Wild-Horse Overpopulation Is a Lie

Letter to the Editor of Mesquite Local News

BLM’s Big Lie: The “overpopulation” of wild horses is a concocted “crisis”. The government doesn’t have a wild-horse problem — wild horses have a government problem.


photo by Carol Walker of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Arbitrary management level (AML):  The maximum number of wild horses that BLM declares the Western range can sustain — 26,715 — is a political construct.  Per 49,349 square miles of wild-horse habitat, the upper bound of the AML establishes a maximum stocking density of 1 wild horse per 2 square miles!  However, BLM manages down to the low bound of the AML — 16,310.  That creates a stocking density of 1 wild horse per 3 square miles!

Sparsely populated, widely dispersed:  Many herds are restricted even more severely.  Here are stocking densities to which BLM restricts herds in Nevada.

1 wild horse per  3,102  acres  — 5    square miles  —  Antelope Complex

1 wild horse per  3,566  acres  — 5½ square miles  —  Triple B Complex

1 wild horse per  6,606  acres  — 10  square miles  —  Eagle herd

1 wild horse per  9,591  acres  — 15  square miles  —  Silver King herd

Contrast with livestock density:  BLM allows 1 cow-with-calf pair (or 5 sheep) per 76 acres, which means 8 cow-calf pairs (or 40 sheep) per square mile.  Further, within dedicated wild-horse habitats, livestock are awarded most of the grazing slots (AUMs).  Examples from Nevada:

94% of AUMs to livestock — Triple B Complex

96% of AUMs to livestock — Antelope Complex

Normative annual herd-growth = at most, 5%:  Gregg, LeBlanc, and Johnston (2014) found the average birth rate among wild-horse herds to be about 20%; but 50% of foals perish.  The population-gain from surviving foals (10%) minus a conservative estimate of adult-mortality (5%) equals a normative herd-growth rate of 5%.

Fraudulent figures on the range:  BLM’s herd-growth figures are falsified.  Repeatedly, we find BLM reporting one-year increases that are beyond what is biologically possible.  Some examples from Nevada:

260%  —     52 times the norm — Shawave Mountains

293%  —     59 times the norm — Diamond Hills South

418%  —     84 times the norm — Black Rock Range East *

*  BLM claimed the Black Rock Range East’s population grew from 88 horses to 456 horses in one year, an increase of 368.  If so, to overcome foal-mortality (50%) and adult-mortality (at least 5%), that would mean each filly and mare gave birth to 17 foals.

Fraudulent figures off the range:  A comprehensive report was recently issued following a 5-year investigation by Wild Horse Freedom Federation.  It revealed that BLM has been publishing fictitious figures regarding the number of wild horses removed from the range and now supposedly boarded in private pastures.  BLM is paying, but where are the horses?  http://wildhorsefreedomfederation.org/white-paper/

No to birth control, no to euthanasia, no to slaughter:  The population-explosion exists only on BLM’s falsified spreadsheets.

Marybeth  Devlin

9 comments

  1. Well who can you trust ? The BLM (what a joke) they are the biggest problem along with the Government supporters of the cruel ,corrupt and unethical who call themselves the BLM ..what a waste of our hard earned $$$. They waste more $$$ on there unjustified, inhumane helecoptor roundups , and cruel treatment of these wild horse’s than we can imagine. The people deserve the right to witness and protest against them and there insane roundups and tell the truth of what happens to these innocent horse’s. Overpopulation my eye, they are crazier than i thought.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This is directly from the National Academy of Sciences’ 2013 report:
    “How Appropriate Management Levels are established, monitored, and adjusted is not transparent to stakeholders, supported by scientific information, or amenable to adaptation with new information and environmental and social change.” Simply put, how can anyone prove that wild horses are overpopulated if AMLs are scientifically indefensible?

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Question: Since when does 175 minus 80 = 635?
    Answer: When BLM does the math.

    BLM’s Estimated Pre-Gather Population 175
    BLM states Number of Animals Removed 80
    BLM’s Estimated Post Gather Population 635

    BLM’s methods are to lie until they get what they want, by which point it will be too late for our wild horses and burros and what once were OUR public lands.

    This is only ONE of many examples of BLM’s corrupt mathematics.

    Reference- Completed FY 10 Gathers (per BLM) proving BLM lies:
    Black Mt Wild Burro Herd Management Area Arizona
    https://www.blm.gov/sites/blm.gov/files/wildhorse_quickfacts_doc9.pdf

    Liked by 2 people

  4. “Conclusion: The management of wild horses and burros would substantially benefit from improved accuracy in estimating population sizes and trends. This should be a priority for the BLM and its collaborators, given the importance of accurate population estimates to all aspects of wild horse and burro management.” (NAS 1991) BLM is engaged in management actions that are not based on a credible, accurate count of wild horses and burros.

    Liked by 3 people

    • This fall the entire House of Representatives are up for election or re-election. Every voter in every state should be asking politicians to make their opinions clear on the fate of America’s last wild horses and burros. Every one of us can make sure those running get information in hand, then follow up pressing them to put their positions into their campaign platforms. At least they cannot profess ignorance if they get elected and do nothing, or worse.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I wish these reports and stats would be sent to all representatives and Senators websites so they KNOW MORE TRUTHS for the upcoming vote on wild horse issues
    Thank you for reporting this, hope it helps those who read it and vote

    Liked by 1 person

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