol Biosphere Reserve near Guatemala. The experiment has had promising results, with the rebounding population of endangered species such as the Jaguar.

The video raises the question of whether these little success stories are enough to prevent mass extinction. It underscores the importance of protecting the one-third of the Earth that remains wild and the need for urgent action to restore and protect wildlife.

Watch the video by 60 Minutes

Video Transcript

In what year will the human population grow too large for the earth to sustain the answer is about 1970 according to research by the World Wildlife Fund in 1970 the planet’s 3 and A5 billion people were sustainable but on this New Year’s Day the population is 8 billion today wild plants and animals

Are running out of places to live the scientists you’re about to meet say the Earth is suffering a crisis of mass extinction on a scale unseen since the dinosaurs we’re going to show you a possible solution but first have a look at how humanity is already suffering from the vanishing Wild

In Washington state the Salish sea helped Feed the World with this weather and the way things feel once I get out here it’s time to be fishing that’s what it feels like commercial fisherman Dana Wilson supported a family on the Salish Sea’s legendary wealth of salmon he remembers

Propellers churning the water off Blaine Washington and cranes straining for the St $200 million annual catch that used to be a buying station they’re gone now they don’t buy anymore so that building over there used to buy salmon they don’t buy salmon anymore they’re it’s it just

It’s it’s just not here in 1991 one salmon species was endangered today 14 salmon populations are foundering they’ve been crowded out of rivers by habitat destruction warming and pollution Dana Wilson used to fish all summer today a conservation Authority grants rare fleeting permission to throw a net

There was a season there was a season now there’s a day there’s a day and sometimes it’s hours sometimes you might get 12 hours 16 hours that’s what we’re down to here the vanishing wild scuttled a way of life that began with native tribes a thousand years ago I don’t

Remember anybody doing anything other than salmon fishing fisherman Armando bionas is a member of the lummy tribe which calls itself people of the salmon he didn’t imagine the Rich Harvest would end with his five fishing boats all of a sudden you’re trying to figure out well

How am I going to make that paycheck for my family well for me it was like well I have a backup for a backup for a backup for a backup bonus’s backups include his new food truck switching to crab fishing and Consulting on cannabis Farms his scramble to adapt is being repeated

Around the world a World Wildlife Fund study says that in the past 50 years the abundance of global wildlife has collapsed 69% mostly for the same reason too many people too much consumption and growth Mania at the age of 90 biologist Paul Erick may have lived long enough to see

Some of his dire prophecies come true you seem to be saying that humanity is not sustainable oh humanity is not sustainable to maintain uh our lifestyle yours and mine basically for the entire planet you’d need five more Earths not clear where they’re going to come from just in terms of the resources that

Would be required resources that would be required um the systems that support our lives which of course are the biodiversity uh that we’re wiping out uh humanity is very busily sitting on a limb that we’re sawing off in 1968 erck a biology professor at Stanford became a doomsday celebrity with a bestseller

Forecasting the collapse of nature when the population bomb came out you were described as an alarmist I was alarmed I am still alarmed all of my colleagues are alarmed the alarm erck sounded in ‘ 68 warned that overpopulation would trigger widespread famine he was wrong about that the Green Revolution fed the

World but he also wrote in 68 that heat from greenhouse gases would melt polar ice and Humanity would overwhelm the wild today humans have taken over 70% of the planet’s land and 70% of the fresh water the rate of Extinction is extraordinarily high now and get getting

Higher all the time we know the rate of Extinction is extraordinarily High because of a study of the fossil record by biologist Tony barnoski erick’s Stanford colleague the data are Rock Solid I don’t think you’ll find a scientist that will say we’re not in an Extinction crisis barnowski research

Suggests today’s rate of Extinction is up to 100 times faster than is typical in the nearly 4 billion year history of life these Peaks represent the few times that life collapsed globally and the last was the dinosaurs 66 million years ago there are five times in Earth’s history where we had mass extinctions

And by mass extinctions I mean uh at least 75% 3/4 of the known species disappearing from the face of the earth now we’re witnessing what a lot of people are calling the sixth mass extinction where the same thing could happen on our watch it’s a horrific state of the planet when common species

