Wild Burros

THE TRUTH #17 – Would BLM’s plans for an adoption “ASSISTANCE” program and adoption assistance “INCENTIVE” program make older wild horses & burros more susceptible to sale for slaughter?

Source:  Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Wild Horse Freedom Federation issues THE TRUTH to share Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) documents and information with the public.  Be sure to subscribe HERE to Wild Horse Freedom Federation, so that you can receive email alerts.

THE TRUTH #17 – Would BLM’s plans for an adoption “ASSISTANCE” program and adoption assistance “INCENTIVE” program make older wild horses & burros more susceptible to sale for slaughter?

After Wild Horse Freedom Federation filed one Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, documents were finally provided, but were heavily redacted.  The reason given for redactions were, in part, to “avoid public confusion that might be caused by disclosing recommendations…”

Of concern, the BLM noted, under “Position of interested parties” that “Some wild horse and burro advocate organizations may oppose the program due to fears that the older aged animals would be more susceptible to sale for slaughter.”

Since the BLM brought up the issue that older animals “would be more susceptible to sale for slaughter,” then they must be aware that this is a distinct possibility.  And we are left to wonder about the “assistance” and “incentives” offered in these records.

Wild Horse Freedom Federation is at the forefront of efforts to provide BLM documents, obtained by Freedom of Information Act, to the American people.  We are currently involved in many Freedom of Information Act lawsuits, and with the help of our FOIA attorneys, Pete Sorenson and Dan Stotter, we will continue the fight for government transparency.

The documents below show what the BLM was willing to share regarding these adoption assistance and adoption assistance incentive programs:

See the documents HERE.

18 replies »

  1. January 23, 2018. Dean Bolstad, Wild Horse and Burro Division Chief

    “Placing wild horses and burros into private care is a vital component of the WH&B program. An increase in adoptions would reduce corral holding costs. Cost savings would be diverted to other aspects of managing our wild horses and burros such as fertility control and or increased removals.”

    1. Even by the numbers in this document, the number of adoptions has NEVER been more than a tiny fraction of the overall numbers being managed, and cannot be considered “vital” by any contortions of logic.

    2. Increasing adoptions would remove a few horses from corrals, yes, but since even a single roundup can often account for ALL a given year’s adoptions, this is disingenuous at best.

    3. The combined costs of roundups, removals, processing, warehousing, adoption and shipping to long term holding are indefensible when by law “minimal feasible” management methods are mandated. Even if every horse and burro rounded up and removed went straight to adoption this still fails both the letter and intent of federal law.

    4. “Cost savings” would be diverted… to fund the much less costly fertility control protocols already proven, and INCREASED REMOVALS?!? How is this circular logic cost effective or even ethical? Keeping expensive corral management at full capacity is the furthest from meeting the requirements of the law.

    5. If BLM is truly interested in increasing adoptions and saving taxpayers money, why then are they rapidly defunding the successful TIP and other citizen-involvment adoption, selective removals and selective contraceptive darting efforts? Why also are they completely ignoring and/or burying innovative citizen strategies which could provide better and cost-effective management ON THE RANGE that ensures our wild horses and burros remain wild animals in the homelands the law intended– and at far less cost???

    6. I am dismayed at the current date of this information, I expected it to be much older, perhaps even by decades.

    7. BLM folks reading this, please look in the mirror and repeat: “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing, over and over, expecting a different result.” We can and must do better, for ourselves and our wild horses and burros.


  2. The Public did NOT give permission to remove any of these Federally Protected Wild Horses or Burros from their Legal Herd Management Areas.
    This is THEFT of Public Property
    To even tamper with a mailbox has serious consequences.

    Taking Items Out of a Mailbox

    It’s a federal crime to steal someone’s mailbox, to steal mail from a mailbox, or to snatch mail items that are in the process of delivery. It’s a separate offense to take a letter in order to pry into the affairs of another person, even if you only look at the return address momentarily. Whether you’re charged with mail theft or obstruction of correspondence, you’re potentially looking at fines of up to $250,000 and five years’ incarceration. https://legalbeagle.com/6329596-mail-tampering-according-federal-law.html


    • Louie, the law has been amended to allow removals, and these amendments were passed by elected congresspersons, so essentially the public did give permission, but the exact conditions and abuses of this law remain an open question:


      Bold face type indicates revisions to the Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act (Public Law 92-195). Sections 2. and 3. were modified by the Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978; Section 9. was modified by the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976.
      The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971
      (Public Law 92-195)

      To require the protection, management, and control of wild free- roaming horses and burros on public lands. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That Congress finds and declares that wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people; and that these horses and burros are fast disappearing from the American scene. It is the policy of Congress that wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death; and to accomplish this they are to be considered in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.

