Horse News

Public Lands Cowboy-Livestock Mentality Dominates Wild Horse and Burro Captures and Removals and Many Eventual Sales to Slaughter Associates

LEDE: A white stallion, right, looks over his band of wild mustang mares on BLM land near Susanville, Tuesday, June 29, 2010. BLM plans for an early August roundup of 1,800 wild horses near Susanville that has legal groups, animal rights activists and enviromentalists in an uproar.

Photo of Braveheart and his Family by Leslie Sterling

Compiled by Grandma Gregg but Inspired by George Wuerthner, co-editor of “Welfare Ranching: The Subsidized Destruction of the American West”.

The continuing Wild Horse and Burro abuse by the Bureau of Land Management and the US Forest Service is a demonstration of the public lands “cowboy-livestock” mentality the industry uses to address any problem. Instead of using its brains, it resorts to brute force. But of course, slaughter is the ultimate goal for the cowboy-livestock mentality so brute force should not be a surprise. If left unchallenged, I believe and as we have seen, the industry’s harsh tactics pose a threat to all free roaming wildlife everywhere.

When you review the true facts, it is impossible to believe that minimizing the Wild Horses and Burros because of the range conditions is really the motivating force behind the BLM & USFS capture and removal (and now non-reproducing herds and massive sterilization) actions. Reasonable and legal options that could address their concerns about range health are ignored in favor of deadly force. This can only be explained if the range conditions are hiding another motive – destruction and thievery of our public lands and public resources by private/corporate, domestic livestock.

As made clear by the Wild Horse and Burro Act’s implementing regulations, the BLM “may close appropriate areas of the public lands to grazing use by all or a particular kind of livestock . . . if necessary to provide habitat for wild horses or burros, to implement herd management actions, or to protect wild horses or burros from disease, harassment or injury.” 43 C.F.R. § 4710.5(a). Removal or reduction of domestic livestock which provides financial gain for any private or corporate owned institution must be activated in favor of protecting the land and the wildlife and wild horses and wild burros and their habitat that belong to the American people. By law the BLM and USFS can and should close appropriate areas of public lands to grazing use by all domestic livestock, to provide habitat for wild horses or burros.  It is the law of the United States of America.

Many in the livestock industry in the west fear the 1971 WH&B Act and fear those few American people who do know about it and speak loudly about this unanimously passed Congressional law. Why? Following the 1971 law of wild free roaming wild horses and burros comes at the expense of the public lands private/corporate livestock industry wallets. The industry, realizing this threat, has historically and is currently attempting, with the help of their big dollars and political and governmental associates in destroying any and all wild horses and burros as fast as they can – and other wild animals, as well.

No attempt to determine and admit the real risks of range devastation are performed because this risk is without a doubt the public lands corporate/private domestic livestock and they are owned and controlled by the public lands cowboy-livestock mentality ranchers and their associates – who highly paid lobbyists in Washington, D.C. It’s all about the money – BIG money.

The agencies don’t admit this to the American public because they want to create a crisis situation to justify their extreme actions. It’s way past time to question the public lands cowboy-livestock mentality of brute force as a solution to any problem or conflict. The problem is there is no value put on wildness.








16 replies »

    • I posted it several times last week…Then someone Deleted after every post! I changed my password on facebook reposted and before I knew it the link was gone Again. They didnt want the truth exposed


  1. Yep….so true. Bottom line, how do we turn this thing around? The enemy is organized, they have $$, they pay lobbyists big bucks in Washington to do their bidding, they create lies about wild horses and it’s never challenged. They are winning this battle. The horses are doomed to living their lives in holding pens or disappearing to God knows where….What are we doing?? What can we do different or better to save the horses? What can we do to plug the loopholes in the Wild Horse and Burro Act? I feel a sense of urgency here…..but I don’t have the answers.