The ubiquitous species that we’re familiar with are declining Tony barnowski colleague in the study of Extinction is his wife biologist Liz Hadley faculty director at Stanford’s Jasper Ridge research Preserve in California you know I see it in my mind and it’s a really sad state if you spend

Any time time in California you know the loss of water the loss of water means that there are dead salmon you see in the river right before your eyes but it also means the demise of those birds that rely on the salmon fishery Eagles um it means you know things like minks

And Otter that rely on fish it means that our habitats that we’re used to the forests that you know 3,000 year old forests are going to be gone so it means silence and it means some very catastrophic events because it’s happening so quickly means you look out

Your window and 34s of what you think ought to be there is no longer there that’s what mass extinction looks like what we see just in California is you know the loss of our iconic state symbols we have no more grizzly bears in California the only grizzly bears in

California are on the state flag that’s our state mammal and and they’re not here anymore is it too much to say that we’re killing the planet no I I would say it’s too much to say that we’re killing the planet because the planet’s going to be fine what we’re doing is

We’re killing our way of life the worst of the killing is in Latin America where the World Wildlife Fund study says the abundance of wildlife has fallen 94% since 1970 but it was also in Latin America that we found the possibility of Hope Mexican ecologist herard calios is

One of the world’s leading scientists on extinction he told us the only solution is to save the onethird of the earth that remains wild to prove it he’s running a 3,000 square m experiment in the kakol biosphere Reserve near Guatemala he is paying family farmers to stop cutting the forest we’re going

To pay each family certain amount of money that is more than you will get cutting down the forest if you protect it and how much are you paying out every year ah for instance each family here will get around $1,000 more than enough here to make up

For lost Farmland in total the payouts come to $1.5 million a year or about 2,000 ,000 per square mile the tab is paid through the charity of wealthy donors the investment to protect what is left is I mean really small the payoff on that investment is being collected on

Cavalo’s Jungle cameras 30 years ago the Jaguar was very nearly extinct in Mexico now salio says they’ve rebounded to about 600 in the reserve there are other places where there are reserves around the world where they’ve been able to increase the populations of certain species but I wonder are all these

Little success stories enough to prevent mass extinction all the big success that we have in protecting forest and recovering animals like tigers in India jagar in Mexico elephants in Botswana and so on are incredible amazing successes but there are like grains of sand in a beach and to really make a big

Impact we need to scale up this 10,000 times so they are important because they give us hope but they are completely in sufficient to cope with climate change so what would the world have to do what we will have to do is to really understand that the climate change and

Species Extinction is a threat to humanity and then put all the Machinery of society political economic and social to Wars finding solutions to the problems finding solutions to the problems was the goal two weeks ago at the UN biodiversity conference where Nations agreed to conservation targets

But at the same meeting in 2010 those Nations agreed to limit the destruction of the Earth by 2020 and not one of those goals was met this despite thousands of studies including the continuing research of Stanford biologist Paul Erick you know that there is no political will to do any of the

Things that you’re recommending I know there’s no political will to do any of the things that I’m concerned with which is exactly why I and the vast majority of my colleagues think we’re we’ve had it that the next few decades will be the end of the kind

Of civilization we’re used to in the 50 years since erick’s population bomb Humanity’s feasting on resources has tripled we’re already consuming 175% of what the Earth can regenerate and consider half of humanity about 4 billion live on less than $10 a day they aspire to cars air conditioning and a

Rich diet but they won’t be fed by the fishermen of Washington’s Salish sea including Armando bionis the tribe has been fishing salmon here for hundreds of years yeah and your generation is seeing the end of that it’s getting harder and harder um I hate to say I don’t want to

Say it’s the end of it why do you feel so emotionally attached to this it’s everything we know I’m fortunate enough to know where I know a lot of different things I’ve done a lot of different things in my life um I’ve Gotten Good at uh evolving and

Changing um but not everybody here is built like that and to some of us this is what they know this all they know the fun five mass extinctions of the ancient past were caused by natural calamities volcanoes and an asteroid today if the science is right Humanity

