Judge Rejects Utah Welfare Ranchers Bid to Evict Wild Horses

Source: The Salt Lake Tribune – Story by

“Public lands » Utah argues BLM is failing its duty to manage wild horses, while advocates decry ‘inhumane’ roundups…”

Last terrorized seconds of freedom for native wild horses being rounded up on public lands ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

A federal judge on Tuesday tossed a lawsuit brought by Utah ranchers demanding the Bureau of Land Management remove “excess” wild horses from several areas in the West Desert they say are overrun with free-roaming horses that displace their cattle.

Represented by Karen Budd-Falen, a Wyoming lawyer who sources say is undergoing final vetting to serve as the BLM’s next director, the ranchers argued that federal law requires the removal of horses that exceed population targets the agency has set for particular herd areas. But U.S. District Judge Jill Parrish ruled that roundups are not compulsory, unless certain conditions are met.

“Once BLM determines that an overpopulation in fact exists in a given area, the agency has wide discretion in how it addresses that overpopulation,” wrote the former Utah Supreme Court justice in her ruling. “BLM may address the identified overpopulation through removal or through other methods it deems more suitable.”

In recent years, the BLM has been working with contraceptives as a less costly, more humane alternative to the endless cycle of roundups on Western ranges that have resulted in 50,000 horses incarcerated for life in private pastures off the range.

Current federal law prohibits selling these animals for slaughter to nations where horse meat is commonly used for human consumption, although pending legislation in Congress could relax these restrictions.

The Utah ranchers, angry with BLM requests that they slash their cattle’s time on the public rangelands, formed the Western Rangeland Conservation Association in 2014, pooling their money to bring the lawsuit. The Utah Farm Bureau Federation, national Public Lands Council and Iron and Beaver counties all pledged financial support and filed amicus briefs, while the American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign intervened on the BLM’s side.

The ranchers’ suit sought to compel removals from particular management areas where horse numbers exceed designated “appropriate management levels,” or AMLs, which set high and low target populations. In Utah and many other Western states, horse numbers chronically remain two to three times the upper limits of AML, creating endless conflict with the ranchers who hold grazing allotments in those areas and their allies on rural county commissions…(CONTINUED)

http://www.sltrib.com/home/5501502-155/judge-rejects-utah-ranchers-plea-to

7 comments on “Judge Rejects Utah Welfare Ranchers Bid to Evict Wild Horses

    • “Once BLM determines that an overpopulation in fact exists in a given area, the agency has wide discretion in how it addresses that overpopulation,” wrote the former Utah Supreme Court justice in her ruling. “BLM may address the identified overpopulation through removal or through other methods it deems more suitable.”

      Yes. We can certainly see the kind of pressure the government agencies are under from ranching and other special interests! And the sneaky Congressmen trying to do their bidding and push this kind of legislation through.

      I posted a link to this in the next thread, but I should have known there’d already be a post on it!

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  1. This is apparently how Utah’s BLM learned to do basic math and it is obviously fraud and corruption by BLM and it’s the cause of many captures, injuries and deaths of our wild horses and burros in Utah and across the west. Here are just a few of BLM’s published annual wild horse increases for Utah which are biologically impossible.

    BIBLE SPRINGS HMA 235% increase in ONE year which would require the herd or 72 wild horses to produce 169 successful and surviving foals during that ONE year.

    CHLORIDE CANYON HMA 161% increase in ONE year which would require the herd of 36 wild horses to produce 58 successful surviving foals during that ONE year.

    CHOKE CHERRY HMA 256% increase in ONE year which would require the herd of 43 wild horses to produce 110 successful surviving foals during that ONE year.

    CONGAR HMA 141% increase in ONE year which would require the herd of 101 wild horses to produce 142 successful surviving foals during that ONE year.

    MT ELINOR HMA 164% increase in ONE year which would require the herd of 25 wild horses to produce 41 successful surviving foals during that ONE year.

    NORTH HILLS HMA 225% increase in ONE year which would require the herd of 36 wild horses to produce 81 successful surviving foals during that ONE year.

    Fort Collins Science Center (who work with BLM) states, “Almost every management issue concerning wild horses and burros depends on accurate population estimates. Reliable, science-based estimates are needed for maintaining everything from herd health to habitat carrying capacity to genetic diversity… Given the demand for reliable information on which to base management decisions, wild horse and burro managers need standardized, tested, defensible, cost-effective, yet easy-to-use aerial population estimation techniques for wild horse and burro herds in a range of habitats and across a range of population sizes and densities. The accuracy and precision of current wild horse survey methods have NOT been rigorously tested.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Perhaps it’s the ranchers who should get their cattle off of PUBLIC BLM LANDS!!!!! I would rather my taxes support the wild horses than the cattlemen’s pockets!!!!

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    • “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.”
      – wwwpubliclandsranching.org/book.htm

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