      Sec. 2. As used in this Act-

      “Secretary” means the Secretary of the Interior when used in connection with public lands administered by him through the Bureau of Land Management and the Secretary of Agriculture in connection with public lands administered by him through the Forest Service;

      “wild free-roaming horses and burros” means all unbranded and unclaimed horses and burros on public lands of the United States;

      “range” means the amount of land necessary to sustain an existing herd or herds of wild free-roaming horses and burros, which does not exceed their known territorial limits, and which is devoted principally but not necessarily exclusively to their welfare in keeping with the multiple-use management concept for the public lands;

      “herd” means one or more stallions and his mares; and

      “public lands” means any lands administered by the Secretary of the Interior through the Bureau of Land Management or by the Secretary of Agriculture through the Forest Service.

      “excess animals” means wild free-roaming horses or burros (1) which have been removed from an area by the Secretary pursuant to application law or, (2) which must be removed from an area in order to preserve and maintain a thriving natural ecological balance and multiple-use relationship in that area.

      Sec. 3.

      All wild free-roaming horses and burros are hereby declared to be under the jurisdiction of the Secretary for the purpose of management and protection in accordance with the provisions of this Act. The Secretary is authorized and directed to protect and manage wild free-roaming horses and burros as components of the public lands, and he may designate and maintain specific ranges on public lands as sanctuaries for their protection and preservation, where the Secretary after consultation with the wildlife agency of the State wherein any such range is proposed and with the Advisory Board established in section 7 of this Act deems such action desirable. The Secretary shall manage wild free-roaming horses and burros in a manner that is designed to achieve and maintain a thriving natural ecological balance on the public lands. He shall consider the recommendations of qualified scientists in the field of biology and ecology, some of whom shall be independent of both Federal and State agencies and may include members of the Advisory Board established in section 7 of this Act. All management activities shall be at the minimal feasible level and shall be carried out in consultation with the wildlife agency of the State wherein such lands are located in order to protect the natural ecological balance of all wildlife species which inhabit such lands, particularly endangered wildlife species. Any adjustments in forage allocations on any such lands shall take into consideration the needs of other wildlife species which inhabit such lands.

      The Secretary shall maintain a current inventory of wild free-roaming horses and burros on given areas of the public lands. The purpose of such inventory shall be to: make determinations as to whether and where an overpopulation exists and whether action should be taken to remove excess animals; determine appropriate management levels of wild free-roaming horses and burros on these areas of the public lands; and determine whether appropriate management levels should be achieved by the removal or destruction of excess animals, or other options (such as sterilization, or natural controls on population levels). In making such determinations the Secretary shall consult with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, wildlife agencies of the State or States wherein wild free-roaming horses and burros are located, such individuals independent of Federal and State government as have been recommended by the National Academy of Sciences, and such other individuals whom he determines have scientific expertise and special knowledge of wild horse and burro protection, wild-life management and animal husbandry as related to rangeland management.

      Where the Secretary determines on the basis of (i) the current inventory of lands within his jurisdiction; (ii) information contained in any land use planning completed pursuant to section 202 of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976; (iii) information contained in court ordered environmental impact statements as defined in section 2 of the Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978; and (iv) such additional information as becomes available to him from time to time, including that information developed in the research study mandated by this section, or in the absence of the information contained in (i-iv) above on the basis of all information currently available to him, that an overpopulation exists on a given area of the public lands and that action is necessary to remove excess animals, he shall immediately remove excess animals from the range so as to achieve appropriate management levels. Such action shall be taken, in the following order and priority, until all excess animals have been removed so as to restore a thriving natural ecological balance to the range, and protect the range from the deterioration associated with overpopulation:

      The Secretary shall order old, sick, or lame animals to be destroyed in the most humane manner possible;

      The Secretary shall cause such number of additional excess wild free-roaming horses and burros to be humanely captured and removed for private maintenance and care for which he determines an adoption demand exists by qualified individuals, and for which he determines he can assure humane treatment and care (including proper transportation, feeding, and handling): Provided, That, not more than four animals may be adopted per year by any individual unless the Secretary determines in writing that such individual is capable of humanely caring for more than four animals, including the transportation of such animals by the adopting party; and [PRIA 10/25/1978]

      The Secretary shall cause additional excess wild free roaming horses and burros for which an adoption demand by qualified individuals does not exist to be destroyed in the most humane and cost efficient manner possible.

