Ninety-six horses are found dead north of New Salem.
The Morton County Sheriff's Department has seized 119 horses after finding the other dead horses at a ranch north of New Salem over the weekend.
Sheriff Dave Shipman says there's adequate feed and water for horses being cared for on scene, but twenty-five in bad condition are being removed today.
Dave Shipman, Morton Co. Sheriff says, "You got a case of neglect, you got a case of horses just not being taken care of. I just felt that we had to intervene, someone has to be able to take care of these horses, it's obvious he can't do it all by himself. I think he just got overwhelmed with how many horses he's got. He's got a soft heart for horses, he doesn't want to seem them go to the slaughter barn and it just got to be too much for one person
They are attempting to feed these horses, they do have water which is also very important for them and I'm assuming they are probably they will probably try to add some protein mineral to help these horses recover a little bit. The next few days are supposed to be very cold with very bad wind chills and were certainly concerned about the ongoing welfare of these animals," says Morton County Commissioner Bruce Strinden.
Strinden says from what he was told the animals likely died over a period of several months.
The state's attorney's office will be considering whether to file charges in the case.
Authorities did not identify the ranch owner.
Shipman says the man is retired and "just got in way, way over his head." He says the man is cooperating.
State Veterinarian Susan Keller says recent cold weather likely played a big role in the high death toll, along with a lack of adequate food and water.