Horse News

BLM Solicits Sterilization of Wild Horses

by Debbie Coffey, Director of Wild Horse Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Family Lost...The BLM, with Dean Bolstad as the Program Office Point of Contact (POC), continues to waste tax dollars on experimentation on wild horses & burros, which is a clear violation of the Wild Free Roaming Horse & Burro Act of 1971.  The BLM is NOT protecting wild horses when it uses them for experimentation (under the guise of “research”).

This is going to be done ON THE RANGE.  They will trap the wild horses & burros and do the experimentation IN THE FIELD.  The BLM is creating NON-REPRODUCING HERDS, which leads to EXTINCTION.  Most wild horse & burro herds are ALREADY NON-VIABLE.

The BLM has been gelding for a long time.  They already have the methods.  They already have chemical and surgical ways to sterilize/use contraception.

The BLM is doing this experimentation while they continue ongoing bait-trapping and helicopter roundups, without accountability or public access.

The BLM is using the word “RESEARCH” as a coverup.  Notice the solicitation below is open-ended (there are no time or number limitations).  So how many wild horses and burros, and what herds, will be subjected as part of this experimentation?  It could be all of them.


For a Proposed Financial Assistance Agreement (AA)
1. Title and Description:
A. Proposed Name or Title of Project/Program:

B. Description of Project/Program.
This Request for Information invites research project ideas aimed at refining techniques and establishing protocols for the permanent sterilization or contraception of either male or female wild horses and/or burros in the field. While these projects would be conducted in a controlled environment, the final goal of this work would be to apply the refined sterilization or contraception techniques to free-roaming animals on the range, so please keep that environment in mind when presenting ideas. Any sterilization or contraceptive method, including surgical, chemical, pharmaceutical, or mechanical (such as IUDs) approaches, will be considered (with the exception of surgical castration).

We are particularly interested in the following components of a potential protocol:
1. The logistics of the full procedure as applied in wild horses and burros: a) pre-operative procedures, b) restraint techniques required, c) sedation and anesthesia protocols, d) the method of sterilization or contraception, e) post-operative care required, f) recovery time and follow-up
2. Animal welfare and practitioner safety considerations (due to the wild nature of these animals on the range)
3. Expected efficacy and duration of sterilization or contraception
4. Anticipated effects on the health of mares or jennies: What are the limitations that the stage of gestation may place on the procedure? Can the procedure be conducted on pregnant mares? Will the procedure cause miscarriage in pregnant mares?
5. Projected approximate cost of the refined procedure per animal as applied in the field
6. Approximate total budget required to implement the research project idea

C. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number and title?
15.229 Wild Horse and Burro Resource Management

2. Legislative Authority that authorizes BLM to enter into this AA:
A. Specific legislative authority for this project/program?
Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971, Public Law 92-195, as amended, Section 1336 and Section 1333.b.2.iv.B
B. How does the legislative authority apply?
The Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burros Act of 1971 specifies the following:
§ 1333(b)(1). Powers and duties of Secretary
(1) The Secretary shall maintain a current inventory of wild free-roaming horses and burros on given areas of the public lands. The purpose of such inventory shall be to: make determinations as to whether and where an overpopulation exists and whether action should be taken to remove excess animals; determine appropriate management levels of wild free-roaming horses and burros on these areas of the public lands; and determine whether appropriate management levels should be achieved by the removal or destruction of excess animals, or other options (such as sterilization, or natural controls on population levels).

3. Principal Purpose:
A. What is the principal purpose of this proposed project/program, what is the support or stimulation, i.e., how does the public benefit from this project?
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wild Horse and Burro Program protects, manages, and controls wild horses and burros under the authority of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 to ensure that healthy herds thrive on healthy rangelands. Development of effective population growth suppression methods for wild horses and burros is vital to effectively managing herd population growth rates as an alternative to gathering and removing animals from BLM lands. There are currently no contraceptive techniques that are highly effective, long lasting, easily and safely administered, delivered only once during the lifetime of the horse, practical, and affordable for use across all BLM Herd Management Areas (HMAs).
B. Identify the BLM Performance Measure(s) and number that apply to this project/program ( If a measure is not identified to accurately describe your project, please select the one that comes closest and expand on that.

Mission Area 1.0 – Resource Protection
GOAL 3 – Protect Cultural and Natural Heritage Resources.
Intermediate Outcome: Improve the condition of cultural and natural heritage resources.
1.3.15 – Wild Horse and Burro Management Areas: Cumulative number of herd management areas (HMAs) achieving appropriate management levels (Bureau measure).