      For the purpose of furthering knowledge of wild horse and burro population dynamics and their interrelationship with wildlife, forage and water resources, and assisting him in making his determination as to what constitutes excess animals, the Secretary shall contract for a research study of such animals with such individuals independent of Federal and State government as may be recommended by the National Academy of Sciences for having scientific expertise and special knowledge of wild horse and burro protection, wildlife management and animal husbandry as related to rangeland management. The terms and outline of such research study shall be determined by a redesign panel to be appointed by the President of the National Academy of Sciences. Such study shall be completed and submitted by the Secretary to the Senate and House of Representatives on or before January 1, 1983.

      Where excess animals have been transferred to a qualified individual for adoption and private maintenance pursuant to this Act and the Secretary determines that such individual has provided humane conditions, treatment and care for such animal or animals for a period of one year, the Secretary is authorized upon application by the transferee to grant title to not more than four animals to the transferee at the end of the one-year period.

      Wild free-roaming horses and burros or their remains shall lose their status as wild free-roaming horses or burros and shall no longer be considered as falling within the purview of this Act- (1) upon passage of title pursuant to subsection (c) except for the limitation of subsection (c)(1) of this section, or (2) if they have been transferred for private maintenance or adoption pursuant to this Act and die of natural causes before passage of title; or (3) upon destruction by the Secretary or his designee pursuant to subsection (b) of this section; or (4) if they die of natural causes on the public lands or on private lands where maintained thereon pursuant to section 4 and disposal is authorized by the Secretary or his designee; or (5) upon destruction or death for purposes of or incident to the program authorized in section 3 of this Act; Provided, That no wild free-roaming horse or burro or its remains may be sold or transferred for consideration for processing into commercial products.

      Sec. 4. If wild free-roaming horses or burros stray from public lands onto privately owned land, the owners of such land may inform the nearest Federal marshall or agent of the Secretary, who shall arrange to have the animals removed. In no event shall such wild free-roaming horses and burros be destroyed except by the agents of the Secretary. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit a private landowner from maintaining wild free-roaming horses or burros on his private lands, or lands leased from the Government, if he does so in a manner that protects them from harassment, and if the animals were not willfully removed or enticed from the public lands. Any individuals who maintain such wild free-roaming horses and burros on their private lands or lands leased from the Government shall notify the appropriate agent of the Secretary and supply him with a reasonable approximation of the number of animals so maintained.

      Sec. 5. A person claiming ownership of a horse or burro on the public lands shall be entitled to recover it only if recovery is permissible under the branding and estray laws of the State in which the animal is found.

      Sec. 6. The Secretary is authorized to enter into cooperative agreements with other landowners and with the State and local governmental agencies and may issue such regulations as he deems necessary for the furtherance of the purposes of this Act.

      Sec. 7. The Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture are authorized and directed to appoint a joint advisory board of not more than nine members to advise them on any matter relating to wild free-roaming horses and burros and their management and protection. They shall select as advisers persons who are not employees of the Federal or State Governments and whom they deem to have special knowledge about protection of horses and burros, management of wildlife, animal husbandry, or natural resources management. Members of this board shall not receive reimbursement except for travel and other expenditures necessary in connection with their services.

      Sec. 8.

      Any person who-

      willfully removes or attempts to remove a wild free- roaming horse or burro from the public lands, without authority from the Secretary, or

      converts a wild free-roaming horse or burro to private use, without authority from the Secretary, or

      maliciously causes the death or harassment of any wild free-roaming horse or burro, or

      processes or permits to be processed into commercial products the remains of a wild free-roaming horse or burro, or

      sells, directly or indirectly, a wild free-roaming horse or burro maintained on private or leased land pursuant to section 4 of this Act, or the remains thereof, or

      willfully violates a regulation issued pursuant to this Act, shall be subject to a fine of not more than $2,000, or imprisonment for not more than one year, or both. Any person so charged with such violation by the Secretary may be tried and sentenced by any United States commissioner or magistrate designated for that purpose by the court by which he was appointed, in the same manner and subject to the same conditions as provided for in section 3401, title 18, United States Code.