May have to survive a sixth mass extinction in a world of its own making the United States has national parks devoted to canyons and deserts glaciers and geysers even underwater coral reefs 63 national parks in all but somehow we skipped the American Prairie the grasslands that once stretched from the

Mississippi River to the Rockies played a vital role in the lives of Native Americans white settlers and an endless variety of wildlife they inspired ired explorers and artists but apparently not Park planners nearly 20 years ago a nonprofit organization began trying to fix that not with a new National Park

But rather a huge privately operated nature reserve on the great Plaines one that would be open to the public but also a place where Buffalo can roam once again through a vast stretch of open and for the moment empty grassland Allison Fox is taking us up a muddy two track

Path in search of Buffalo this road is incredible Fox is the CEO of American Prairie which has as just one of many audacious goals the restoration of Bison to a landscape they once ruled oh there there oh there they are there look at them wow there they are look at the

Babies look at that we found part of what American Prairie calls its conservation herd of about 800 Buffalo this group is mainly mothers with new calves which are a distinctive shade of red trying to to account of the babies but now they’ve kind of moved the babies into the middle of the

Group this land is like this as far as the eye can see as far as the I can see that’s not a bad description of the scale of American Prairie’s ambition to create the largest Nature Reserve in the contiguous United States the nonprofit has more than 50 employees from

Fundraisers to Buffalo rankers Allison fox has worked there for 15 years and has been in charge for the last four overall the goal is to have how many acres in this Reserve yeah the the overall goal is about 5,000 square miles 3.2 million Acres of intact grasslands

Comparable to the size of the state of Connecticut and also comparable to Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks combined that’s big it is big the big chunk of land is mostly north of the Missouri river in North Central Montana one of the most remote parts of the country it’s a patchwork of privately

Owned cattle ranches and land owned by the government including a huge existing National Wildlife Refuge named after the famous Cowboy painter Charles M Russell and that 1.1 million acre serves as the um anchor of American Prairie’s 3.2 million acre vision and so you’ve got these big chunks of federal land and

Your buying land in between to try to piece it all together exactly so just about every time a private Ranch comes up for sale inside its desired footprint American Prairie tries to buy it to add another piece to its puzzle and preserve more grassland how many ranches have you purchased we

Have purchased 34 ranches to buy all those ranches American Prairie has raised nearly $200 million for more than 4,000 donors including Wall Street financiers and Technology Moguls it says it will take hundreds of millions more and decades more to complete the patchwork so this

Is a long game this is a long game and it’s a long game for land acquisition it’s a probably even longer game for the restoration of habitats and species this area was America serengetti truly America serengetti with tens of thousands of Bison Pronghorn elk deer grizzly bears wolves

Is that the goal or is that a goal to restore that yes to have the the the ecosystem function um fully as it once did Charles Russell’s paintings portray a romanticized version of what the prairie ecosystem used to look like teeming herds of Buffalo Native Americans hunting and living alongside

The Buffalo at least until they both were displaced by white settlers and hundreds of thousands of cattle it’s amazing to think of the people that lived here before us people and other things so over this direction there’s quite a cluster of tep rings so the Native American could you still use this

Come on Ros Connie French operates this cattle ranch with her husband Craig and they are proud of their collaboration with conservation groups in fact they graze some of their cattle on a ranch that’s been owned by The Nature Conservancy for more than 20 years okay girl but when American prairies early

Leaders came in talking about saving the land it really rubbed her wrong so save it yes but not just tromping over people is that what it feels like it does feel like that sometimes yes so um They Came in Like We Know Better MH MH you have

Said that for their Vision to become a reality MH you and what you do M that you’re gone I guess I can say yes that’s how it feels to us to me along the few roads slicing through the grasslands here the signs are everywhere save the cowboy stop American

Prairie Reserve they make it clear that a lot of Connie French’s ranching neighbors share her concern what some Ranchers have told us is that when you say you want to save the land what they hear is that you want to save the land from them yeah no we

Are um well aware that that word save hit a nerve and that was not at all Our intention many of our ranching neighbors are committed to conservation so if I could pull back that word save I absolutely would American Prairie is now working hard to mend fences with