4. Funding:
A. Estimate the total Federal funding amount to be provided to the recipient during the term of the agreement.
Since this is a Request for Information, no funding is associated with this announcement.
B. Is there a requirement for matching funds for this project/program? If yes, what amount?
C. If project is being done as a Single Source you will need to estimate the total commitment by the recipient(s) during the term of the agreement if known. Recipient commitments could be in the form of cash expenditures for supplies or services, the value of contributed services, etc. Also, estimate third party commitments
D. Estimate the number of awards to recipients/cooperators/partners for this project/program.

5. Involvement:
A. Describe the nature of the relationship between the recipient and BLM during performance of the agreement if known. Will the BLM be substantially involved? For example, will the BLM have management responsibility, issue directions to the recipient regarding the timing of work to be done, or otherwise exercise control over the project?
Wild horses and burros could be made available for future research. Studies could be conducted at select BLM holding facilities (boarding and feed costs would be covered by the holding facility), or at other locations approved by BLM.

To ensure consideration, responses must be received by December 1, 2013 and must be submitted electronically to
Responses to this RFI are voluntary and may be submitted anonymously; please do not include any personally identifiable or other information that you do not wish to make public. Proprietary, classified, confidential or sensitive information should not be included in your response.
A Request for Proposals based on the information provided through this RFI may be released in FY14 dependent on available funding.

B. Who will be the BLM program office point of contact (POC) before and after award?
Dean Bolstad
Senior Advisor, Division of Wild Horses and Burros
Room 2134 LM
20 M Street, S.E.
Washington, DC 20003
Telephone: 202-912-7297; email:
6. Single Source:
Is the proposed agreement directed to one entity only? Place an X in the appropriate block below.
If yes, which of the following criteria apply for justifying award without competition is applicable?
A. Unsolicited proposal – The proposed award is the result of an unsolicited assistance application which represents a unique or innovative idea, method or approach which is not the subject of current or planned contract or assistance award, but which is deemed advantageous to the program objective.
B. Continuation – The activity to be funded is necessary to the satisfactory completion of, or is a continuation of an activity presently being funded, and for which competition would have a significant adverse effect on the continuity or completion of the activity.
C. Legislative intent – The language in the applicable authorizing legislation or legislative history clearly indicates Congress’ intent to restrict award to a particular recipient or purpose.
D. Unique Qualifications – The applicant is uniquely qualified to performed the activity based upon a variety of demonstrable factors such as location, property ownership, voluntary support capacity, cost-sharing ability, if applicable, technical expertise, or other such unique qualifications;
E. Emergencies – Program/award where there is insufficient time available (due to a compelling and unusual urgency, or substantial danger to health or safety) for adequate competitive procedures to be followed.
7. If using Single Source provide the name(s) of potential eligible recipients.
8. Provide justification criteria for noncompetitive federal assistance.
9. Approval:
Program Officer Signature: Date: 09/16/2013 .
Program Officer Name: Dean Bolstad . Title: Senior Advisor
Supervisory Signature: Title: Wild Horse and Burro Division Chief
Based on the findings in the Statement of Programmatic Involvement, there is:
1. Legislative authority to enter into an assistance agreement;
2. There is a public purpose of support or stimulation;
3. BLM is transferring something of value;
4. BLM’s involvement is substantial; and
5. There is justification for a noncompetitive award because:
6. Determination and Certification:
Based upon the above findings, I have determined that a cooperative agreement is the appropriate instrument that most accurately reflects the nature of the proposed relationship between the Bureau of Land Management and a recipient.
I hereby certify that the above project/program will be announced as a RFA (synopsis and full announcement) in and will follow the procedures as required in the Department of the Interior Manual 505 DM 2, Grants Administration, Procurement Contracts, Grant Agreements and Cooperative Agreements and BLM Instruction Memorandum No. 2006-151, Assistance Agreements.
Requested/Approved By:
Grants Management Officer
Approved/Concurrence By:
Procurement Analyst/Chief of the Contracting Office
7. Washington Office (WO-850) Approval:
Approved By:
(If Required)
Procurement Analyst (WO-850)
8. Solicitor Review: If your project is complex in nature and you would like the Solicitor review, have them sign after the Washington Office Approval. Delete if no review sought.
Reviewed By:

24 replies »

  1. The methods that BLM keeps adding to their extinction procedures is frightening – and this one could be the worst ever. The way the solicitation is stated, all of our WH&B could potentially be permanently sterilized (section B clearly states permanent sterilization on the range) which would lead to only one ultimate result … ALL GONE.


