The Necessity of Calling-Out Bad Management Policies
Before we undertake an exploration of the policy debate in regard to wild horse management, we need to define the important difference between ‘ad hominem attack’ and ‘attacking a flawed belief or policy’.
And, we need to establish some basic facts about wild horses that are critical in regard to establishing the sustainable natural conservation of American wild horses.
- All wild horses in the world originated in North America.
- The modern horse (E. Caballus) evolved in North America 1.8-million years ago and is a bona-fide north American native species.
- Not all North American wild horses went extinct during the last Ice Age
- All north American apex predators are the co-evolved predators of wild horses and in balanced ecosystems they regulate populations and maintain genetic vigor.
- Columbus first landed in North America in October of 1492 (late 15th century).
- In 1580, just 88-years after Columbus’s first landing in north America, Sir Francis Drake explored the west coast of America and documented wild horses living among the indigenous peoples on landscape that is today the Oregon-California border.
- Cattle, sheep and goats were introduced onto the north American continent with the arrival of European settlers as early as the beginning of the 16th century
- Most wild horses were displaced from their evolved natural habitats due to activities by European settlers starting in the 17th century and continuing to modern times.
- European settlers reintroduced significant numbers of domesticated breeds of horses onto the north American continent starting in the 17th century
- During the 18th century, estimates placed north American bison populations at approximately 60-million+ animals. Estimates on wild horse populations ranged between 10-20-million horses.
- By 1889, the bison population that stood in excess of 60-million animals in the late 18th century, was culled down to just 541 animals by 1889 . Similar declines in wild horse populations also occurred due to human activities.
- At beginning of the 20th century (early 1900’s) and prior to World War 1 (‘WW1’) north American wild horses numbered in the realm of 3-million wild horses. During WW1, America sent 1-million wild horses to Europe, further reducing north American wild horse populations.
- Cattle inventory data shows that the number of cattle in the U.S. was 6 million head in 1867, just after the Civil War. Cattle numbers expanded continuously to 60 million head by 1890 
- By the 20th century, over 200-million acres of land in America had been converted-to or was being used as livestock grazing areas. As a part of this livestock-based economy, apex predators were culled with extreme prejudice to enhance livestock production. By the 21st century, large apex predators such as the wolf, mountain lion, and Grizzly bear were approaching local extinction levels in North America.
- In 1971, president Richard Nixon signed into law The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act (WFRHBA), designed to protect wild horses and burros on federal land, placing them under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Forest Service (USFS).
Among other things, the 1971 Act provided:
- Made it a federal crime for anyone to harass or kill “wild” horses or burros on federal land. [Is chasing horses with firearms and shooting them with projectiles filled with PZP harassment?]
- Set the groundwork for further studies of the animals’ behavior and habitats.
- Permitted that public land could be set aside for use as herd management areas.
- Requires that herd management plans “maintain a thriving natural ecological balance among wild horse populations, wildlife, livestock, and vegetation and to protect the range from the deterioration associated with overpopulation.”
- Allows for public lands to be utilized for multiple purposes while improving the health and stability of “wild” horse and burro populations.
16. During the period from 1971 to present-day, accelerated consumer-driven product demands and need for raw materials (oil, gas, minerals and livestock products) greatly increased competition for public land uses by numerous stakeholders. These stakeholders are largely made-up of massive corporations with annual revenues in the hundreds of $-millions. These numerous corporations wield tremendous pollical influence via $-millions in campaign donations to both primary political parties. This powerful financial influence guarantees that the interests of these corporations, and the consumers they serve, will be accommodated. That overarching accommodation has driven the ongoing removal of American wild horses from select public lands where they are deemed to be in conflict with commercially profitable enterprises. 
