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SUSANVILLE, Calif. – Preliminary veterinarian results indicate that 25 wild horse foals held at the Bureau of Land Management’s Litchfield Corrals may have died from colitis, or inflammation of the colon, according to a news release. Additional tests are ongoing and the BLM is waiting for results from blood and tissue samples that could point to the cause of the colitis.

The foals, all under 6 months old, were awaiting adoption, when on Oct. 2 BLM wranglers noticed signs of a flu-like illness in some animals, all of which were housed in a single pen. The wranglers consulted a veterinarian and treated symptoms, but the condition of the foals gradually worsened over the week of Oct. 2.

The foals affected by the illness were kept in an isolated pen. There have been no signs of illness in the other 300 mustangs in the main pastures of the corrals.

The foals were born at the corrals to mares that had been gathered last September from the Devil’s Garden Wild Horse Territory on the Modoc National Forest.