Horse News

Government Sellout: Wild Horses and Burros are the Canaries in the Mine

by R.T. Fitch ~ President and Co-Founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“We STILL speak for the voiceless…”

My apologies, I have been silent the past 48 hours as I attempted to digest the tornado of misinformation and lawlessness that has a death grip on the throat of our, obviously, inept federal government.

The paralyzing, backstabbing, power grabbing, fistfight in DC worsens with each passing second and the public turns a blind eye in hopes that the entire mess will work itself out and we can go back to a kinder more civil way of doing business as we used to do decades ago.

But no, it only gets worse.  Last Thursday, amid all the other horse-crap going on, the Senate Committee voted to fully fund a $35 million dollar plan to eradicate and wipe out our federally protected wild horses and burros on their rightful range across our public lands.

Behind closed doors, with no public disclosure of the bill’s text and content, the Senate voted to pass the bill. A bill carefully crafted by the Cattlemen’s Association and supported by special interest, sold out, money grabbing, alleged welfare organizations such as HSUS, ASPCA, Return to Freedom, Public Lands Council, et al.  The bill supports a plan to remove 15-20,000 annually, and illegally, from their rightful range, possible Frankenstein like surgical sterilization mutilation of wild mares, PZP to interrupt their fertility cycles and ultimately opening up the door to send our American icons across our Northern and Southern borders for brutal slaughtering and butchering for disgusting human consumption in foreign lands.

Bloody Halloween came early this year.


This bill is not law, yet, and the BLM has many hurdles ahead if they want this to stick.  A quick review indicates that the version passed by the House is different than the one just passed by the Senate so the separate bills will need to go to full floor vote and into a consolidation process which gives us another chance to intervene.

I am aware that we are all suffering from a touch of sensory overload and battle fatigue but this is not the time to quit, we must continue to act on behalf of our last remaining wild horses and burros.

Please call or write your Senators, below is a recommend script/text:

“I respectfully yet vehemently object to passing the Interior 2020 budget provisions for the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro “Path Forward” Program.

The BLM has not released their report, requested by Congress, for inclusion in the debate. Passing a budget, without the agencies open participation that provides appropriate public participation in the debate, is inexcusable.

The BLM program must be held to current levels and authorities including the provision against sales for commercial purposes (slaughter). We must freeze the program until a full review is completed and the BLM report is released, publicly, and reviewed.

I do not support the wild horse and burro provisions in this new spending bill. These provisions will not fix a single flaw in the current, failing, program. The provisions create a greater burden on the taxpayer, no responsibility to public resource and simply provide additional funding for private, special interests.

Awarding $35 million to a corporate agenda in the Senate bill is a betrayal to the American taxpayer.

Propose the following amendment to the budget: Please freeze the BLM budget and authorities to 2019 levels until a full and open evaluation and debate occurs. BLM must be required to release the report requested by Congress for the 2020 debate, before any new funding is appropriated.”

You can find your Senator at

We, at Wild Horse Freedom Federation, rarely put our hand out and ask for assistance but we need your help to stay in the legal game surrounding this issue.

If you can lend any fiscal support, it surely would be appreciated.

18 replies »

  1. Thank you for this great letter. It is to the point and addresses many of our concerns! Sometimes we almost are so shocked at this we become paralyzed to the actions we must take! How could these so called human beings turn their backs on the very animals they are suppose to protect? They are greedy, useless low life swamp creatures! What am I going to do? I will type the letter, sign it a present it personally next week to each office! In addition I will be carrying my picket signs with me! RT you are very right. We may only have ONE shot at making this right until the elections. I have already met with people who are going to run against candidates who have done nothing! And they have been shocked at the State of the affairs with regard to the BLM And they have told me I have their support! So this was good news to my ears! I am not lucky to live in a state where I could view the Wild Horses and Burros families. But if we get over this huge life or death challenge, I want to know where I can travel to see them! When I was in Nevada no one knew who to call. So we need some contacts. WE NEED Americans to see them! Tourism is a money maker and supporter so let’s get Americans behind our fight! And please look into that Motorcade Protest in DC in November. Let’s ignite this spark into a fire and take back our Public Lands and seek the security and protection for OUR Wild Horses and Burros in the Name of Wild Horse Annie! The true champion and Warrior of our Wild Horses and Burros! I’m in and will donate what ever I can to this much needed cause! God bless and keep all the Horse Warriors safe for this is truly WAR!

