By : William E. Simpson II
Native species American wild horses are vanishing from the American landscape at an unprecedented rate. Why?
A lone wild stallion looks into a valley that once was home to hundreds of native-species American wild horses.
Under guidance from the Department of Interior (‘DOI’) Secretary Deb Haaland and executed by the Bureau of Land Management (‘BLM’), wild horses are being rounded up at an alarming rate.
And the few wild horses remaining after the roundups are treated with dangerous chemicals that are couched as ‘contraception’.
It’s a fact that; after this latest second-round of so-called ‘gathers’ in the past year, dubiously claimed as necessary due to the drought, wild horse populations in the west will be taken down to levels that are genetically non-sustainable; in-breeding is now assured.
Compounding what can be argued as genocide, are the ignorant supporters of using contraceptive chemicals on wild horses, which are wildlife.
The use of contraceptives such as porcine zona pellucida (‘PZP’) and GonaCon on native species American wild horses is the sham:
1) Deciding which horses will breed and which will not, either by intention or happenstance, is by definition ‘selective breeding’ and is counter to the critical role the natural selection plays in maintaining the genetic vigor of any species of animal, and is the first step in domestication; and
2) Science shows that PZP works best on horses (mares) with the best immune systems, which presents a serious problem:
Mares with poor immune systems can still give birth even after being treated with PZP.
This results in selective breeding in favor of foals that likely also carry their mare’s genes for a poor immune system. This stacks the genetic deck-of-cards against the resulting population of immune-depressed wild horses, which arguable could fall-prey to any disease spreading within the herd.
Why Are Wild Horses Being Persecuted?
The problem in a nutshell is the media (National Geographic., Discovery, CBS, NBC, ABC, and other national TV, print, online media outlets) have pummeled the court of public opinion, supporting the BLM’s unfounded conjectures and misinformation that; ‘wild horses are a menace destroying landscape and are overpopulated’, and ‘have no natural predators’, both statements being false.
Coupled with that, we have the leading (as in the loudest, not via merit) non-profit wild horse advocacy organizations, each self-promoting their own ideas of so-called solutions, which are in fact, not solutions for a sustainable ‘wild and free’ population of wild horses on the American landscape.
There are far too many people with opinions about wild horse management who have never even spent a year (24-7) living among wild horses to gather the insights needed to discuss their management from a fully-informed perspective…
TV news reports, movies, books, hear-say and field-trips watching them over a sandwich and a telephoto lens, or hanging-out with broken-spirited wild horses that have been taken out of nature are not methods suited to learning from them!
They teach, but in order to learn from wild horses, humans who want to learn have to make the requisite sacrifices to live among them as their students without any preconceived notions.
I have spent the last 7-years of my life as a student of the free-roaming wild Ones here in the Soda Mountain wilderness.
Even after 7-years of 4-seasons and many, many moons, I am still learning from the wild Ones about how they live and what they want and need as sentient beings with free-will.
I have also learned, first-hand from them, that they play a vital role via their co-evolved mutualisms with the flora and fauna that also occupy the ecosystems benefited by the wild Ones…
My preliminary study of the ecological benefits of free-roaming wild horses, including reducing the frequency and intensity of wildfires, has been published, yet, some non-profits will not publish it, even though they have been granted expressed permission to do so.
However, in Europe, the people there who apparently aren’t so caught-up in money related concerns or ego, have published my Study.
Moreover, complicating matters further are the self-interested non-profits who are unwilling to collaborate because;
1) Fear of losing donation-base to other orgs. or individuals; and,
2) They only like their own ideas… even as flawed as they are;
a. I.E. contraception; and,
b. Commingling livestock and wild horses in areas that, after 300-years of primarily managing such areas for livestock production (killing off apex predators), are no longer suited for wild horses that require natural selection via their co-evolved predators for genetic vigor and population balance on the landscape.
3) Stuck in obsolescence; these Orgs won’t acknowledge that; the socioeconomic changes in America over the past 50-years since the 1971 WHBPA was passed have had major impacts on the American landscape, largely due to the consumerism that is supported by the vast majority of Americans.
Without any doubt, logical overview calls for a new paradigm in wild horse management that uses modern ecological science coupled with a paleo-ecological overview of suitable areas for wild horse management that are synergised by Natural methods and tactics.
Enforcing pathetically ignorant, artificial methods upon the natural world is something that only an ignorant human would propose or do…
And this is exactly why, as humans, we find ourselves living in the dung-heap of our folly and on a planet that we are slowly destroying due to the ignorance, greed and ego of Human-kind, not Equids….
Wild horses have been steadfast good-stewards of the natural world over the course of their 55-Million years of evolution on this planet.
It’s a sad fact that some wild horse non-profits share responsibility to one degree or another in the demise of native-species American wild horses via their continuing to offer pathetic non-natural half-measures and measures that have now taken American wild horses right to the brink of extinction.
In the waning moments of the sad story of America’s wild horses, we can only hope that non-profits step-back from their currently flawed beliefs, and make the required radical change off the path they are currently on, as the last sands of their potential survival pass from the hourglass.