Skeptical neighbors it has a program called wild Sky Run by a wild life biologist on its staff Daniel Kinka wild Sky ranchers are the best at what they do in terms of sustainable ranching wild Sky will pay a Rancher up to $155,000 a year for things like modifying fences to

Make them easier for wildlife to get over or through while still keeping cattle contained it also pays ranchers to install cameras on their property the Rancher gets paid for every animal that crosses the path of this camera that’s correct you get a coyote that’s 25 bucks

A black bear comes behind it that’s 300 bucks four or five elk come behind it that’s 50 bucks the biggest payouts are for wolves and grizzly bears $500 per picture per camera per day wolves and grizzly bears aren’t on this part of the Prairie at the moment the

Idea of wild sky is that as they and other Wildlife do return payments will help cattle ranchers tolerate them make sure you follow up the Cavs Lance Johnson a fourth generation montanan who runs a cattle ranch with his wife and two daughters is one of 15 wild Sky

Ranchers the cameras on his property have captured enough pictures this year year to earn him $6,000 the annual maximum American Prairie will pay for photos of wildlife these ranches are so hard to make profitable that if you can figure out any way to supplement your income then that’s probably necessary right now

Johnson also leases grass and grazes cattle on a ranch owned by American Prairie so while some of his neighbors see it as a threat he says that working with it helps ensure his family ‘s future you see a place for you and your daughters and your cattle on this land

For the foreseeable future we hope so we hope for the rest of our lives that we’re there I want to do everything I can to give our girls that opportunity to have ranching in the future American Prairie says it intends to work alongside cattle ranchers for decades to

Come and it does have some natural allies in the neighborhood the Rancher and the wild space can those two coexist yeah they can and they are happening right now Mark Azure was born and raised on the fort belnap reservation which is adjacent to where American Prairie is assembling its

Reserve he’s a former president of the reservations Tribal Council made up of members of two tribes the nakota and the Ani is there any recollection of what this land was like before the white settlers came like the wildlife yes uh it was plentiful millions and millions of

Buffalo and and analou and deer and Perry dogs black footed ferrets elk the tribes at Fort belnap began building their bison herd nearly a half century ago and it’s now more than a thousand animals Mark azer took us out to see part of the herd which roams

Across a huge pasture on the reservation so they’re just scattered out doing what Buffalo do and that’s eat the grass and right now enjoy the weather it’s not the tribes benefit economically from selling some buffalo meat but you can see in the symbols used during native ceremonies that their

Value is much greater than money we know the history of the tribes and the Buffalo and they were one in the same to come out here and get on the Prairie and see a herd of buffalo you can kind of leave that world for a little bit and reconnect with that

Lifestyle that my ancestors lived years ago might be just a little bit but it’s there some ranchers fear that the tribes and American Prairie will let their buffalo Rome Free as they once did you use the term free and I always argued that point because there’s a fence

Somewhere there has to be a fence somewhere but as much room as we can give them to Rome then within that context they’ll be free yeah but not like it was 200 years ago and we understand that still be a place where you can come and see the Buffalo Rome

Absolutely American Prairie encourages people to visit the land it owns it operates campgrounds and has has built huts and Yurts that anyone can reserve it allows hunting on many properties which helps to build support among montanans across the West you see more and more not no trespassing signs we’ve

Talked a lot about U wildlife and wildlife habitat but certainly providing access for people to um appreciate learn from recreate on this land is a really important part of what we’re doing as well the debate over American Prairie is often framed as an either or either there are cattle or Buffalo if

Preservationists win ranchers lose what we found across these wide expanses of grass were much more subtle shades of green you know when a new group comes in new folks new neighbors it takes some time to learn if it’s legit what I think I hear you saying is they have to earn

Your trust and so far they have not no that trust isn’t given lightly with the size of the state of Montana and the the herds of cattle hundreds of thousands of animals in this state um I don’t think Buffalo will ever compete and that’s not what we’re trying

To do we’re trying with American Prairie take a section of land in the state and uh return it back as best we can to what it was 200 years ago it’s a huge section of land still not bigger than Montana I think there’s room here for both mosm Beek’s goren Goa National Park