    Liked by 3 people


    “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.” Using Science to Improve the BLM Wild Horse & Burro Program: A Way Forward, National Academy of Sciences. 2013. (Emphasis added.)

    Why is this outrageous? The arbitrary AML of 26,710 is roughly the same number of wild horses that existed in 1971 when Congress declared they were “fast disappearing from the American West.” It’s a number that prompted Congress to act swiftly and unanimously to protect them, lest they disappear forever. 26,710 is too low a number to sustain genetic viability, putting most herds at risk of health issues, inbreeding and eventual extinction.

    The fight is not over yet. The House and Senate bills differ, so they’ll go through the Conference Committee for resolution and agreed upon language. Then it will go back through both Senate and House Appropriations Committees for a final vote. We have strong champions in the House for our wild horses and burros. Your calls, your emails, and your letters matter. Keep up the fight. Let your voices be heard!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. No need to apologize RT, as we understand your frustration & anger completely!! I AGREE with all of the previous comments here! We’ll keep up the fight & we have your back ALWAYS! Forever fighting for our innocent ones.. WE ARE THEIR VOICE!! 🐴❤🐴❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. An unbelievable tragic betrayal of our wild horses, our public lands and our civil rights, as the desire and private gain trumped the will of the majority of citizens who love wild horses. We are here with you and gathering strength to do what we must to protect our wild horses from the path to extinction. Thank You from us for working hard for the horses and all who love them. Jetara Séhart, President, Love Wild Horses®© Wild Horse Protection Act FN

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you RT for the sample letter and Louie for Ginger Kathren’s input. I’ve already sent a number of letters out to some Senators including mine who generally don’t respond well to these requests.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Here’s the language the Senate Committee evidently passed. It has more holes than Swiss cheese. How many can you find?

    Wild Horses and Burros — The Committee acknowledges that on-range wild horse and burro population growth is and has been on an unsustainable trajectory. Without appropriate remedial action, rangelands face continued and severe deterioration in condition, other species face the loss of habitat, and the wild horse and burro populations face the threat of population collapses. The Committee, after consultation with the Bureau on an achievable investment in Bureau resources and fiscal year 2020 programmatic capacity, includes a $335,000,000 increase to the Wild Horse and Burro Program to enable the Bureau to implement an aggressive, non-lethal population control strategy. A central focus of this strategy must be prioritizing overpopulated Herd Management Areas for removals that exceed the projected annual growth rate coupled with comprehensive on-range population growth suppression to reduce the future growth rate. All removals must e conducted in strict compliance with the Bureau’s Comprehensive Animal Welfare Program, and any population growth suppression strategies must be proven, safe, and humane. The strategy will not include any sale or actions that result in the destruction of healthy animals, which continues to be prohibited by this bill. The Bureau should work with interested stakeholders to further develop and implement appropriate removal, fertility control, and relocation plans, including the relocation of horses from both the range and high-cost holding facilities into lower-cost, off-range pastures, and to increase adoptions. The Bureau is directed to keep the Committee informed of its progress.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Notice the bill’s language prioritizes removals only in areas that EXCEED growth projections, so if these are already higher than is biologically possible that means almost no removals would thus be legal.

      Liked by 1 person

    • GG, help me understand this chart as I want to share it (and cite it with author and date, if possible). For example, the Centennial CA entry for 2013 shows a population of 527 increased by 487, but this is entered as an over 1200 percent increase? By my take this is less than 100 percent (487 is less than 527) and the population didn’t even double. Where do you get the 1218 percent, and how?

      2013 527 487 1218%

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for asking. All population figures used in the chart(s) come directly from the BLM published annual herd statistics. These are published online each year although with the recent removal of many BLM documents I’m not sure if the older ones are still available online – but I saved them.

        As for the Centennial HMA, the BLM statistics data stated that the wild horse population was “40” wild horses as of March 1, 2012. The following year as of March 1, 2013 the BLM stated the population was 527 wild horses. Therefore the increase per BLM was 487 wild horses in one year. That is an increase of 1218% in one year.

        I agree that this looks very “fishy” – even more fishy than the BLM’s usual bogus population figures – but that is what they published.
        Here is the link from the BLM website for this year’s (March 1, 2019) population and land statistics.

