Wild Burros

Government Agency Revives Plans for Perverse & Deadly Horse Sterilization Experiments

NOTE TO OUR READERS:  The public comment period for the BLM Environmental Assessment for sterilization has been extended to June 12th, so we will issue an ACTION ALERT before then, so that you can submit your public comment to the BLM.

Veterinarian Leon Pielstick doing an ovariectomy via colpotomy

Source:  In Defense of Animals

BURNS, OR (May 21, 2019) — The United States Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is once again callously planning to sterilize wild horse mares using a gruesome procedure so inhumane that many veterinarians refuse to perform it. The surgery, called ovariectomy via colpotomy, is controversial even for domestic mares who are used to human handling and given normal surgical protections such as sterile conditions, anesthesia, and complete long-term aftercare. The situation at the Burns Corral in Oregon, where the deadly experiments are slated to take place, is not conducive to any of those conditions.

“This experiment inflicts extreme pain and suffering upon innocent wild mares and often results in their ultimate death,” said Marilyn Kroplick M.D., President of In Defense of Animals. “The BLM is ignoring its history of unsuccessful attempts at this appalling ovariectomy via colpotomy experiment on wild horses. In Defense of Animals stands against this medieval torture experiment and we encourage everyone to speak out to prevent these perverse and deadly experiments on wild horses.”

This is the third time that the Bureau has tried to perform the barbaric experiment on wild horse mares, under the guise of a “study.” After two major universities dropped out, lawsuits, and massive public outcry, the first two attempts were abandoned by the Bureau. Many thousands of In Defense of Animals supporters wrote to both of the universities initially involved, and also to the BLM in protest of this vile procedure from their past attempts.

A disturbing video shows and describes the brutal ovariectomy via colpotomy procedure performed on a fully-conscious but immobilized burro. Of a total of six horses and burros in the study, two died. The remaining four only survived after “intensive post-operative veterinary care.”

It is difficult to comprehend why the Bureau is continuing to push for this cruel, expensive, and deeply unpopular study when other more humane and proven fertility control options are readily available; U.S. Representatives Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Dina Titus (D-NV) have already proposed appropriations spending for humane fertility control programs.

The BLM has likely been emboldened to re-attempt its sterilization experiment following a recent collaboration with livestock industry lobbying groups, the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), and Return to Freedom (RTF.) With the support of these organizations, the BLM requested appropriations funding for “population growth suppression methods.” This intentionally vague language has now opened the door for BLM to move ahead once again with its brutally cruel ovariectomy via colpotomy proposal.

19 replies »

    • Apparently,, no they cant be left alone! Over the years, I have watched & read about various groups “working with the BLM & its stakeholders” & sure does seem as though nothing is ever enough! If the organizations that care about our wild horses & burros give a little, there never is any attempt from BLM INC to meet even close to half way. They are corrupt & underhanded in their so-called management – they dont want to work WITH people who advocate for humane treatment or – shockingly to the BLM – actual HERD areas where the horses could live without competition from livestock – EGADS NO! So its not enough for the ASPCA, RTF, etc to give in to their demands – no, no, no, they continue with the brutal, inhumane surgical way to permanently sterilize these native animals! How many NAS reports have said the same thing every time? There is NO basis for the AML limits that have been laid down by the BLM – There has never been an ACCURATE count of the real number of wild horses & burros – only this agency’s guesses! The agency itself is largely responsible for any so-called reproductive increase simply by continuing these asinine roundups – I know this, we all know this. Anyone who pays any attention to wildlife & what happens when large numbers are “culled”. The remaining animals reproduce to make up for it. HOW HARD IS THAT TO UNDERSTAND??
      Everyone who reads & comments here is well aware of all that, i know – just needed to rant..

      Liked by 2 people

    • Why are they not even disguising simply castrating or banding the male population. It’s cheaper and so much safer. Is it because this is a man’s decision? Leave the poor mares alone!


    • Betty, if you do some basic research on wild herd dynamics you will learn that castrating males won’t make much, if any, difference in population numbers. Since you seem to know something about breeding domestic horses, just how many mares do you think a single stud will breed in a given year, if allowed unfettered access? Any mares he can find, is the answer, and he will find them!

      The BLM knows this and they are proposing (yet again) to tear out wild mare’s ovaries instead. This procedure is NOT common in domestic horses as it is high risk, expensive, requires extensive sanitation and aftercare, and still has high fatality and complication rates.

      I’d also point out that what you might decide is “inferior” in a particular domestic show horse breed may in fact be a benefit in a wild horse, in wild conditions. As one example, we’ve bred for tiny hooves in quarter horses and thoroughbreds for so long that we’ve made them structurally more prone to injuries and chronic unsoundness. Who would decide what was “inferior” for wild horses? Our laws and the laws of nature have proved that natural selection is the ultimate decider, producing results better than any human fashion might.

      Further, delivering them to people’s “homes” who have no means, talents or finances to care for them has been repeatedly proven to be a bad idea (for people and for horses). Our wild horses are paid for already by the public to roam free on the public lands, as our laws mandate—no less wild than grizzly bears or other American wildlife.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Our society is waking up to a vast amount of covered up violence, and bringing perpetrators to justice. Think of the Catholic church pedophile priests, the gymnast “doctor” Nassar and those who knew but did nothing for year after year. Isn’t it about time to shine the same amount of exposure on the BLM and fire them from any dealings with the ultimate innocents, “protected” wild animals?