      Any employee designated by the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture shall have power, without warrant, to arrest any person committing in the presence of such employee a violation of this Act or any regulation made pursuant thereto, and to take such person immediately for examination or trail before an officer or court of competent jurisdiction, and shall have power to execute any warrant or other process issued by an officer or court of competent jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of this Act or regulations made pursuant thereto. Any judge of a court established under the laws of the United States, or any United States magistrate may, within his respective jurisdiction, upon proper oath or affirmation showing probable cause, issue warrants in all such cases.

      Sec. 9. In administering this Act, the Secretary may use or contract for the use of helicopters or, for the purpose of transporting captured animals, motor vehicles. Such use shall be undertaken only after a public hearing and under the direct supervision of the Secretary or of a duly authorized official or employee of the Department. The provisions of subsection (a) of the Act of September 8, 1959 (73 Stat. 470; 18 U.S.C. 47(a)) shall not be applicable to such use. Such use shall be in accordance with humane procedures prescribed by the Secretary.

      Sec. 10. Nothing in this Act shall be construed to authorize the Secretary to relocate wild free-roaming horses or burros to areas of the public lands where they do not presently exist.

      Sec. 11. After the expiration of thirty calendar months following the date of enactment of this Act, and every twenty-four calendar months thereafter, the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture will submit to Congress a joint report on the administration of this Act, including a summary of enforcement and/or other actions taken thereunder, costs, and such recommendations for legislative or other actions he might deem appropriate.

      The Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture shall consult with respect to the implementation and enforcement of this Act and to the maximum feasible extent coordinate the activities of their respective departments and in the implementation and enforcement of this Act. The Secretaries are authorized and directed to undertake those studies of the habits of wild free-roaming horses and burros that they may deem necessary in order to carry out the provisions of this Act.


      • The PUBLIC
        “Burro Program existed and public opinion was a primary indicator of management success (NRC, 1982). The same holds true today”.

        National Academy of Science
        “Using Science to Improve the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program: A Way Forward”

        Horse and burro management and control strategies cannot be based on biological or cost considerations alone; management should engage interested and affected parties and also be responsive to public attitudes and preferences.
        Three decades ago, the National Research Council reported that public opinion was the major reason that the Wild Horse and Burro Program existed and PUBLIC OPINION WAS A PRIMARY INCICATOR OF MANAGEMENT.
        (NRC, 1982). The same holds true today.

        Click to access wild-horses-report-brief-final.pdf

        Liked by 1 person

      • Louie, the NAS report is just that, a report/recommendation. It has no teeth and as we’ve seen, has been selectively interpreted and ignored by the BLM.

        I posted the actual law, which of course resulted from a groundswell of public opinion, but the law is what the BLM operates under, not public opinion. If we want wild horse and burro management to change in our times, we need to enforce the existing laws and modify them by act of Congress. Some of the pending lethal legislation is in fact taking those exact steps.


      • IcySpots, much of that is policy..not law.
        Policy must adhere to and be in compliance with LAW.
        As we have all witnessed, the agency does not even follow its own policy.
        Wild Horse and Burro population claims are far from accurate, as clearly shown in Wild Horse Freedom Federation White Paper.

        A National Injustice: The Federal Government’s Systematic Removal and Eradication of an American Icon
        Bruce Wagman[*] & Lisa McCurdy[**]

        The government can only remove the horses if current reliable data shows that horse populations are “excess.”[13] Even then the BLM is required to use the least invasive maintenance techniques possible.[14]

        Under the Act, the BLM must keep the wild herds at what it decides are “appropriate management levels” (AMLs). In determining these levels, the BLM must “consider[] [wild horses] in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.”[15] The controversy over America’s wild horses is a result of the diametrically opposed opinions about BLM’s statutory duties and priorities with respect to the wild horses. At its heart, the battle involves a choice over which interests are ascendant-those of the horses or of the other uses.

        Only under limited circumstances can the BLM actually remove horses from their designated herd area. While certain requirements are unclear and highly disputed, the agency must follow a multistep process to address wild horse populations. First, the BLM must obtain reliable information about the herd, environment and range conditions. From that evaluation they establish the AML, the appropriate number of horses for the land at issue.[18] The AML is used to determine if “an overpopulation exists



      • Louie, I posted the law in response to the claim the public did not give “permission” for BLM/USFS to remove wild horses and burros from the range. Through the words of the law, they were in fact given that authority. While like many I disapprove of their methods and “magic numbers” mathematics, the law very clearly puts removal authority in their wheelhouse. Public permission is not required, and where there is any doubt the public input is taken mostly as a matter of form, not substance.
        From what you yourself posted:

        ” Under the Act, the BLM must keep the wild herds at what it decides are “appropriate management levels” (AMLs). “


      • IcySpots, “appropriate management level” is an arbitrary number derived for administrative convenience and does not adhere to the very tenets of the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burro Act


        As the district court explained in Dahl v. Clark, the test as to appropriate wild horse and burro population levels is whether such levels will achieve and maintain a thriving, ecological balance on the public lands. Nowhere in the law or regulations is the BLM required to maintain any specific numbers of animals or to maintain populations in the numbers of animals existing at any particular time. The only law that requires the BLM to maintain populations is the 1971 Congressional law. The law must be followed and the law states, “that wild free-roaming wild horses [and burros] are to be considered in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural ecosystem of the public lands”.

        Thus, an AML established purely for BLM administrative reasons because it was the level of the wild horse and/or burro use at a particular point in time cannot be justified under statute. Where range studies or other quantifiable data have identified a need to begin monitoring studies with a specific number of wild horse [or burros] and those studies demonstrate that ONLY by reducing the number of wild horses or burros will a specific resource problem be corrected, the specified number of animals may be used.

        Accordingly, the court [IBLA 89-33] concluded that section 3(b) of the Act does not authorize the removal of wild horses [or burros] in order to achieve an AML which has been established for administrative reasons, rather than in terms of the optimum number which results in a thriving natural ecological balance and avoids deterioration of the range. The AML’s were originally established (and this admitted to by BLM) for administrative convenience, rather than based on a determination of the optimum number of wild horses and/or burros that would maintain the range in a thriving natural ecological balance. Additionally, the Secretary’s 1981 letter indicated that levels of wild horse [and burro] use was established by BLM only for administrative convenience, i.e. the absence of adequate “vegetation production data” to establish levels other than at current numbers, presumably because prior “one-point-in-time” vegetation inventory had been discredited. In addition, the “vegetation production data” must include usage by not only wild horses but also other wildlife and also domestic livestock.

        In other words, AML’s cannot be based on wild horse [and burro] usage only. The usage must be divided into all segments of animal usage and then per the 1971 ACT, the wild horses are to have the principal usage of the total and if there is insufficient forage for the legal wild horses and the legal wildlife then it is the livestock that are to be removed, 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).

        Liked by 1 person

        Judge Stops BLM’s Plan to Remove Entire Herd of Wild Horses

        The Court noted that “[t]he principal problem in maintaining wild horses in the West Douglas Herd Area is a major shift in wild horse grazing use patterns that has occurred since the early 1980’s….It is probable that intense energy exploration and development occurring in the northern part of the herd area has concentrated use in the south…. Accordingly, it is this shift in the West Douglas Herd’s grazing patterns, likely caused by human development, and not overpopulation, that formed the basis for BLM’s decision to remove the West Douglas Herd.”
        The Court found the BLM had not determined there was an overpopulation of wild horses in this herd and conceded the horses were not “excess” animals.
        The Court concluded that “decision to remove an entire herd of concededly non-excess wild free-roaming horses and burros is … impermissible”. With that finding, Judge Rosemary Collyer put an end to the BLM’s overreaching claim that it can round up and send to slaughter or otherwise destroy any wild horses, whether or not they are deemed “excess”. The judge put it bluntly, “Congress did not intend for BLM’s management authority to be so broad.”



      • IcySpots, perhaps a better way to have worded my original post is to have stated
        “NO ONE gave permission for Wild Horses or Burros to be removed from their Legal Herd Management Areas”.
        They did it “because they could”.
        Public comments and objections to capture and removal operations are either answered with “not within the scope of this EA”
        or…they are ignored altogether.
        Categorical Exclusions, “emergency” gathers and “Nuisance” Burro removals are frequently enacted when all else fails.


  3. A few years ago I was watching the live stream of the Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board meeting and at PRECISELY the time the public comments started, the meeting became silent, the video blacked out.
    The BLM KNOWS exactly what their managing for extinction plans are and they also know that the American public do NOT want these animals destroyed. The BLM hides the truth of their plans to destroy and slaughter the wild ones but let’s not kid ourselves … they are going full force ahead to do so and hiding it and lying about it and a full congressional investigation needs to be done to expose this corruption and then appropriate punishment needs to be handed out to ALL the guilty BLM employees.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Icey-
    I am afraid you missed the whole point? There is no reason for these wild horse and burro removals and destruction procedures because there is no “over-population” of wild horses and burros on their legally designated land.
    To be more specific … review this letter:
    Watch the video:


    • GG, missed nothing, I posted the actual law is all. If the BLM insists there is an overpopulation they have the right by law to take steps to address that. I happen to disagree with their proclamations and “estimates,” but the point was made above that the public never gave permission for removals, which just isn’t factual. The law is what everyone has to work with, and to change that takes action from Congress. Public opinion can and must be brought to our elected representatives as the only peaceful path towards meaningful change. Otherwise, it’s the public’s opinion (which is divided) against that of the BLM and USFS, both of which have been given legal authorities by Congress that the public simply has not.