Was the Envy of Africa Wildlife Drew tourists from around the world but beginning in the 1960s a man-made catastrophe slaughtered the animals until it was said there was nothing left but mosquitoes and landmines in 2008 we followed an American entrepreneur who dreamed of returning a wasteland to Greatness now

14 years later Greg Carr has something to show the world and we couldn’t resist a return to gorang Goa when Carr sends invitations like this just come and sit at a sunset by the lake in the center of this National Park I mean time stops and you get 100 colors of yellow

And 100 colors of orange and then the desk sets in and then a flock of birds go over the water and there’s a hip over there making a noise and there’s an impel over there there and you know it’s like well I could have been here 100,000 years ago

And it might have been the same Greg Carr’s wonder is almost like disbelief a million Acres of Africa reborn when I first came here in 2004 I could drive around with my mosm bean friends all day long and if we were lucky maybe we’d see one bat Boon or one warthog or

Something now we drive around and it’s an ocean of wildlife you come around the corner there’s a herd of elephants you know go the other direction there’s there’s some lion cubs 10,000 water buck and I say to myself you know what nature can rebound the rebound is in southeast

Africa near the center of mosm Beek here 28 years of war from the 60s to the ’90s killed an estimated 1 million people and white wiped out 95% of the wildlife in gorang Goa for food and profit as the war raged in the 1980s Greg Carr was a

Tech entrepreneur who’d made a fortune perfecting voicemail he quit business to devote himself to Human Rights and in 2004 he met mosm Beek’s president hakeim chano who made a wild pitch and he said look please come to mosm Beek and help us and we want to restore our naal

Park when we flew over this I said this is it when we met Carr in 2008 his nonprofit Foundation had signed a 20-year contract with mosambique his plan was to import animals from all over Africa well step one we had to remove 20,000 traps and wire snares that were

Left in this park left over from the war get rid of all those because when I first came here I mean we think we had five or six Lions maybe in a million acres in a million acres and the lions that we did have most of them had three

Legs cuz they had stepped in a trap or something and then second some of the species were just gone completely so we went on a process first bring in the herbivores so we bring in 200 Buffalo we bring in 200 wab Beast we bring in some zebra and then when you got enough

Herbivores then you’re going to want the carnivores back so we reintroduced leopards we reintroduced hyenas the Lions all by themselves their numbers just took off so from five or six Lions when we started we now have probably 200 Goran Go’s lion conservation is urgent because since 1950 Africa’s lion

Population has fallen from half a million to 20,000 due to habitat loss and hunting we saw how gorang Goa is protecting its Lions on a mission with Park veterinarian Antonio Pao okay I’ll will shoot now Pao fired a tranquilizer dart Right On Target and a 300 lb

Lioness led us on a chase give me space turn on turn she left us behind but she couldn’t outrun the sedative there she is yeah she’s there she’s sleeping she’d be out about an hour as Dr Paulo changed her failing GPS collar the signal goes to headquarters where they track the Prides and

Herds a bit of ear was nicked for genetic tests and then there was a surprise you think she’s pregnant yeah she’s look like pregnant and there is the future of the park yes the future Cubs of the park later she awoke and headed out with her future cub

I never imagined it would go so well or so fast in 2018 we did an aerial survey you know so counting only the big animals we counted 100,000 large animals from the air thrilled as he is it wasn’t Wildlife that Drew this 63-year-old Idaho native to

Africa in 2008 he introduced us to the 200,000 people living around the park survivors of the wars living on a dollar a day people had nothing I mean they didn’t have clothes they were wearing Rags or they had made clothes out of tree bark they were eating insects and

Trying to catch mice and you know that’s when it struck me well this National Park’s going to have to help the people today Goran Goa National Park employs 1,600 workers tourism brings in cash which goes to the people and to the park and Greg Carr has partnered with

The government on health care and education Carr is the biggest donor but US foreign aid kicks in about 6 million a year we now work in 89 primary schools which is every single school that surrounds this National Park we are training 600 School teachers right now

Now think about how difficult it is to create a school system when you don’t have school teachers to know how to read and write because of generations of War now something we really focused on as step one was really vulnerable girls now a lot of times what happens in the poor

Families around here A girl turns 13 or 14 and the family says well it’s time for her to get married now may not be what they actually want but they don’t they don’t think there’s another choice and this is what happens and you know she marries a farmer and that’s