17. 99% of all American’s are part of the ‘consumerism collective’. If you own, use or buy any of the following products and/or services, you are part-of and adding to the consumer-driven economic pressures that are impacting wildlife and wild horses on Public Lands, so stop ignoring your own contribution to the problem:
a. Any device or car that uses a lithium battery (cars, cell phones, computers, battery-operated power tools, etc.); and,
b. Any motorized equipment, vehicle or heating fuel source that uses LPG gas, propane, diesel, gasoline, coal; and,
c. Any products or devices that contain copper, aluminum, cobalt; and,
d. Any products that contain petroleum distillates including, pharmacy products, lotions and preparations, cologne and perfume, hair and body products, etc.; and,
e. Livestock based products including; meats (fast foods) tallow, leather, pharmaceuticals, etc.; and,
f. Electricity that is generated from coal-fired power plants; and,
g. Products or services using compressed gases such as helium
Proposed Methods for reducing numbers of wild horses on certain public lands in north America in response to economic pressures coming from consumerism:
1. Rounding-up wild horses, and;
h. Trying to adopt them out as ‘trainable horses’; and,
i. Invent programs where ‘wild’ horses can allegedly be used by humans; I.E. Tipping programs, prison programs, etc.; and,
j. Slaughter (is a known paradigm); and,
k. Off-range long-term holding costing taxpayers over $150-million/year (do horses get sold out the ‘back gate’?)
The issues and ineffectiveness of ‘methods’ in category #1 (above) are so inherently flawed they are largely rejected as so-called solutions for managing American wild horses by most informed wild horse advocates. Unvarnished data (and kill-auction data) show that less than 5% of all wild horses rounded-up are successfully made into a ‘trained’ domesticated horse, resulting in thousands of wild horses entering the slaughter pipeline.
Trying to make any ‘wild’ animal, horse or not, into a pet is a mistake, just as it would be to attempt to make a wolf into a pet dog. Wild horses resist training, which is why so many Bureau of Land Management adoption program (‘AIP’ – Adoption Incentive Program) horses end-up in at the kill-buyer auctions and over the border in Mexico’s pet-food plants. Data from one study shows that during one 22-month period, over 1,000 protected American wild horses that were branded by the BLM went to slaughter, contrary to what the Bureau of Land Management claims: Published Report: https://phys.org/news/2022-09-wild-horses-slaughter.html
2. Genetic mutilation via castration of stallions and using chemicals (like PZP & GonaCon) to sterilize wild mares.
a. Using American Veterans to stalk, harass and shoot free-roaming wild horses under the guise of a proposed bill called the Veterans for Mustangs Act.
This bill defies logic and common sense and the title is an oxymoron given that virtually no combat Veterans support the bill that was designed and lobbied by people with no combat experience. More about this bill here: https://www.einnews.com/pr_news/614834024/
Contrary to the propaganda by lobbyists and spin doctors selling the proposed bill ‘Veterans for Mustangs Act’, there is not a single peer-reviewed published study that proves there is any psychological benefit for combat veterans suffering from PTSD by having them stalk and shoot American wild horses with deadly high-powered gas-operated rifles that fire a heavy syringe containing a genetic poison (PZP).
10 things you need to know about ‘fertility control’ with PZP
(By: Marybeth Devlin – RIP: sourced at Protect Mustangs)
- PZP — The Pesticide: PZP is an EPA-registered pesticide manufactured from the ovaries of slaughtered pigs. Some persons argue that, because PZP does not kill the mare, it is not really a “pesticide.” Actually, PZP does kill. Stillbirths are associated with the pesticide’s use, meaning that some of its supposed contraceptive effects are actually feticidal.. In addition, over the long term, PZP weakens a herd immunologically, putting it at risk for eventual or even sudden extinction.
- PZP — The Disproved Hypothesis: PZP’s manufacturer promoted the product as generating antibodies that “block sperm attachment.” But that marketing-hype was merely an untested hypothesis postulated three decades ago. Independent researchers found that PZP has a different effect, and many adverse effects.
- PZP — The Actual Mode-of-Action: Behaving like a perverted vaccine, PZP tricks the mare’s immune system into making antibodies that cause ovarian dystrophy, autoimmune oophoritis, ovarian cysts, and premature ovarian failure. PZP quickly sterilizes mares that have a strong immune system but has no effect on those suffering from weak immunity. Thus, PZP both works and doesn’t work but, in the long run, selects for poor immune function. Weak immunity = weak resistance to infection, which could quickly wipe out a herd. PZP also affects the foals. If a mare is pregnant or nursing when darted, PZP antibodies are transferred to her offspring via the placenta and her milk. So, inadvertently, unborn and newborn foals receive a dose or two of the pesticide when their dams are injected.
- PZP — The Danger to Humans: PZP is a powerful endocrine-disruptor. It causes a sharp drop in estrogen levels. Unfortunately, because the manufacturer misrepresented PZP as “so safe it is boring,” volunteer-darters have become lax in following safety-precautions. Accidental self-injection could result in severe adverse effects because the dose-in-question is sized for a horse.
