Story by Iron County Todayfor
“It pains me to share articles and news story (below) that are riddled with multiple inaccuracy’s and misinformation from the federal government’s rogue mismanagement agency, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), but it is important for everyone, worldwide, to be aware of the all out war that the BLM is waging against our federally protected wild horses and burros. The current information pumped out by those who are in bed with special interest groups (BLM) states that wild horse populations are in excess by a number that we believe is higher than the actual sum total of all wild equines on our public lands. These are lies, nothing short of stone cold, idiot lies…and we as taxpayers begrudgingly give up our hard earned cash, in the way of taxes, to pay these civil employees with cushy salaries to LIE to us.
Sorry, but my “Stupid Meter” is pegged on ‘full’ and it is by far long overdue for the public to say enough is enough and call out the Administration, the Department of Interior and the BLM on how the federal government is intentionally managing our wild horses and burros into extinction and are currently working on a ‘final solution’ to ensure that our protected equines on our western public lands are forever whipped out and gone…like dust in the wind, their days are numbers…unless we take action, form the plan, work the plan and stop the carnage. Are you up to the challenge, my friends?” ~ R.T.
SOUTHERN UTAH – Controversy in Southern Utah, including here in Iron County, continues over the number of wild horses on public lands.
According to the Bureau of Land Management website, the BLM manages, protects, and controls wild horses and burros under the authority of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act (as amended by Congress in 1976, 1978, 1996, and 2004). This law authorizes the BLM to remove excess wild horses and burros from the range to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands.
To promote healthy conditions on the range, the BLM determines what it calls the Appropriate Management Level (AML), which is the number of wild horses and burros that can thrive in balance with other public land resources and uses. Wild horses and burros that exceed AML (currently 26,715) are to be removed from the range, in accordance with the 1971 law, as amended.
The current estimated on-range wild horse and burro population (as of March 1, 2016) is 67,027, a 15 percent increase over the 2015 estimate of 58,150. That means the current west-wide on-range population exceeds AML by more than 40,000. The BLM’s finding is that wild horse and burro herds double in size about every four years. Wild horses and burros have virtually no natural predators, thus the reason the herd continues to grow. The BLM states that the population of off-range (unadopted or unsold) wild horses and burros maintained in holding facilities is more than 45,000 as of May 2016.
The wild horses and burros compete with other wildlife and animals including deer, elk and cattle for the feed on these lands.
Typically for the cattle industry, BLM measures the amount of grass and feed on each range and determines and controls the number of cattle a rancher can keep grazing on the land permit. They are usually moved from summer to winter range to allow the feed to grow again.
Wild horses, on the other hand, are free to roam throughout the area, grazing virtually 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Ranchers are asking the government to apply the same regulations to the wild horses that pertain to cattle on the various ranches and open ranges.
The problem arises when there is not enough feed on certain ranges for the wild horses to survive. A video featuring Congressman Chris Stewart, (found at http://www.youtu.be/6L7vJmQBhIU) said it is a situation that needs to be addressed by both sides of the aisle, Democrats and Republicans.
“We can’t just continue with what is happening here,” Stewart said in the video. “An estimate given to congress just in the last few days says it will cost 1 billion dollars to care for these animals in the next few years.”
Stewart went on to say, “We can just throw our hands up in the air and say it is just too hard, we can’t fix it, but that just seems unacceptable.”
There have been some population growth-suppression treatments introduced, but in a June 2013 report, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) found that no highly effective, easily delivered, and affordable fertility-control methods were currently available to manage wild horse and burro population growth. The NAS also urged the BLM to use better research tools.
The currently available fertility control vaccine, known as porcine zona pellucida (PZP), is limited in the duration of its effectiveness – a one-year formulation (initially assumed to be 22 months) must be hand-injected into a captured wild horse.
A second formulation of PZP can be deployed via ground-darting, but is also effective for up to only one year. This dart-deployed formulation is not a viable fertility-control option for most wild horse herds because of the animals’ propensity to avoid human contact and the vast sizes of most herd ranges, which make it difficult to locate and track individual horses.