It so we started something called The Girls Club there are 3,000 girls in 92 after school clubs the program is led by Lisa soua why is this the job of a Conservation Park why not it should be the job for everyone for everyone education is for everyone the clubs provide the resources

To get the girls into high school and it gives students an answer to our question question which 5 years ago wouldn’t have made sense what do you want to be we have a teacher a nurse a Conservation Park Ranger and another nurse another nurse yes when we started

The program they didn’t know that they had this choice and now they do now they do this land belongs to these people they’ve been here forever it’s their animals it’s their land it’s their trees it’s their cultural and spiritual heritage right it’s an idea that came from my hero Nelson

Mandela the idea was to create a human rights Park you know what does what does that mean right a park that cares about the people a park that belongs to the people so instead of a park turning its back on the people a Park opening itself

To the people and say this is your Park these are your animals these are your opportunities we saw those opportunities on Mount gor which was stripped of trees during the wars here Carr’s nonprofit Foundation is giving away coffee trees 868 family Farmers working for themselves are earning far more than

Ever so they can’t plant trees fast enough which reforest the mountain cars Foundation buys the beans at above the market rate and built the farmers a roasting plant there’s no better example of cars model for lifting people and healing the wild it’s working but the last 14 years

Haven’t been sweet music alone since we were here in 2008 Yes there have been enormous roadblocks to this project that’s right if I had known then what was going to come what came was another civil war in 2013 and then in 2019 a cyclone leveled 100,000 homes okay there was the six

Years of war and then the Cyclone when Cyclone die hit basically every one of our employees became a first responder so in other words oh there’s an elephant right there well there certainly is I just have to stop and say hello to the elephant we couldn’t find the wildlife

Life in 2008 and now they’re interrupting our interview and now they’re walking in on the interview well was there ever a time that you thought to yourself I did my best but this just isn’t going to be humanly possible for a second not for one second with the Cyclones with the

Return of the Civil War I just think every time something like that happens it just makes you more determined not less determined and when you’ve got people suffering in a war that need help or people suffering in a cycle that need help you know you’re more committed you don’t lose

Commitment a time like that we saw commitment in the Rangers who protect the park for the Flora and the fauna they sing We will die for our Park part of what they protect are endangered species including this mammal with a bottomless taste for termites Pengalin are hunted for their scales which are

Prized in folk medicine veterinarian Mercia Angela told us that Pangolin ride on their mother’s backs oh hello there but we found any back will do that’s funny he just naturally goes right up to the shoulder and hangs on your back yeah powerful tail tail yeah the tail is very

Powerful they also use for protection I’m surprised they’re so docel I mean this is a wild animal yes it’s a wild animal success eh but for us the most interesting animal in the park is Greg Carr an entrepreneur with the empathy to see the humility to listen and the

Optimism to act his business model is creating a new ecosystem where animals that were hunted are suddenly worth much more alive how much of your personal Fortune have you put into this well well I’d like to keep that a secret but unfortunately I think uh you know you

Could probably do the math and figure it out it’s more than $100 million my message to anybody with money is um I mean would you going to do stick it all in your casket I mean why not you know why not enjoy the joy of philanthropy I would say to the

Billionaire next door go out and enjoy spending your money to help some people find your gor and Goa go find your gor and Goa and it will bless you more than you can possibly ever bless it there are more than 75,000 Wild Horses roaming public land in the west wild

Horses are the descendants of domesticated horses the first brought here by Spanish explorers 500 years ago by 1971 their numbers were dwindling and Congress stepped in passing a law to protect this romantic fragment of our history it worked almost too well today federal land managers say the number of

Wild horses is nearly three times what it should be and left unchecked their population can double every 5 years so when we heard about a program in Wyoming designed to re in the wild horses and an unlikely group of men we headed west it’s hard to imagine anything

Surviving on this stretch of Badlands in Northern Wyoming Sage Brush blankets the high desert all the way to the Rocky Mountains but in this empty quarter of the cowboy state is a Thundering Herd of Mustangs untouched wild and breathtakingly beautiful but wild horses can also wreck the range lands they roam government