- PZP — The Year-Round Birthing-Season: A longitudinal study (Ransom et al. 2013) of three herds currently under treatment with PZP found that the birthing-season lasts virtually year-round (341 days). Out-of-season births put the life of mares and their foals in jeopardy. Nature designed foals to be born in Spring, not year-round, and certainly not in Winter.
- PZP — Prolonged Delay in Recovery of Fertility: Ransom et al. also found that, after suspension of PZP, it takes more than a year per each year-of-treatment before mares recover their fertility. PZP’s manufacturer conceded that it could take up to 8 years to recover fertility after just 3 consecutive years of PZP treatment.
- PZP — Scientists Say Proceed with Caution: Ransom et al. warned: “The transient nature of … PZP can manifest into extraordinary persistence of infertility with repeated vaccinations, and ultimately can alter birth phenology in horses. This persistence … suggests caution for use in small refugia ….” [small herds of wild horses are impacted the hardest]
- PZP — Contraindicated for Tiny, Isolated Herds: Several years ago, BLM convened a meeting of scientists on the topic of minimum herd-size for genetic fitness. Conclusion: “Smaller, isolated populations (<200 total census size) are particularly vulnerable ….” And that’s without PZP in the mix.
- Slow Herd-Growth: Per independent research, wild-horse herds increase at a rate of only 5% a year; and wild-burro herds, just 2%. Such slow growth does not warrant pesticide treatments administered en masse every year. Eventual sterilization is inevitable, with extinction of the herd over the long term.
- Predators: The right way to right-size the wild-horse population is Nature’s way — predators. But those predators — mountain lions, bears, wolves, and coyotes — are persecuted mercilessly. Wildlife Services exterminates what trophy-hunters don’t shoot. Predators help the herds by favoring survival-of-the-fittest and the best genetic adaptations. Predators are the “no-cost” solution.
You can read the latest published research by Dr. Nunez’ at this website: https://cmvnunez.weebly.com/
Why we must take a stand for the natural sustainable conservation of American wild horses
A quintessential part of being an American, and a voter, and participating in the democratic process of our Constitutional Republic is the process of calling-out and opposing bad policies. In fact, it’s part of our civic duty as Americans.
Unfortunately, there are those underhanded deceptive people who want to subvert that time-honored process that is part of being an American. These people (and spin-doctors) use social media to conflate and confuse the two separate concepts of ad hominem attack with criticizing the flawed policies of various people and organizations.
They do this in an attempt to eliminate or marginalize constructive criticism and truth-based debate by people who are not interested in compromising the highest and best interests of American wild horses and their natural, sustainable conservation.
Ad hominem argument is a personal attack against another person who is the source of an argument, rather than against the argument or policy itself. Essentially, this means that ad hominem arguments are used to attack opposing views indirectly, by attacking the individuals or groups that support certain policies or views.
However, attacking policy or flawed programs of an individual or organization via fact-based criticism is NOT in any way ad hominem attack
Attacking the reckless management policy of the BLM’s helicopter roundups is NOT an ad hominem attack on the BLM or its personnel, no more so than attacking the flawed policy of using genetic molestation via castration and sterilization with PZP on wild horses by some nonprofit organizations.
Importantly, citing or identifying the people and/or nonprofits who are promoting or are the sources of flawed management policies is also not ad hominem attack.
The Propaganda Band-Wagons
In today’s world of high-tech marketing and media manipulation of American ‘mind-share’, large organizations, including some wild horse nonprofit corporations, are using sophisticated psychological methods, sometimes called ‘psy-ops’, to garner supporters and donations. They use many forms of what might be called ‘smoke and mirrors’.
Most often used are carefully crafted emotionally compelling images of horses used to stimulate the desired response, which can also be as a distraction from unfavorable policy or actions. In other words, using pretty pictures and words to cover less than desirable deeds or actions.
In some cases, copyrighters have training in psychology and use that training to convince people into believing what they’re selling, including bad policies. These people are sometimes called ‘spin-doctors’.
They use a host of powerful psychological techniques knowing full well that most American’s are not able to spend the requisite amount of time and due diligence to arrive at the truth of a debate, and instead, just go-along with what sounds good or appear as popular trend.
This is why the big the wild horse nonprofit organizations use celebrities and fancy people who are trendy.
