Did you know New Jersey’s state animal is the horse?

This goes against common perceptions of New Jersey that include endless highways and oil refineries that don’t leave much room for green pasture. In reality, there is 1 horse for every 323 people in New Jersey – in a state of 9 million – you do the math! This is all to say that New Jersey has a strong and lively equine culture.

Yet somehow, New Jerseyans have had little exposure to America’s wild horses. There are 82,000 horses & burros in the wild, with nearly an additional 45,000 in government holding pens waiting to be adopted. Despite so many horses being up for adoption, New Jerseyans have only adopted 368 wild horses and burros over the years straight from the Bureau of Land Management (which does not include private sales, rescues/organizations & auctions).

New Jersey – we can do better!

My goal with “Mustangs of NJ” is to introduce New Jerseyans and the greater East Coast to the magic of America’s wild horses through my photos of these wondrous creatures. With work being done to more easily facilitate adoptions of horses into East Coast families, my hope is these photos will inspire viewers to learn more about America’s wild horses and that ultimately adoptions will grow.

I hope you enjoy this photo series as much as I have putting it together! Now let’s meet the horses!

*NJ horse statistics are from


From: Murderer’s Creek, OR
Now Lives: Scotch Plains, NJ
Age/Sex: 7 years old, Gelding
Color: Bay
Personality: He’s a horse with a sense of humor, that is extremely intelligent, athletic, witty, and charming.
*Jamie Note* Drifter is certainly one-of-a-kind. Intelligent like no other, he understood that I wanted to take his picture, and would stay completely still with his ears perked and head looking at the camera. Then after the shot he would come over and cuddle and look for treats :)
How did Drifter come into your life? I found him through my friend, Brittani Bojum.

AdoptEr: Sam cameron



From: Antelope Hills, WY
Now Lives: Tri-Brook Equestrian Center in New Egypt, NJ
Age/Sex: 6 years old, Mare
Color: Bay
Personality: Curious, sweet natured and a people-lover.
*Jamie Note* She loves her bummed scratched!
How did Taote come into your life? In 2017 Taote, along with another mustang, Shasta, was observed being loaded onto a slaughter truck in Shippensburg PA; the shipper was willing to sell them, and two rescues sprung into action to raise the cash. I met the two when they came to Chesterfield Farm where I had several horses boarded. I adopted both. Unfortunately Shasta from Red Rocks Lake passed away of an aneurysm several months later in her field.

AdoptEr: Pamela hunter



From: Northern Nevada (HMA TBD)
Now Lives: Bordentown, NJ
Age/Sex: 17 years old, Gelding
Color: Golden Buckskin
Personality: Curious, mellow and confident. He is sweet and tolerates all my attention, affection and training. He likes carrots, but not apples so much - however, he will take apples from me because he knows I want him to and it makes me happy. He won’t take them from anyone else, only carrots! He is independent and doesn’t rely on or bond quickly with pasture mates - but he finally found a friend in his current barn!!
*Jamie Note* Dusty was spunky and entertaining! His zest for life is inspiring.
How did Dusty come into your life? I went to an auction of green broke mustangs at the prison in Riverton, WY. Then we brought Dusty to the Steve Mantle Ranch in Wheatland, WY for training.

AdoptEr: Marcella Bodner



From: Buttercup was born at Canon City Holding Facility in Colorado.
Now Lives: Seaton Hackney Stables, Morristown NJ
Age/Sex: 8 years old, Mare
Color: Gray
Personality: She is very sweet and affectionate and loves to be groomed by the kids at Seaton Hackney Stables. She's eager to please for a soft rider but gets super sassy if you are too handsy with the reins.
*Jamie Note* She is seriously the most friendly mustang! She was a ham for the camera and was a rockstar.
How did Buttercup come into your life? She was adopted from the 2014 Extreme Mustang Makeover after Cat Zimmerman competed for her very first time. 

Adopter: Marc Schumacher


Defazio aka Fez

From: Divide Basin, WY
Now Lives: Howell, NJ
Age/Sex: 14 years old, Gelding
Color: Bay
Personality: Fez is a goofy workaholic, who pretends to be aloof unless you have cookies, then he is your best friend pocket pony!
*Jamie Note* I can confirm the above description :)
How did Fez come into your life? I did the big no no and bought him green broke, sight unseen from Dream Horse.

AdoptEr: kate tomlinson vogel



From: Adobe Town, WY
Now Lives: Seaton Hackney Stables, Morristown NJ
Age/Sex: 8 years old, Mare
Color: Chestnut
Personality: Ariel is always happy and doesn’t have a mean bone in her body, she loves to bob her head to music and play with anything she can get her lips on!
*Jamie Note* Ariel had a sweetness to her that emanated from her body. But just as much as she was sweet she was also a very sassy redheaded lady!
How did Ariel come into your life? She was adopted at the 2016 Extreme Mustang Makeover in Massachusetts.