  2. The use of tax payers money again! One way or another they will wipe out our wild horse herds using research, oil, gas, cattle and other prime lies. When will this stop!


    Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    “There Are No Secrets at Indian Lakes”

    On June 9, 2010, BLM closed the facility on Broken Arrow ranch in Fallon, Nevada, locking wild horses in and the public out.
    Since then, horses from the Calico Mountains, Tuscarora, Twin Lakes, Ely and other ranges have been corralled, castrated, and processed there. And they’ve died.

    Many of us have requested public viewing of the wild horses and most have been denied. BLM’s John Neill and Dean Bolstad have refused my requests because:


  4. Can the VERY LIVES OF OUR Horses afford for us to sit ROUND TALKING ABOUT IT ?????????? IS THERE NOTHING WE CAN DO !!!!! But watch this holocaust take place????????


  5. From pictures there seem to be only a few wild horses at Broken Arrow. Did the BLM experiment on them, and they have died?


  6. Again I was writing and got wiped off, don’t like what some one says get rid of it I guess is the answer. They watch us and follow us to see if we came up with some thing. I think it is terrible to keep using our money and round them up , then take them to sale and we buy them back, where does the money go and to who? Now they will be using our money to operate on the horses and if all are operated on then no more horses, we wiped them out. Where does the protecting the mustangs come in to the BLM’s management in to it , not enough water, no shelter and selling them to the meat man? on Round ups running them to death, killing the foals on the trip, miscarriages for the preg. mares. Keeping the public out of the mix, can’t come nd see the round ups. Every one of you are not the people who need to be in charge of these special animals, who have given their all for us for all these years.
    You are a challenge and I will be up to fighting with every being of my body.


  7. Before this becomes a wide-spread reality, this agency needs to show actual, visual proof of the existence of these unsustainable herd populations. NOW. Not some lame-ass estimate. Not some stupid Public declaration on BLM’s web site of the culmination of ‘field office reports’. Not some Bullsh*t data constructed out of thin air.

    They do aerial surveys. There’s is NO reason for them not to take video of that surveillance and share those images with the Public.

    Oh, WAIT. There is. Because it would be proof-positive that these animals don’t exist in the numbers BLM claims, and that this movement toward field sterilization is nothing more than a plan of complete eradication of two species the BLM has no love for.

    Every aspect of this Program is geared toward branding wild horses and burros a pestilence. If they’re not displacing wildlife, they’re gutting forage and drinking water they have no right to. There’s the expectation of an absolute Public belief that the small population of these animals relative to the millions of acres they occupy is responsible for range degradation on every level.

    This has to stop. Protection and management of wild, free-roaming equines is NOT the goal of this agency. Rendering them extinct is.


    • You are correct, Lisa. They have been asked to take these counts many times but have refused…for obvious reasons. Their motives are obvious. We have people that have joined the BLM that have motives that are not in line with the law or the American people and they must be stopped.


  8. I can tell you whats going on here. The powers that be in DC have told the BLM management that the they no longer want to spend the money to keep feeding the Mustangs in holding or constantly rounding up more horses. So they are going to stop the few animals left in the wild from reproducing. Eventually as the herds age and die from natural causes and weather related deaths the BLM will stop their roundups because the herds will be to small to bother with. I also suspect that they will continue to sneak them to slaughter from the so called ranches that board them. The slaughter plants in Canada or Mexico pay very little attention to brands so they will look the other way when truck loads of BLM branded horses turn up.
    But very careful you rant about here and on other blog sites, as we no longer live in a free country.


  9. Dear grandmagregg,
    I have been in this fight against horse slaughter for over ten years, there is nothing that the BLM or the pro-slaughter gangs can do or say that I can’t see through just as you and many others on this site. We can’t be fooled. The BLM is one of the most corrupt agencies in DC along with a long list of others that fall within this category. When I read the White Paper about what happened when the BLM was exposed for selling Mustangs to slaughter buyers in the nineties it looked like every person working there knew about it. This opened my eyes wide about this corruption, I don’t trust anyone connected to this agency.


  10. These horses are doomed. We email, post on social media, donate, some go and save what they can. In the end, the govt. does what it wants. I will still be a voice for them but I am having a hard time keeping a hopeful attitude.