Land managers say in the west wild horses are competing with cattle and Wildlife for increasingly scarce water and food and their overpopulation often further strains the environment so the Federal Bureau of Land Management regularly rounds up wild horses mainly by using small helicopters to locate capture and truck them off to

Corrals or enclose pastures like this one a horse can live for about 20 years and most of these horses will remain here until they die the Wind River Wild Horse Sanctuary outside Lander Wyoming is run by Jess oldum and his family talk about the horses that are here for most

Of them this is it right yes ma’am we have the 225 long-term residents and long-term residents long-term resid sounds like a nursing home that’s what I call them I mean they’re part of our family and and uh they’re going to be here long term and there they go yes

Ma’am the 1400 acre facility is on an Indian Reservation the olds are one of dozens of contractors paid by the government to feed and care for Mustangs after they’ve been removed from the wild activists want the horses to remain free why not just let the wild horses be wild

And run the harsh reality is ecosystems are delicate balance of each species coexisting together in the environment there is a limited amount of resources in grass and water and wild horses are very dominant species they’re smart they’re fast they eat a lot of food um and they need to be properly managed

Keeping count of all those horses is Hollywood Dell the division chief of the program that oversees wild horses for the Bureau of Land Management how many wild horses is the government now caring for so we are currently caring for over 57,000 wild horses and caring for them

Is not inexpensive no uh the cost of care for wild horses in our off-range Corral and pastures was 2third of our budget last year which was a little over $70 million $70 million to care for the wild horses taxpayer dollars to relieve some of the burden on taxpayers last year the bureau says

3,742 Mustangs came off the government roles through an incentive program that pays individuals $1,000 to adopt one Wild Horses attract relatively few takers but these horses did picked for their youth balance and temperament that are sent to be trained in ofal places prisons like the Wyoming honor

Farm it’s a 640 acre compound of Tidy buildings manicured Lawns cattle and enough hay to feed them it may look like a dude ranch but this is a statun minimum security prison with felons working the land and the horses there are no Towers or armed guards a simple

4ft cattle fence marks the perimeter between the prison and the town of Riverton Wyoming you know Wyoming has a tendency to do things a little differently cuz we’re at smaller State and I think uh it’s one of those things until you see it you can’t actually believe it yourself Curtis Moffett has

Spent his entire career in Corrections he’s the warden on the farm and about the only one here who doesn’t wear cowboy boots to work the thing that struck me when you drive up you see a 4ot high cattle fence what’s to stop an inmate from making a run for it or

Riding off into the sunset realistically himself most of these guys are at the end of their sentence so most of them don’t want to destroy that or you know catch another number um do another five years or so it’s on them to make sure that they’re going to do things the

Right way most inmates have earned the right to be here transferred for good behavior from more restrictive state prisons and each day about 30 inmates report to work in a maze of shoots and pens with wild horses weighing up to 1,000 lbs their job is to transform

These Mustangs from Wild burdens of the state into riding horses that can fetch thousands at auction these guys are here to do their time but it’s really about changing their life put a change in them in a positive direction Travis shman is the Cowboy In Charge he’s the manager of

The farm come on beauty queens shman spent his life teaching the art of training horses it shows in a stride kinked by old fractures have you ever had a halter on this horse Mr suor and a voice both firm and calm as much for the

Inmates as the horses do the Rope A Dope and throw the rope into your hand do not get kicked it takes time to train a wild horse but shman says there’s nothing special about how it starts you walk him in there like you just kind of rip off

The Band-Aid and a human goes in there don’t chase him whoa what’s the next step then you teach them to yield the pressure so you stop the forward movement teach them that if they move forward towards you the pressure goes away and then from there you get to

Where you can touch them you get to where you can pet them introduce a get them halter broke and then you have that trust like they understand if they give up their right of flight to stay with you there’s some trust there are you talking about the horses or the the

Horses keep going hey we are in the people business and helping the horses is extra but the guys really learn a lot of life lessons from the horses they learn the try they learn to not lie to thems about their feelings they learn to control whether it’s the highest of high

Emotions or the lowest of low emotions no one here breaks a horse the method used at the farm is called gentling force is replaced by patience persistence and an even Keel good job in any pen on any day you can see it play out a ballet in Dusty boots a

