Horse News

Alberta Government lies about overpopulation of Alberta “wildies”

Source:  Zoocheck

doc-cover-232x300@2x   Read the report HERE.

New Expert Wild Horse Report

Wild horse cull lacks supporting scientific evidence: decision from Minister on 2016 cull imminent

January 25, 2016

A 1 ½ year investigation and review of the Alberta government’s assertions that wild horses are overpopulating the landscape and causing ecological damage has found no scientific evidence supporting those claims.

Zoocheck reviewed all publicly available materials, as well as substantial quantities of additional documentation, including letters, notes, reports and other materials, obtained through a multitude of provincial Freedom of Information requests. As well, site visits to observe free-roaming horses and their habitats were also made and a technical review of the Alberta free-roaming (“feral”) horse management program prepared by expert consultant biologist Wayne McCrory.

The expert report and other materials were forwarded to Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips in December to inform her 2016 capture permit decision-making process. View the report here. It is expected that the Minister’s decision is imminent.

“The report reveals that there is no science supporting the capture for ecological reasons of additional wild horses in Alberta. Furthermore, government officials are unable to point to any evidence of rangeland damage attributable to wild horses,” said Julie Woodyer, Campaign Director for Zoocheck.

Alberta Government representatives say they want to ensure that some wild horses remain on the landscape, but captures have continued in the absence of scientific justification for removals and with no regard as to how many horses are necessary to ensure the genetic integrity of the free-roaming horse populations. According to the Alberta Government there are now less than 800 free-roaming horses in all of Alberta and they are fragmented into sub-populations, numbers that experts say are far too low.

“Wild horse populations in other parts of Canada are protected, but Alberta’s wild horses are being managed toward extinction. They have already been nearly extirpated in the Brazeau Equine Zone due to government sanctioned captures,” Woodyer added. “We hope the Minister will move this issue away from making a purely political decision to satisfy the small subset of ranchers who don’t want the horses, to what the information and science actually shows.”

17 replies »

  1. Alberta elected a new provincial government on May 5, 2015. The previous provincial government that was in power for the last 44 years was very corrupt for around 30 years. They did nothing to help save the wildies. Hopefully, the new government will do something to help the wildies.


  2. I read the report by Wayne McCrory, which just confirms what many of us already knew. The Government has no scientific data or independent studies that prove the wild horses are causing damage to the rangelands. As with the W5 show, it didn’t tell me anything that I (we) didn’t already know.

    Letter writing, telephone conversations and petitions, all have their place in advocacy. They are records of the general public telling the Government, we disagree with their chosen management plan. Now that there is hard proof the Government is not following the rules in place it is mandated to follow, they have to be held accountable. Failing to hold the Government accountable, just allows them to continue down their chosen path.

    Zoocheck, you do not have to wait for a cull to be issued before you can commence legal action!


    • V Fisher – Certainly sounds like the double speak here in the US. I did send a comment to Zoocheck – for what its worth. I’m sure since I live in the US – it may be thrown in the round bin – but thats really not a good enough reason not to comment! It sure is frustrating on both sides of the border.


      • I got a reply from Julie @ Zoocheck – “We do not feel that there is any chance of success of a challenge under that act. If you do, I would urge you to bring forward a legal action”. I really doubt that an individual would have much of a chance when an organization refuses to do anything!


      • Maggie Frazier – Thanks for posting this! The more I hear, the more I’m convinced, they have absolutely no grasp of the situation. I also thought it was a pretty snotty reply, especially from a professional organization that depends on donations from the Public. Please PM at Thanks!


  3. How much impact would the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) have on Canada’s Wildlife? Canada is one of the countries that is include in this trade agreement.. It does appear that there has been a push to get Wild Horses off the land on both sides of the border…..while ignoring all Public opposition.
    This agreement,, that has NOT included the Public, would place 544 MILLION ACRES of U.S. Public Lands under International Law…which appears to essentially be Corporate law.
    According to one news article, this agreement is due to be signed on February 16.

    The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), An Oppressive
    US-Led Free Trade Agreement, A Corporate Power-Tool of the 1%
    The Terrible Truth about The Trans Pacific Partners Agreement would surrender
    control of 544 million acres of public land – a quarter of the entire U.S. land area to international authorities
    Trans-Pacific Partnership to be signed in February 2016 in New Zealand


  4. Sure sounds familiar…in the U.S. Wild Horse & Burro roundups/removals have been allowed, to proceed BEFORE having even been reviewed by the courts…by then, many of them have disappeared


  5. It was corporations that spent at least seven years as far as I can find out working out what went into the TPP if this thing is signed into law it would open up public lands to total destruction there wouldn’t be any strip of land that wouldn’t be drilled, dug up or destroyed if anyone complained or tried to stop it some international tribunal would come into play either take you to court or file a complaint. None of the trade deals since Clinton was in office have done one thing to help the US worker and neither will this one every trade deal has peddled the idea that anyone that loses their job because of the trade deal can be retrained for a newer better paying job which never turned up.
    I contacted all three of my politicians in my state told them what I thought about this crooked mess but all I got back was emails giving me glowing accounts of how good this will make trade for this state.


  6. It’s very easy now to see which of our Congressmen and Congresswomen are signing onto the TPP and THOSE are the ones to oust…IMMEDIATELY. Then, what’s left of them will have to prove themselves to the American Public. This needs to be the year of Clean-Up and Clean-Out and Public Lands should be brought forth in the debates. I have to think that somewhere along the way, our Wild Horses…and Burros on this side of the border…have been looked upon as nothing more than an “impediment” to those corporate powers that are eagerly eyeing untapped resources, not the least of which is WATER


  7. Do you remember when we saw the article about Canada’s Horses being sent to slaughter in foreign countries while still ALIVE?
    I see a Powerful Coalition forming on both sides of the border AND also the Brumbies have to be included and protected
    Horses and Burros are loved by people all over the world
    We have the Power..all we have to do is USE it

    Petitioning Richard Broekman and 2 others
    Ask Atlas Air to End the Shipment of Live Horses for Slaughter
    by Canadian Horse Defence Coalition

    This Just In! – Atlas Air to pay more than $1 billion in reparations for price-fixing!

    Canadian Horse Defence Coalition

    Jan 9, 2016 – “Atlas Air Worldwide Inc. on Thursday said it had agreed to settle price-fixing allegations, the latest chapter in a decade long legal battle that has forced air cargo carriers to pay more than $1 billion in reparations to disgruntled clients.

    Purchase, N.Y.based Atlas will take a $100 million charge against fiscal fourth quarter earnings, though will make three installment payments by 2018 to settle the charges brought by dozens of air cargo customers ranging from General Electric Co. to the parent of Crate & Barrel.

    The proposed settlement requires court approval and would be the second-largest after the $115 million paid by Korean Air Lines Co. following coordinated action by regulators in Europe, the U.S. and Asia into alleged collusion by air cargo carriers to inflate surcharges. The probes triggered multiple lawsuits from customers.”

    Atlas Air Agrees to Settle Antitrust Suit


    • This comes as no surprise. It is nothing new. The comment section to newspapers (Disqus) has been discontinued. When it existed in newspapers,like the Calgary Sun, there were some very nasty comments on there in relation to this issue of culling the wildies. Celebrities, like Calgary area singer/songwriter, Jann Arden were against culling the wildies. This was mentioned in the Calgary Sun, two years ago. The comments on Disqus were very nasty and offensive towards her. They weren’t even on topic, except for one. Sad.


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