In fact, a recent psychology article stated that:
“People who are obsessed with celebrities tend to score lower on measures of cognitive ability”
Cognitive performance is slightly reduced among those with higher levels of celebrity worship, according to a new study published in BMC Psychology.
“Interest in the topic of celebrity worshipers spans almost two decades. From several studies, over that period, research showed a weak to moderate tendency for those who showed the strongest admiration for their favorite celebrity to have lower cognitive skills, using a variety of cognitive measures,” explained study authors Lynn E. McCutcheon, Ágnes Zsila, and Zsolt Demetrovics in a joint statement to PsyPost.”
However, under close examination, most of the celebrity figures employed by some big nonprofits are not properly educated in the natural-history, biology, behavioral ecology, ethology or genetics as applied to American wild horses. They just accept the script that’s provided to them. Some of these celebrities may even own a horse or have adopted a BLM horse, and use trainers and barn managers to care for their horses.
And there is only so much a person can learn from books or movies made by others who are also getting most of their information in the same manner; second hand. Most large wild horse nonprofit organizations are in that same boat; they garner second-hand information.
Dr. Jane Goodall taught the world a lesson in learning about wildlife.
Jane Goodall was not formally educated in science when Dr. Louis Leakey sent her to Gombe Africa to study the Apes there. Nevertheless, she ultimately became an embedded observer after 3-months, and was the first person to be accepted into the troop of Apes she was studying. This paradigm of being part of a troop in a manner of speaking, allowed her to make new observations and breakthrough discoveries about their behavioral ecology. She didn’t rely on the publications of the scientists who preceded her. She learned directly from the Apes, and that’s where the rubber really met the road.
Wild Horse Ranch – The Research station for Wild Horse Fire Brigade
Here at our research station called ‘Wild Horse Ranch’ in the remote wilderness of the mountains on the Oregon-California, we live-among and study free-roaming native wild horses as embedded observers. We have been accepted into the herd, much in the same manner as experienced by Dr. Goodall. And for the past 9-years, we have been living-among and learning about wild horses, directly from the wild Ones.
John Hutto also experienced the paradigm of being an embedded observer and being accepted into a herd of mule deer.
His experience was documented and is summarized in this short video trailer by the Nature Channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlMDQeKAGYU
We believe that some of our local wild horses are the descendants of the wild horses seen and documented by Sir Francis Drake when he explored our local region in 1580, making the horses Drake observed post Ice Age survivors.
This makes the herd we are studying very special, with some horses displaying epigenetics that are likely a function of older wild horse gene-lines.
This video, shows a little foal called ‘Buffy’ who displays an epigenetic survival trait in her dense bison-like coat that protects her head, her body and joints.
Watch on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNfGdvjmAE0
In fact, in honor of Dr. Goodall, we call our study method paradigm as embedded observers the ‘Goodall Method’.
The Goodall Method has provided our research team (Simpson – Gough) with new insights into the behavioral ecology and ethology of free-roaming wild horses. These insights are critically important in regard to new natural ways for the sustainable conservation of wild horses.
Understanding the Longstanding Debate and the Lack of Progress for Wild Horses
First, we must acknowledge that there are many Americans who are new to the struggle to save native species American wild horses. And this large segment of Americans is vulnerable to propaganda.
Then we have another segment of American’s who have been informed by various government agencies, like the Bureau of Land Management, the United States Forest Service, and by various people and nonprofit organizations such as the pro-PZP organizations American Wild Horse Campaign and the newly formed cluster of nonprofits run by Marty Irby and Wayne Pacelle (formerly of HSUS) and their spokesperson Scott Beckstead. [5, 6]
It’s important to note that both Marty Irby and Wayne Pacelle were insiders at HSUS who helped craft the Path Forward along with co-authors that included the Bureau of Land Management, people and Orgs from the beef industry (‘Beef.org’), stakeholders with commercial public land use agendas (‘Public Lands Council’), and others who have past histories of embracing and employing unnatural, failed methods and policies for managing wildlife and wild horses.
Far too many wild horse advocates today are stuck in the quicksand of the dogma created by the propaganda of these agenda-driven people and organizations, including some wild horse nonprofits, who do not have policies that are in the highest and best interests of wild horses. In fact, some of the people who run some of the nonprofit organizations are arguably financially conflicted due to their profiting personally via their work and are paid handsome salaries from donations made for the horses.