    • There are more and more voices for the wild horses & burros each day, so stay strong. Continue to post on facebook
      share articles, tell people you meet what is happening, and send articles to newspapers and members of Congress.


  11. In the second paragraph I am going to say something direct, with deep meaning to me. I mean no disrespect to families and cultures destroyed in the European Holocaust, The Shoa, or any other genocide, such as the American Indian Genocide, the Armenian Genocide, and ALL the “ethnic cleansings” of our time. My family name, Pliskin, is on pages of the Yad VaShem database, names of those who died in the Holocaust of Europe, just a few years prior to my own lifetime.

    This experimentation on wild horse herds is Nazi-like in its enormity as well as its immorality, and its blind callousness to the suffering of OUR wild horses and burros.
    Much of the world stood by or was duped by Nazi propaganda and subterfuge, and the secrecy and literal closing off and hiding of the “camps” from public view, while they did their gruesome work. The question today is, if we do not want to stand by, what can we do?

    BECAUSE, Dean Bolstad, and the other real people of the BLM and other agencies involved, are going to keep doing their work. Every day. In fact, they may start hurrying up, since, as Debbie writes, more and more of us are “waking up” and finding our voices. Just like the Nazis hurried up as the Allies were closing in on them. They hurried up, but they kept on doing their work.

    If we believe we would not have stood by then, then we must ask what can we do now to not stand by. Remember, we live in America, a democracy, which gives us the right of direct action to redress the government. We are a republic, through which the power of government is supposed to be vested in the interests of every one of us, not in the “private” views and initiatives of those who govern. REMEMBER MOST OF ALL, what this comes down to is this: Those who would dare do this removal and soliciting, thiss experimentation and killing, do so in our name. They do it with our money and on our land. They solicit contracts for millions of dollars to pay for helicopters, farm leases, and anguished experimentation by veterinary doctors, all of whom care less about the suffering of these mares, foals, and stallions than we do. They aren’t making proposals and fulfilling contracts, and Dean Bolstad is not letting contracts for millions of dollars paid by you and me, so that these horses will have a better life, or because they listen to us and want to ally themselves with us and our sincere wishes good wishes for the horses.

    So if they are not going to ally with us, we must become ALLIES ourselves. Just like the Allies had to form to defeat the Nazis in Europe, so must we come together with our allies, now, before it is too late.

    We DO NOT need to ask the questions anymore that start with WHY.
    We need to start asking the questions that have to do with HOW.
    Keep asking them, and start answering them.
    And then only take YES for an answer.

    Not one wild mare should have to put up with the immoral abomination of spaying in the wild. And then, we need to go on to the next one. And the next, and the next.

    Our action does not have to be nor should it be threatening, illegal, violent, or destructive.

    It just has to be action. Before it is too late.


    • Yes Rob~~
      this is a direct quote off of another site-not my words but someone elses-but it says so much-
      “”Yes but look at all the self centered groups that organize demonstrations in Washington for misc small causes that no where compare to this? But do they demonstrate for this? NO? Why? because it doesn’t effect them. and they don’t care enough to do anything about it.
      Well, what if in the future some world court holds each and every one of us responsible. What would our defense be? That we had no representation even though we elected every last one of them? That we didn’t at least demonstrate, even though we had two legs to get there?””

      Yes, we need some action – before it is to late


  12. Apparently the recommendations of the NAS report fell on deaf ears. This is in opposition to what was recommended by the committee member from Univ. of Mo.


  13. Agree, Linda.

    If you had 100 acres of pasture land and did not know if you had only one or a hundred and one head of animals on your pasture how could you possibly make any valid or justifiable management decisions? You could not.

    The recently published 2013 National Academy of Sciences report states that: “Understanding the number and distribution of free-ranging horses and burros on their range is explicitly part of the mandate to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 … that act …states that BLM “shall maintain a current inventory of wild free-roaming horses and burros on given areas of the public lands” to, in part, “make determinations as to whether and where an overpopulation exists and whether action should be taken to remove excess animals.””

    The NAS committee should have just STOPPED at that point and made no further recommendations because no valid recommendations COULD be made without knowing what the population on the range actually is.

    So although the NAS report went into great detail about population counts it never once mentions that the BLM census tallies are not documented by photos or any other method and thus could be unreliable and even falsified for the sake of acquiring funding for the district with ultimate detrimental consequences for the wild horses and burros on their legal land.


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