  2. I don’t have the answers either but I do agree with these two statements:

    “What can be done to address the problems associated with public lands livestock grazing? There is a simple answer: end it. Get the cows and sheep off, let the wild creatures reclaim their native habitat, and send the ranchers a bill for the cost of restoration”.
    “Do what you can do as well as you can do it – every day of your life …”
    -Howard Lyman


    • Grandmagregg, I totally agree! But it must be legal for, (big and small,) ranchers to get permits to graze their cows and sheep….does any independent agency oversee this? I’m trying desperately to understand. I read so many articles about the dwindling horse herds, the powerful cattle ranchers and destruction of the range because of cattle, yet nothing ever seems to get resolved and the horses are vanishing. But they’re supposed to be protected. They’re never ever to be shipped to slaughter. But they are. They end up in auctions where anyone can buy them. And what ever happened to the missing 1700 mustangs sold to that Davis guy?? It’s like…. whoever is responsible for the well being and protection of the wild horses doesn’t give a crap about them. No one ever seems to be held accountable and the Wild Horse and Burro Act is ignored. Is it ever enforced?? I’m trying to see the whole picture and it’s confusing!! HELP!


      • From what you just wrote, you are understanding it more than you think.

        As for the private/domestic livestock on our public lands, there is a lot to learn online but I would start here (free online book): “Welfare Ranching: The Subsidized Destruction of the American West”

        As for being sent to slaughter, yes our wild horses and burros ARE sent to KB auctions and BLM says it is OK and legal as long as they are titled (previously sold or adopted by BLM).

        Our wild ones also “disappear” from the range and our wild ones are shot on the range and very rarely does anyone get caught and even if they do they get only a hand-slap.

        Many many many people have been trying to stop the BLM for many years and trying to make them follow the law to PROTECT the WH&B … and as you said, “No one ever seems to be held accountable and the Wild Horse and Burro Act is ignored.” Why? Because if the truth was known the entire BLM would be behind bars and the BLM is protected by big business – livestock & extraction and trophy hunting etc.

        And may I add this (written by IBLA judge): It would be anomalous to infer that by authorizing the custodian of the wild free roaming horses and burros to “manage” them, Congress intended to permit the animals’ custodian to subvert the primary policy of the statute by capturing and removing from the wild the very animals that Congress sought to protect from being captured and removed from the wild.


      • thanks for this info Grandmagregg, I’ll read up on “pupliclandsranching” and try to understand this a bit more.


      • The answer you are looking for is MIPI (Multiple-purpose Income Public Indicator) which is a scale of average income thought to cover all needs of a household depending on family size and price indexes. MIPI is used in certain European countries to determine who has access (deserves) to and amount of student grants and other subsidies as well as to carry out statistical analysis (e.g. determine poverty thresholds).

        The idea is that grazing permits for a set number of heads are assigned depending of how the applicant’s income approaches the lower and upper limits of its MIPI range and that past a certain income level and pastured head ratio either no permit is issued or the price per head grows exponentially to be far more expensive than private pastureland or stabulation, so as to penalize the use of public resources by collectives that clearly do not indispensably depend on them for subsistence. The concept is that public resources/welfare should be reserved for vulnerable collectives only on a last resource-basis.

        This is the theory but this admittedly a hard-to-swallow concept for many.


  3. This isn’t about the small independent rancher…it’s about the BIG Corporate ranchers

    Public lands grazing subsidies, like most agricultural subsidies, disproportionately benefit large landholders. In a 1992 Government Accounting Office profile of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) permittees, the largest 500 permittees, out of nearly 20,000 total, controlled 36 percent of the public lands forage.

    Just 16 percent of all permittees controlled 76.2 percent of the AUMs (animal unit months-one AUM being the amount of forage required by a cow-calf pair for a month) available on BLM lands. Most of these permittees were big corporations or very wealthy individuals.

    The smallest 2,000 permittees controlled less than 0.13 percent of BLM forage.
    This inequality is a result of the process for assigning public lands allotments.

    Access to permits requires ownership of private base operations. Since wealthy ranchers own more land, and thus more base property, they wind up with more federal lands allotments.


  4. The law states that “the creation
    of a grazing district or the issuance of a [grazing] permit . . . shall not
    create any right, title, interest, or estate in or to the lands.” 43 U.S.C. §


    • I have heard about this speech before – but I read one of the links below it and according to the “Bureau of Indian Affairs” – it never was actually proven that this Chief was responsible for this! Considering the track record of that agency, I’d rather believe the speech!!!


  5. Cattoor’s advertise on United Horsemen page as Sponsors. UH is SOLEY SLAUGHTER. When the BLM claims its NOT associated with horse Slaughter isnt that a Legal issue? Hmm


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