Many of the wild horse orgs/nonprofits that are pro PZP have been incentivized by the BLM who is offering tens of $-millions of dollars in grant money to pay people and organizations for programs that use firearms to shoot wild horses with heavy projectiles filled with a genetic poison. PZP causes genetic decline when used on wild horses, and that is a form of slow death that inhibits the sustainable long-term conservation of wild horses. Donors who are contributing to this genetic folly need to revaluate this dangerous paradigm immediately.
What We Believe – Walking the Talk
What sets us (Wild Horse Fire Brigade) apart from the other nonprofit organizations?
Why would we face the many hardships of living off-grid in a remote mountain wilderness for many years? Are we being paid? Some people might ask, what is our motivation?
The answer is no, we are not paid, we are part of an all-volunteer organization.
We do what we do because we care very deeply about American wild horses and their future in America. And having been accepted into the local herd, we have enjoyed the special friendships that we have made with some of the wild Ones, who are our teachers.
In fact, for the first 7-years of the wild horse wilderness study, I personally capitalized the establishment of the Wild Horse Ranch research station and financed the ongoing research hard costs out of my life savings, committing the entirety of it to this important research.
We believe that preserving the robust nature of wild horse genetics via holistic and natural management methods is by far in the very best interests of preserving and protecting the remaining genetically intact American wild horses. And our organization is the only organization with a plan that can allow American wild horses to resume their natural lives on the American landscape.
As a retired United States Merchant Marine Officer, I have a record with the United States Coast Guard of putting my own life on the line to help save others who found themselves in life-threatening situations. I believe there are things in this life far more important than money, fame or even my own skin.
And with regard to our precious American wild horses, that credo holds true for me and the all-volunteer team at Wild Horse Fire Brigade.
People are welcome to try and judge me and my motivation for what I do and what I write, but in the end, actions, not words are what define someone’s life.
House bill: ‘Veterans For Mustangs Act’ https://www.einnews.com/pr_news/614834024/veterans-for-mustangs-act-proposes-to-make-american-wild-horses-into-carnival-shooting-gallery
Categories: Equine Rescue, Horse News, Horse Slaughter, Wild Burros, Wild Horses/Mustangs
RT – are there no other wild horse advocates worthy or has everyone just stopped caring? Yes, Mr. Simpson’s organization is a good cause – but quite honestly it is NOT the only one that exists.
The roundups are still a really big issue & will remain so even if a few Wild Horses are somehow lucky enough to get turned out into forests to help to prevent fires.
The BLM & the livestock & mining industries are still a huge problem. I’m not a huge advocate of the larger organizations, but there are still some other very good, caring ones.
It just seems as tho for far too many – their fight is with each other & over donations. As it has been for decades!
I just received a letter from the BLM Billings Office regarding Pryor Mountain HMA – a TEN year plan!!
NEPA # DOI-BLM-MT-C010-2020-0004-EA Publishing Date is 3-15-23 so not showing on BLM site today!
“30-day Comment Period on the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range Joint Herd
Management Area Plan (HMAP), Gather Plan, and Billing Field Office RMP
Rather than try and pass a new Wild Horse and Burro Bill considering the habitat options as provided by laws superseding the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act, Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) is a conservation ecology program in the western United States, managed by the Bureau of Land Management. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Area_of_Critical_Environmental_Concern, The ACEC program was conceived in the 1976 Federal Lands Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), which established the first conservation ecology mandate for the BLM. FLPMA supersedes the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act was passed after the Kleppe v New Mexico ruling. IN Kleppe v New Mexico, Justice Thurgood Marshall, representing the court’s unanimous opinion, found the Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act to be Constitutional, and that the Property Clause gave Congress the power to protect wildlife (horses and burros) on the public lands, state law notwithstanding. Isn’t the Fire Brigate plan for additional habitat best facilitated as an ACEC? In addition, FLPMA grandfathered pre-existing land withdrawals, explaining that Withdrawals were Designated Reservations for a specific purpose. Isn’t it true that Herd Areas are the habitat imperative and necessary to the survival of our heritage herds? Because of these provisions in the law, there are ample habitat options to repatriate warehoused horses slated for slaughter. The available habitat that I am suggesting is not in competition with Mining, Ranching or endangered species. It is a very small portion of the US federal government owned 640 million acres of land and about 28% of the nation’s total surface, 2.27 billion acres. Oregon already has wilderness ACEC designations for wildlife.
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