Adopter: Kaitlin Muldoon



From: Pancake, NV
Now Lives: Unbridled Heroes Project in Allendale NJ.
Age/Sex: 8 years old, Mare
Color: Dark Brown
Personality: She is a scrappy fiesta girl!!! She is super sweet but can hold her own!! Sassy and sweet!!!
*Jamie Note* This sweet girl stole my heart. She would look at me with these big doe eyes and I would melt.
How did Shiloh come into your life? She came into my life through Cat Zimmerman and Meg Deitner. Cat told me that she needed a home and from there I reached out to Meg and the rest is history!!

AdoptEr: Amy Demetra



From: Pryor Mountains, MT
Now Lives: Farmingdale, NJ
Age/Sex: 13 years old, Mare
Color: Golden Dun
Personality: Flax is a farm favorite with her sweet personality and kind eyes. On the trail, she’s probably the bravest yet laziest horse I have ever met, which makes me love her to pieces. There isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t count my blessings that she fell into my life.
How did Flax come into your life? My husband and I adopted Flax through The Cloud Foundation after they got her out of a bad situation. To read her full adoption story please visit this link!

AdoptEr: Jamie Baldanza



From: Born in the Axtell, UT Holding Facility
Now Lives: Seaton Hackney Stables, Morristown NJ
Age/Sex: 1 year old, Mare
Color: Bay
Personality: She is sweet, gentle, playful and affectionate. She's smart and picks training lightning quick. She's my perfect lil' bean. 
*Jamie Note* I just wanted to bundle Serenity up and put her in my pocket. She was so fun to photograph because of her youthful playfulness. I cannot wait to see this girl grow up.
How did Serenity come into your life? Cat Zimmerman, Youth Mustang Trainer, helped me adopt her. It was love at first sight. 




From: Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Now Lives: Farmingdale, NJ
Age/Sex: 5 years old, Gelding
Color: Blue Roan with Badger Marking
Personality: Valor is a giant goofball! But don’t be fooled by his silly demeanor, because behind is quirky personality is an extremely intelligent boy ready to learn.
How did Valor come into your life? Valor was adopted straight from the wild through the North Dakota Badlands Horse auction at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. To read his adoption story please visit this link!

*Jamie Note* Valor doesn’t have the traditional BLM freeze brand. His herd is managed through the National Park System and not the Bureau of Land Management.

AdoptEr: Jamie Baldanza


From: Divide Basin, WY
Now Lives: Unbridled Heroes Project in Allendale NJ.
Age/Sex: 9 years old, Mare
Color: She is black but has highlights!
Personality: She is the most honest, kind soul around. She is sweet and trusting despite her past.
*Jamie Note* There was something really special about this girl, and you could tell she had seen and experienced a lot. However, there was this certain peace about her which makes me believe that she knew this is where she was meant to be.
How did Hope come into your life? She came into my life through CZ Mustangs, she was horribly abused and neglected before Cat Zimmerman took her in. I met her this summer and knew we had to take this special Mustang that she belonged with us.

AdoptEr: Amy Demetra



From: Cedar Mountains, UT
Now Lives: Colts Neck, NJ
Age/Sex: 10 years old, Mare
Color: Dark Brown
Personality: Lovable and wonderful!
*Jamie Note* She is extremely intelligent. When asked to do something you can see her little wheels spinning in her head!
How did Tang come into your life? Tang was adopted through the Rutgers University Program. She didn't get auctioned off right away and was considered a three striker (sale eligible) which means I received ownership right away.

AdoptEr: Sherry styzle lipira

Floyd (Burro)

From: Double A, AZ
Now Lives: Farmingdale, NJ
Age/Sex: 8 years old, John
Color: Sandy
Personality: Floyd is extremely shy, but when he is comfortable he is a cuddle bear and loves scratches. His unique and quirky personality makes him a perfect addition to our family!
How did Floyd come into your life? I adopted Floyd through Helping Hearts & The US Wild Horse & Burro Association.

AdoptEr: Jamie Baldanza



From: Divide Basin, WY
Now Lives: Seaton Hackney Stables, Morristown NJ
Age/Sex: 8 years old, Mare
Color: Gray
Personality: Eleanor is a careful, soft horse. She tries to understand and do the right thing for her rider. 
*Jamie Note* This beauty was very shy but very inquisitive and loving!
How did Eleanor come into your life? She was adopted from the 2014 Extreme Mustang Makeover after Cat Zimmerman competed for her very first time. 

Adopter: Marc Schumacher



From: Nevada (HMA TBD)
Now Lives: Unbridled Heroes Project in Allendale NJ
Age/Sex: 5 years old, Mare
Color: Black
Personality: Chirpa has this fearless stoic sense about her. She is gentle, but remains the queen at our farm. We are still figuring out this Stoic Queen.
*Jamie Note* With her frost bitten ears this chica reminded me of the fiercest yet cutest little bear cub there is :)
How did Chirpa come into your life? She came straight from the holding pens, then to a T.I.P. trainer, Rob West and then to us!