Delicate dance of inches repeated 100 times over days in the making for this the first human touch next door a Mustang in full Gallop a runaway train yields and stops on command there you go you got a good win we’re watching all these things step by step by step but this doesn’t happen

Overnight no sometimes it’ll take four weeks sometimes it’ll take four months to do these steps and a wild horse Takes a little bit longer sometimes Michael Davis has been riding horses his whole life he’s serving 15 to 20 years for voluntary manslaughter he’s eligible for parole in a little over 3

Years if you’re mad if you’re scared that horse knows before you ever even touch him you know that how they know I don’t you have to control your feelings considerably with the horse because it it is so easy for for them to pick up on your mood so you’re good at controlling

Your feelings with the horse but with people how are you doing not real great still working that have my moments I’m still working on it but we’re getting better Davis is an old cowboy what of only a few inmates here who can handle this this horse has never had a man on

Its back until now hey whoa a remarkable skill that can’t be acquired without a few scars I’ve got broken ankle a separated shoulder a broken collar bone ditches in my head broken hand fingers lots of fingers what’s the program taught you what’s it meant to you a

Little piece of freedom I mean I’m wearing boots and jeans instead of hospital scrubs and I mean it’s hot out here but it’s a get hot it’s as close to being outside as I can get until I get outside out here it’s easy to forget this is a prison with 300 inmates under

The watchful eye of warden mofet people at home will say like these guys are felons they’ve done Terrible Things committed awful crimes ruined families why should they have be allowed to be out here to be trusted to be working with these horses we don’t provide the sense to them we don’t provide the

Punishment for them the judge decided all that um our job is supervise them while they’re in here um and hopefully return them to society is where they’re responsible individuals where they can be law-abiding citizens I I think this program goes a long way to do that and I

Want to make sure they get out and and we can believe that they’re going to be successful and they aren’t going to reoffend you want to make sure right that the horses aren’t returned and the inmates don’t return is that fair to say right in Wyoming the recidivism rate is

Below 30% and if you’re wondering about that 4T cattle fence well the warden says in the last 22 years fewer than 10 inmates have made a run for it come back down to a walk staying on the right side of the fence is not lost on pton suor an

Inmate serving 7 to 10 years for aggravated assault he transferred from a Maximum Security Prison a year ago and came here with no experience working with horses what’s it like to step into a in the first time with a wild 800 lb horse adrenaline heart pounding

Excitement but I was excited to do it cuz once you get a horse to go the direction you want and then come and join up to you and you turn around and he’s right there and it’s like wow this animal this connection this feeling I can’t explain it what has this taught

You about yourself it’s taught me responsibility it’s taught me what I want to do for a career when I get out of here this makes you look at life a whole different way whoa and sukur’s patience and feel are paying off at auction a gilding like this one could sell for thousands but

It’s not without a little heartache is it hard to see them go it is but at the same time we’re not doing this just for us we’re doing it for them too it’s a second chance for them as well have you rid him without a tie down yes ma’am

This setember the honor Farm held its second auction of the Year hundreds of buyers came to the prison from all over the country to inspect these horses and query their trainers little like kicking the tires on a Car Lot H $500 now make it make it anybody each Mustang takes the main

Stage trotting and loping sold to the highest bidder sold out 2500 all right here we go in all 34 horses fetch $65,000 for the Bureau of Land Management an achievement almost as good as the look on the inmates faces but remember Michael Davis the old cowboy who couldn’t be bucked we noticed

He wasn’t at the auction the warden told us he was suspended for not getting along with others gentling a horse and rehabilitating the man don’t always happen on the same clock by High Noon every Mustang had a new home and for this Wild Bunch gentling has its choose I think I know

The answer to this if you were betting man would you bet a psychologist as quicker to change the behavior of man a doctor a therapist or a horse I think a horse 100% And that’s just purely Travis shootman talking but the horses are a major role in what betters those men

They can teach you life lessons every step every way teach you that you got something in you that you didn’t think you had they can teach you that it’s okay to be afraid but it can still be done nothing’s impossible there’s so many life lessons

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