    This third effort at tearing out ovaries without justification or humanity surely qualifies as a “three strikes” matter for the BLM itself!

    Why are they still given lethal authority when it can be clearly proven their “management” is nearly always to the detriment of our wild horses and burros, against the intent and letter of the law, comes at ever-increasing public expense, and is always skewed for the benefit of private interests?

    They have failed us and should be fired as any others would have been long ago. What will it take?

    Liked by 1 person

      Interior whistleblower complaints rise – but why?
      Hannah Northey, E&E News reporter

      Six months after he started work at the Interior Department, Matthew Allen says he became a marked man.
      Hired as communications director for the Bureau of Land Management in the fall of 2016, Allen was praised by then-BLM Director Neil Kornze for being cool under pressure and having a resume that included military service as a combat engineer.

      Allen, 38, who was demoted last year, is part of a growing number of Interior employees filing complaints with the independent Office of Special Counsel (OSC) alleging retaliation or blowing the whistle on alleged mismanagement, wasteful spending, abuse of authority, and perceived dangers to public health or safety.

      In Allen’s case, Interior officials cited “performance deficiencies” and accused him of failing to collaborate with others in his office or provide a new media strategy. For his part, Allen says he was outed for blowing the whistle on the agency’s unwillingness to answer public inquiries on national monuments.


      Liked by 1 person

    • THANK YOU Icyspots!

      What WILL it take? Petitions and emails at this point may not be as effective as actually calling these officials to really put a voice to it… be brave everyone. E PLURIBUS UNUM… ‘Out of many, one’

      Congress is in recess until June 3rd, but we can still contact our reps…

      House of Representatives – DC :

      202 – 224-3121 (switchboard will connect you to all of your Congressional representatives)


      The office of Nancy Pelosi – DC :

      202 – 225-4965 (Speaker of the House Pelosi does not answer EMAILS outside the 12th district)

      Liked by 1 person

      • BTW – just a suggestion to those that may find it easier to write an email or sign a petition (still very important to do also) in lieu of actually calling your reps and higher Congressional officials… if you get choked- up, emotional or tongue-tied like I do at times, just write out what you definitely want to say as if you are writing an email, and then just read it out loud. That works!
        Remember, these officials are only human just like we are, and they really want to hear from you.

        ‘When you shine a bright light, the rats scatter’

        (old American proverb) 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  2. BLM/WARM SPRINGS HMA/DNA/April 12, 2019


    David King/district engineer
    Tara McClain/realty specialist
    Connie Pettyjohn/management and program analyst-transportation and roads
    Kyle Jackson/rangeland management specialist…upland vegetation ,livestock grazing management
    Marsha Reponen/resource protection specialist-hazardous materials or solid waste

    Interdisciplinary Analysis
    Lisa Grant
    Chad Rott (written signature doesn’t seem to match the typed signature…hard to read but first name appears to be “Jon”)

    F. Others consulted
    Robert Sharp
    Paul Griffin
    Stacy Fenton
    Brenda Lincoln Wojtaniik
    Robert Hopper
    Burns Paiute Tribe (I’ll bet..sure they were “consulted”)
    Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone Tribe
    Livestock grazing permittees
    Surrounding landowners
    U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
    Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Leave these poor horses alone.
    If you want to slow down the population, go after the Stallions, everything is on the outside!!!!!!!!
    This all about the land and money. Mother nature has its own ways of keeping things in check.


    • Think it through and do a bit of research on how wild herds function. Gelding stallions won’t make a dent in populations but would certainly eradicate genetic viability to no good purpose.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I really just do not understand how people can be so cruel to other species, and elevate ourselves so highly. I thought they decided against this once before? I am disgusted, and I just read about another horse – the 26th – dying at Santa Ana. I thought they had closed the track until they could figure out what is going on? Just can’t, I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. From Photojournalist-Journalist

    Wild Horse Sterilization Government Programs: Ethics? Morals? or Humane Decay (excerpts)

    Sterilization of Wild Horses on Public Lands? We see an ongoing travesty here, within government agencies of the Bureau of Land Management, the Humane Society, the Wild Horse and Burro Board, and other affiliated non-profits and corporations alike – the Travesty?

    The travesty, in reality an ethical and moral horror show, is the fact the sterilization of wild horse’s entire premise, yes, the very basis of reasoning for it, remains and is false. Yes, a lie of tremendous proportions, and its ongoing misrepresentation of facts . . .

    The Nazi propaganda program took advantage of a well-developed German film industry that was already being retooled as an instrument of the state in order to maintain and expand backing for the regime. The general pattern of slick, well-produced films utilized repetition of misleading and erroneous scientific information and statistics, coupled with powerful emotional images that confirmed pre-existing prejudices and stereotypes. These techniques were particularly effective when applied to the forced sterilization program and to the euthanasia program that would follow when public opinion was sufficiently prepared.
    These techniques were also used to inform and indoctrinate those personally involved in carrying out the initiatives and to help maintain their level of commitment.

    We defeated the Nazi’s – not from hatred, but from motivated paradigms from such honesty as the difference between Right and Wrong – and a truth from all of our hearts that life is to be respected and cherished – not slaughtered or sterilized out of existence!


    Liked by 2 people

  6. Exactly Louie C !!!
    IT IS A HOLOCAUST of our Wild Horses, and the Nazi regime comparison could not be more accurate or more glaringly apparent. Their motivation was a bit different though, in that the current regime’s pay-off is based not only on inhumane cruelty and vile immorality, but on the enormous $$$ factor!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Ione Victoria Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.