AdoptEr: Amy Demetra


Dun Doing Time
aka Daenerys

From: Antelope Valley, NV
Now Lives: Seaton Hackney Stables, Morristown NJ
Age/Sex: 6 years old, Mare
Color: Red Dun
Personality: She is curious with a very active mind, very protective of her humans, and tries her hardest all the time!
*Jamie Note* She is very appropriately named! The sophisticated sass that comes from this mare, screams the “Dragon Queen” on “Game of Thrones!”
How did Daenerys come into your life? We met her at the 2017 Massachusetts Extreme Mustang Makeover. After initially losing her bid, I met with the trainer who then sold her too me privately!

AdoptEr: Kaitlin Muldoon



From: White Mountain, WY
Now Lives: Farmingdale, NJ
Age/Sex: 10 years old, Mare
Color: Chestnut
Personality: I would say in my 20 years of working with horses, Cheyenne is the sweetest and smartest horse I have ever worked with. I could teach her something and not practice it again for months and she will still instantly remember it, she is incredible like that.
*Jamie Note* Cheyenne is just gorgeous! I couldn’t stop looking at her. She was the first mustang I shot for this project and will hold a very special place in my heart.
How did Cheyenne come into your life? We got Cheyenne at the USWHBA Gentled Adoption Day event at Ricks Saddle Shop in Cream Ridge, NJ.

AdoptEr: Amy Kirschner

Interested In Adopting?

  • Local BLM Adoption Events (NJ is not on the schedule as of yet for 2019, but I’m hoping they add it!)

  • Internet BLM Adoption The BLM has a brand new site, to make online adoptions easier. They are constantly updating so make sure to check back. The forever horse may be waiting for you :)

  • Extreme Mustang Makeover - There isn’t a NJ EMM yet, but I know people are asking for one. They typically come to the NE so make sure to check out their site for more info.

  • Mustang Heritage Foundation - Check out certified “Tip” trainers from all over the country that will help you adopt a wild horse or burro.

  • If you have any more more ways or suggestions NJ residents can adopt please contact me here.

Local Mustang Tip Trainers & Gentling

James Red Duffey (NJ)
James is the only TIP trainer in NJ. He sees this as a really cool opportunity to show the amazing personalities and trainability of the American Mustangs. James describes the TIP program as awesome because it allows equestrians, who may not have the time, facility, or ability to train an untouched mustang, to acquire a halter trained horse for the same $125 price as an untrained one. He has halter trained 5 mustangs and competed in 2 Extreme Mustang Makeovers. James absolutely loves the mustang breed for their versatility and heart. Whatever you ask a mustang to do, they will try with all of their heart. Mustangs come in all shapes, sizes, builds, and colors. He has worked with a yearling as small as 12hh and an adult as tall as 15.3/16hh. The horses’ builds have been just as diverse, from a yearling that “looked like somebody’s thoroughbred got out” to a short dense mare built more for reining. The American Mustang is a wonderful breed that many people are uneducated about, and he would love to get more trained mustangs out into the world to be great ambassadors. To contact James instant message him on facebook or email at

US Wild Horse & Burro Association (NJ) - The USWHBA is dedicated to the promotion, adoption, and enjoyment of all of America's wild equine breeds. They will gentle a wild horse or burro that someone adopts to get them good about being caught, led, tied, blacksmith, loading, blankets/saddle and lunge. To contact them click here.

Chelsea Gammon Bowen (PA)
Chelsea is a TIP trainer and will do private gentling as well (for example, if someone wanted one from the Internet adoption that isn’t TIP eligible). She is also available to do further training past the TIP requirements. Her training style is a combination of low energy pressure release/approach and retreat with positive reinforcement incorporated. To contact Chelsea email

Paulina Musialek (NJ)
Paulina is from Jackson, New Jersey. She is currently in the process of becoming a certified TIP trainer, with the intentions of gentling and placing these magnificent mustangs into loving homes. Her plan is to give a good introduction to domestication by providing a solid foundation for these wild horses. Her training style is a mix of Western and English, with some liberty work. She calls it “The Classical Cowgirl Method.” Paulina believes that every horse is different, therefore, she usually will change some aids to engage with different horse brains so they can get a better understanding between horse and human. You can contact Paulina by cell #732-979-4237 or @Sobolhorsemanship on facebook.

Cat Zimmerman (FL & will transport to NJ)
At CZ Mustangs, we not only train mustangs as part of the Mustang Heritage Foundation’s Trainer Incentive Program (TIP) and Extreme Mustang Makeover, but we also take in mustangs who need more training, rescue mustangs that are in bad situations, and retrain surrendered mustangs to find them forever homes. Our Florida facility houses a Mustang Education Center for educating visitors and we provide support for mustang owners across the country. Our goal is to ensure that mustangs and their owners have the best resources and support to maximize their relationship. As we are originally from New Jersey and still have links to the state, we have plenty of resources available to transport mustangs to and from that area in order to help NJ mustang owners.

Check out my latest project!

My docu-series titled "Taking Back The West" will transport you to America's western frontier where Wild Horses & Burros roam free. Filmed across 10 states over millions of acres of BLM lands. Join me on a journey to discover the beautiful yet harsh, lives of America's Wild Horses. I am currently fundraising to film the pilot.

Have a Mustang or Burro and live in NJ? Sign up for round 2!

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