Ginger Kathrens, wild-horse advocate, filmmaker, executive director of The Cloud Foundation

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Ginger Kathrens —wild-horse advocate, filmmaker, and executive director of The Cloud Foundation—discusses the mustang, Cloud, who is the focus of three of her films, and the namesake of the Foundation she founded, whose stated mission is dedication “to the preservation of wild horses and burros on public lands, with a special focus on Cloud’s herd in the Pryor Mountains of Montana.” 07-07-2016_HorseRescue_unnamed-5-2-285x280Kathrens recalls that when she was asked to make a film about wild horses, she didn’t know much about any kind of horses, but learned through research and pre-production—and, in the course of shooting, one day she spotted a striking all-white foal, whom she named Cloud. In response to my observation that I believe a lot of people have trouble sorting out what exactly are the salient issues when The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) says that wild horses do not belong on public lands—and, in some cases, starts rounding up those horses, Kathrens outlines the financial, political and other forces that have 14370261_10154531493638390_4254984922137769387_nshaped, and re-shaped, BLM policy—let’s just say that cattle ranchers, and their needs (and resources and influence) figure prominently into the ever-evolving saga. She wryly observes that she was somehow appointed to the national BLM advisory board, and for example, the board voted on whether the BLM should dispose of the horses they have accumulated; the vote was 8-1 in favor, Kathrens noting she cast the lone dissenting vote. She says that concerned horse lovers can contact their legislators to push for more mustang-friendly laws and policies, and much information and guidance toward that end can be found on The Cloud Foundation website. (www.thecloudfoundation.org)

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ALSO: I spoke briefly with Dina Athanassie of the Animal Coalition of Tampa (ACT) about the organization’s 10th Annual Spay-ghetti Dinner and Silent Auction, set to take place April 29 at Yuengling Brewery Biergarten in Tampa. (http://actampa.org)

COMEDY CORNER: Jerry Seinfeld’s “Horses” (excerpt) (http://jerryseinfeld.com)

MUSIC: Rebekah Pulley’s “Talking Animals Theme,” instrumentals

 NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: Elton John’s “Crocodile Rock”

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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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