Onaqui Rescues

 Red Birds Trust Board Member Rescues

Cheyenne Grace

Unlike the Onaqui rescues, Cheyenne Grace’s story in the wild will likely never be known.  Because of her brand we know that she was once a member of the Swasey herd here in Utah and as of October 2021 is estimated to be 2 years old.  She was captured and removed from the range on July 24, 2020 then adopted to her first placement on September 8th, 2020.

She was then dropped off at the Delta, Utah Wild Horse and Burro facility in September 2021 after her owner could no longer care for her or the other pinto gelding they had adopted at the same time a year prior.

After her return she was temporarily housed with the two geldings in the back of the facility while the 300 Onaqui horses were readied for adoption.  Visitors of the facility had no idea she was there and she needed time to put on weight and recover because she was very, very thin and had no foot care whatsoever at her previous home.

As luck would have it, right before a week of closures at the facility the returned Swasey horses were placed in with the Onaqui making them now visible for those who came to visit the Onaqui. 

Cheyenne Grace stole the hearts of several volunteers in no time and as with all things in life that suddenly become certain, it became certain to Jen that this very skinny mare with half her mane chewed off but bright, shiny, loving eyes needed to be the final family member of wild horses adopted to live their best forever lives with Jen.

Cheyenne Grace was adopted the very second that the Delta holding facility opened once again for public visitation on October 18, 2021 and on October 20, 2021 she finally came to live in her forever home. 



Dreamcatcher was just that – an almost ethereal little curious, loving, patient and kind little colt that was absolutely loved and adored by the yearlings in his band.  He was born at the end of March 2021.  Red Bird took the role as Dreamcatcher’s lead care taker since his dam Marley had her hands full with now two babies – yearilng Little Star and new born Dreamcatcher.  Red Bird would groom him, stand guard over him while he slept, and so very gently teach him the beginning lessons of how to stand and play.

Even as a wee one, Dreamcatcher had such a kind, curious nature about him and a quiet confidence which allowed him to carefully expand his horizons further away from his mom than most to meet new horse friends and assess new humans that may show up.  While careful, he was never unreasonable about his level of caution and took on new experiences with relative ease.

We’ll never know what must have gone through his mind during the July 2021 roundup where at only a little over 4 months of age he was chased by a helicopter with the rest of his band, loaded into a stock trailer and then inadvertently separated from his mom, sister and all the other horses he knew.  How this precious little soul slipped through the cracks will never be known, but the second that the Onaqui release happened and Marley and Little Star appeared back on the range without Dreamcatcher alarm bells began sounding far and wide.

Although it was deemed unsafe by the BLM to return him to his mother and sister in the wild after 6 weeks separation in the holding pens, he has finally been reunited with one of the three amigos – Teton – who helped to guide him to being the wonderful little perfect horse he is today.

Dreamcatcher brings nothing but joy to anyone who’s fortunate enough to be in his presence and he will be able to live out the rest of his life with Jen, Teton and Cheyenne Grace.



Teton was born in the spring of 2020 into a band lead by the lovely grey stallion known as Goliath.  Teton, Red Bird and Little Star were the three baby mustang amigos of the Onaqui world and were never more than a few feet apart.  Little Star was born to mare Marley a tad later that spring, and Red Bird was the last to be born in early fall to a striking grey mare called Misty.

The three amigos were always such a joy to be around!  They were constantly trying to test boundaries with Little Star in the lead and Teton as her trusted backup.  And never to be left behind came Red Bird bringing up the tail end of the trio trying to be as brave as his two besties.   All three babies entered their gangly, fluffy teenage stage as winter began to envelop the west.  As spring brought with it warming temperatures and melting snow the babies began to shed their thick winter coats.

Months quickly passed and spring turned to summer all the while the three amigos grew and grew.  And as luck would have it Marley had become pregnant by a handsome, brawny roan stallion somewhere along the way and she gave birth to a little baby bay colt who would become known as Dreamcatcher.  The three amigos doted and fawned over the newest addition and while Red Bird stood guard while Dreamcatcher lay soundly sleeping under the summer sun, Teton began exploring further from home finding friends in nearby bands to practice his sparing, tussling and grooming.

