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Discovery’s ‘River of No Return’ to Pull Scene Where Cast Member Hits Horse With a Hammer (Exclusive)

PETA issued a letter to Idaho authorities Thursday

Discovery Channel is removing a five-second scene from Sunday’s episode of “River of No Return” in which a cast member hits a horse with a hammer after PETA issued a letter to Idaho’s Lemhi County Sheriff’s Office requesting a criminal investigation into the incident Thursday.

“That scene will never air again on Discovery,” a spokesperson for Discovery said in an exclusive statement to TheWrap Thursday, regarding any future reruns of the episode on television, online or on the Discovery GO app.

In the scene, which aired on Oct. 27, Ron Ens, a cast member on the show, is seen striking a tethered horse with a metal hammer typically used for horse-shoeing. PETA has also requested that Discovery remove the episode and cut ties with Ens. You can watch PETA’s clip of the scene here.

“River of No Return” is described as following a small community of people who live in Idaho’s remote Frank Church Wilderness, where the only way in or out is by plane — or, for the brave, by boat across the perilous Salmon River. The series premiered Oct. 6 and is currently airing its first season on Sundays at 9/8c.

On Discovery’s website, Ens is described as “a modern day cowboy of the B Bar C Ranch” whose job involves shoeing horses and leading pack trains through the Frank Church Wilderness. Ens did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment Thursday.

The series is produced for Discovery Channel by Spoke Studios, a Wheelhouse Entertainment company, in association with ITV America and Inspired Entertainment. Executive producers include Brent Montgomery, Ed Simpson, Joe Weinstock, Will Nothacker, Jason Carey, John Gray and Dirk Gibson, with Sean Stack as co-executive producer. For Discovery Channel, Michael Gara will executive produce and Greg Wolf will serve as coordinating producer.