        Click to access 2019_Final_HAHMA_Stats_05022019_final_508.pdf

        You may wish to contact BLM and ask for the annual statistics for previous years.

        Further information and the spreadsheet data a of last year (March 1, 2018) is available on this link. (bottom of article “CLICK HERE” will take you to the spreadsheet).


      • GG, thanks. I see my mistake now, I wasn’t looking at the prior year column so missed the “40” but see now how the years are stacked, not in-line. Since “overpopulation” is the dogma of death before Congress, this information needs to be much more widely circulated. It seems the original law requiring a complete inventory still doesn’t exist, we have mostly computer models and conflicting live counts. Before making any fatal decisions it seems only right to require an actual, independently verified live population inventory. Think of it like the US Census, but for wild horses and burros. We can put people on the moon but not count a few thousand wild animals in designated (and mostly fenced) western states?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, as you said, “Since “overpopulation” is the dogma of death before Congress, this information needs to be much more widely circulated.” BLM feeds Congress and the public the bogus wild horse and burro population figures to support their deceptive “over population” and “excess” lies.

        As I am sure you know, the original wild horse and burro herd acreage was about 42,403,054 acres. Mathematically speaking, those legal wild horse acres could support ~ 212,015 wild horses and burros (using 200 acres per animal). The bottom line is the fraudulent wild horse and burro populations that BLM spews which will be the end for our wild ones unless the truth is exposed.


  7. From Friends of Animals

    A most unsavory collaboration between HSUS, ASPCA, the group Return to Freedom (RTF) and the meat industry revealed itself this spring when all four jointly submitted a proposal to Congress that outlined a longterm management plan for wild horses and burros in the American West.

    HSUS et al’s vision of the future for wild horses— an anathema to ours—would kick them off public lands, allowing a few to remain in zoo-like settings. Six states have already lost their wild horse populations. Morally, that’s just criminal.

    These groups have revealed they are poised to assist the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in removing 15,000 to 20,000 wild horses a year from public lands in the next three years, while also organizing a large-scale fertility program.

    It comes as no surprise to us that the alliance agreed to drastically increase BLM’s use of fertility control. HSUS holds the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registration for the fertility pesticide PZP, and it was just a matter of time before the groups were on board with violent roundups. None of them have bothered to challenge roundups in the last four years or have joined our fight for broader implementation of the Wild Horse and Burro Act of 1971 to increase wild horse populations and habitat size.

    HSUS never provided evidence that PZP doesn’t have negative side effects; it just offered information about the efficacy of PZP, and actually requested waivers for most of the studies.

    Friends of Animals sued the EPA and argued its case against PZP use in an Oregon courthouse this summer in the hopes of cancelling the registration of PZP altogether. If a judge hands us a victory, wild mares will no longer be forcibly drugged with this fertility pesticide.

    When HSUS, et al joined forces with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, they knew our arguments. They knew that wild horses have lost more than 20 million acres of habitat to cattle and sheep ranching since passage of the 1971 law. They also knew that cattle and sheep ranchers, along with energy interests, are treated like clients by BLM because wild horses compete for forage, water and habitat with doomed cows and sheep.

    They knew that increased roundups mean wild horses are headed for extinction. After the public and other while horse advocates sounded off when they heard the news, Friends of Animals assured them not to lose hope, that really nothing’s changed and that those so-called animal advocacy groups are just out of the closet. They are now on the record as BLM assets.

    Rest assured, FoA has faced the truth that BLM, a mouthpiece for the meat industry, has created a massive crisis of storing wild horses in holding prisons and has high hopes for slaughtering these horses. And we will continue to fight them every step of the way. We’ve already won more than a dozen legal challenges. Holding BLM’s feet to the fire through litigation is what will prevent mustangs from being ripped from their homes and families on federal public lands. That diligence will continue with or without well-heeled groups whose motivations appear to accommodate the meat industry while telling the public it’s for the animals.

    Our vison is one of true ecological zones on federal public lands, where the landscape and animals are free from exploitation and management, just as the protection act intended. It is something we cannot give up on. We are thankful to our members who help us make that vision a reality through our legal efforts, which have become even more important as others throw in the towel.

    Liked by 1 person

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