      • You rarely “miss” anything so perhaps my wording was not fair but the fact is there is a legal term for how the BLM operates. It is “Regulatory Capture”. Regulatory capture is a form of political corruption that occurs when a regulatory agency, created to act in the public interest instead advances the special interest groups’ desires that dominate the industry or sector it is charged with regulating. Regulatory capture is a form of government failure and it creates an opening for behavior in ways injurious to the public and in this case injurious to the wild horses and burros that belong to American citizens.

        In addition, the BLM is in clear violation of Title 18; falsifying legal documents. A few of many examples include, but are certainly not limited to, but prove this violation by the BLM’s statements of annual population increases such as the Buckhorn herd area 237% (71 total horses giving birth to 168 foals) in one year and the Black Rock herd area 418% (88 horses giving birth to 368 foals) in one year. Wild horses and burros have an eleven-month gestation period and give birth to only one foal. The above BLM annual population increase statements are biologically and mathematically impossible but this is the type of non-credible data being stated by the BLM and provided to you. Another example of BLM’s mathematics is their statement that the Black Mt. herd area wild burro population before capture/removal was 175 animals and after they captured and removed 80 animals, the remaining population was 635! Since when does 175, minus 80, equal 635? There are many, many other examples of the false and highly deceitful data that BLM provides to the public and to Congress.


      • GG, agreed all around. My point was and is that the current law gives the authority for determining numbers and removal strategies entiresly to the BLM/USFS, not the public other than indirectly through acts of Congress.
        Regulatory capture is indeed a problem, but so far this has been allowed and nothing is ever prosecuted (i.e., Ken Salazar). Saying they didn’t have “permission” is an exercise in pointlessness.

        The only way to change this is to enforce existing laws and perhaps through Congress amend or create new ones. This is in fact what pro-slaughter forces are pushing for as I write this — they got the original protection law amended (Burns Amendment) through subterfuge and frame their argument now as enabling “full” use of the law to remove “excess” animals, when no proof of “excess” is required other than their own proclamations. If the public defines “excess” differently, they have no authority or power to alter the course of the BLM/USFS, at least today.


  5. The Public Stakeholders did NOT give permission for land transfers either:

    Good to Be King (excerpts)

    In 2003, twenty-nine wild horses were taken through yet another official declaration of yet another “emergency” due to starvation, drought and to prevent the inhumane suffering of watching them slowly die in an area that could not feed them. Click Here to learn more.

    These were the Coyote Canyon wild horses, the last herd in Southern California and the last of their kind with their genetic test results showing strong Spanish ancestry, which means they had been living in the Canyon for a very, very long time. Of course, the results of the genetic tests were not released to the public until all the wild horses had been eliminated and of course, they weren’t starving at all as anyone can see by their round up photo here. Click Here to read about their final round up.

    Once managed by BLM and protected by the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act, the Coyote Canyon home range spanned both state and federal lands – but their “protected” habitat and status was traded away to the State of California, a now common-place move that is often behind the eradication of wild horse and burro herds. Click Here to read more.

    Though almost all of these types of land transfers are still under federal agencies ruled by the Secretary of the Interior, the one Congress charged with the duty of protecting our wild heritage, the herds are only protected on BLM managed land. So…if government officials can transfer the land or just a little piece of it like a critical water source to another agency, even if it is still overseen by the Secretary of the Interior, the wild horses and burros and their home ranges suddenly become “unprotected” and disappear – no questions asked.

    So here are a few questions somebody might want to ask NOW, while everyone is in a listening mood and a few are actually demanding answers!

    “How much habitat, how many herds have been eliminated through this split jurisdiction”?

    “How about ending this schizophrenic policy that allows the Secretary to authorize the elimination and/or shooting of wild horse and burro herds if they are not on BLM managed lands”?

    The Sheldon wild horses and burros fall under this category as their home range and protected status was sold out to U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.


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