Teton has lived up to his name turning into a mountain sized gelding, but despite his size he never lost his sweetness or gentle heart.  There was absolutely zero question when the news of his capture and transfer to the Delta facility became known that he would be adopted and brought home to join Jen’s expanding fur family and stay safe in the West Utah desert where he’d been born and raised a short distance away.


Kona and Esme

These two young ladies' silent journey started when they were removed from the range in the September 2019 roundup. As fillies, The Utah Wild Horse and Burro facility in Delta facilitated their first adoption only to be returned in 2021. Little is known about Kona and Esme’s story or what they may have been through.

Once again, they found themselves back in a BLM holding pen in Delta among 300 other Onaqui Mustangs from the July 2021 roundup.  Both were in a side pen quietly counting their days as potential adaptors came to visit the more well-known mustangs.

Alisa was introduced to Kone and Esme during a visit to the Delta holding facility in October. Kone is a deep brown bay and Esme is a chestnut sorrel with white hind socks. They have simple beauty, an old soul, and a young spirit. It did not take long for Alisa to realize that they were the true reason she made the trip to Delta. Their soft eyes and the slight brush against Alisa’s hand with their nose gave her the sense that they didn’t need rescue but were asking for a chance.  

On December 23, 2021, Alisa adopted Kona and Esme. Finally, they could complete their long journey to their forever home and have a chance to live a life as a horse that is loved. 

 Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash's story is long and there are some pieces missing we will probably never understand, but it is detailed at length here for those that would like to know more.  He is a darling little black gelding who was given by his original adopter in Colorado to a "trainer" to be used as a pack horse and subsquently was dumped in a kill pen in Kansas 2 months later which is where we found him.

With the help of supportive donors we were able to bail him out of the kill pen, get him to a safe quarantine location and then 30 days later he finally made his journey back home to Utah where he belongs and was adopted by a Red Birds Trust board member and taken home to live out the rest of his long life with Onaqui mares Kona and Esme and a rescued domestic pony named Stevie Knickers.


The following rescues have graciously opened their arms to our Onaqui horses.

We hope that everyone who loves them will follow along with their journey and support their caretakers in giving them the best possible future.

 Wild Heart Sanctuary, Park City Utah


 Grace (Mare) & Bliss (filly) North HMA                  Leilani (baby filly) in the South HMA                         Giraffe (pinto mare) South HMA

 Dreamchasers PMU Rescue & Rehabilitation (GFAS Accredited), Falcon Missouri


 Denali & her colt Mystique                Hope (left) & Whinney (right)           Potter (right) and colt Hedwig             Polyanna (buckskin mare)
     Clover from the South HMA

 Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue, Langcaster California

https://wildhorserescue.org/       All geldings pictured below were older, sale authority geldings at high risk who were                                                                                             adopted by Lifesavers to allow them to live their lives safely and freely


 Engler Canyon Ranch, Colorado


 Dotty (mare) South HMA                        Sparrow South HMA                           Evander North HMA                       Stetson South HMA
 Dalia - North HMA Mare                         Copper (R) & Nickel (L)                 Tess (born in BLM facility)              Little Red (L) & Grandma (R)
 King North HMA Stallion                          Princess & 7258 (sorrel)                Princess, Dutchess & Tess                               7275
                            Bootes                              Dotty, Sparrow & mare 8127


 Mustang Journey, Cincinnati Ohio


Adam from the North HMA

Spirit from the North HMA

Sage (South) & Cinnamon (North)

Momma Mare (north)


 Paradise Dreams Sanctuary


 Essence from the South HMA         Sonnet (mare) from North HMA         Astreus from the South HMA           Faith (mare) from South HMA
Armani from the North HMA                   Faith from the South HMA          Quinn (foal) from the North HMA   Sakari & her foal born after adoption
 Esperanza & her foal born after adoption

 Sweetbeau Horses


 Whiskey River tag #7853                          Bowie tag #7959                         Windwalker tag #7882                       Traubadour tag # 7956
 Tavish tag #7937                                   GQ  tag #7920                                     Snickers tag #7922                         Bandero tag #7886
 Sundance tag #7359                                   Stetson tag #7404                         Peacemaker tag #7361                   Ghost tag #7357
           Bandit tag #7358                              Bentley tag #7585

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