Neda DeMayo (Pres. & Founder) and Cory Golden (Advocacy Coordinator) of Return to Freedom, to tell you about the action needed to save tens of thousands of wild horses & burros from slaughter, Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., 6/28/17)

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Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, June 28, 2017

5:00 pm PST … 6:00 pm MST … 7:00 pm CST … 8:00 pm EST

Listen Live (HERE!)

You can also listen to the show on your phone by calling (917) 388-4520.

You can call in with questions during the 2nd half hour, by dialing (917) 388-4520, then pressing 1.

This show will be archived so you can listen to it anytime.

In honor of Mystic, one of the first stallions to arrive at Return to Freedom in 1999. He was captured during the total removal of 279 horses from Hart Mountain-Fish and Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. Est. DOB 1984 – Captured 1998- died October 31 2014

Our guests today are Neda DeMayo, Founder and President, and Cory Golden, Advocacy & Communications Director, of Return to Freedom, dedicated to preserving the freedom, diversity and habitat of America’s wild horses through sanctuary, education, advocacy and conservation.

Tonight our guests will talk about the need for ALL of us to urge Congress to stand against a presidential budget proposal that threatens the lives of tens of thousands of horses.

The president’s budget would slash the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program budget by 12%, about $9.7 million. The majority of the program’s budget goes to warehouse some 47,000 captured wild horses and burros living in short and long term government holding facilities.

The budget would cut those costs by allowing the BLM “to conduct sales without limitation,” eliminating the current policy of captured wild horses and burros being offered for sale without limitation when they reach 10 years of age or fail to be adopted three times. Many sold would likely fall into the hands of kill buyers.

Neda DeMayo, Founder and President of Return to Freedom

This show will be hosted by Debbie Coffey, V.P. and Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

To contact us: ppj1@hush.com, or call 320-281-0585

TO LISTEN TO ALL ARCHIVED WILD HORSE & BURRO RADIO SHOWS, CLICK HERE.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/marti-oakley/2017/06/29/neda-demayo-founder-amp-pres-cory-golden-advocacy-of-return-to-freedom

1/8/17 – Carol Walker, Dir. of Field Documentation for Wild Horse Freedom Federation on BLM’s dangerous Radio Collar Study on the Adobe Town wild horses in Wyoming. Listen HERE.

2/15/17 – Marjorie Farabee, Dir. of Wild Burro Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation and donkey advocate David Duncan (Donkey Rescue World), talk about the killing of the world’s donkeys for ejiao. Listen HERE.

3/8/17 – Marjorie Farabee, Dir. of Wild Burro Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation and Australian donkey advocate Andrea Jenkins, a member of Good Samaritan Donkey Sanctuary, on the ejiao issue in Australia. Listen HERE.

4/12/17 – Dawn Vincent, Head of Communications for The Donkey Sanctuary UK, and Marjorie Farabee, Dir. of Wild Burro Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation. In January 2017, The Donkey Sanctuary (UK) issued a report titled “Under the Skin,” about the global demand for donkey skins used to produce a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) called ejiao. Listen HERE.

5/24/17 – ELAINE NASH, Founder and Dir. of Fleet of Angels, and Palomino Armstrong, founder of CHILLY PEPPER – MIRACLE MUSTANG, on the logistics of the rescue of the ISPMB horses and about the many wild horses that still need to be adopted. Listen HERE.

6/14/27 – Nancy Turner, Pres. of This Old Horse, a Minnesota nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide sanctuary to retired, rescued, and recovering horses, and Elaine Nash, Founder and Dir. of Fleet of Angels, a not-for-profit organization offering crisis management and transportation assistance during equine-related emergencies, talk about the ISPMB horses that still need to be adopted. Listen HERE.

6/21/17 – Bonnie Gestring, Northwest Circuit Rider for Earthworks, on contamination of U.S. waters in perpetuity, caused by mining. Bonnie is co-author of the report Polluting the Future: How mining companies are polluting our nation’s waters in perpetuity. Listen HERE.

Journalists are in love with cowboys, and so wild horses will die.

Source:  Vickeryeckhoff.com

Ryan Zinke, U.S. Secretary of the Interior

by Vickery Eckhoff

I’ve made a subspecialty out of writing to journalists about wild horses and, more importantly, cattle.

Below is a letter I wrote to Matthew Shaer of Smithsonian, whose May 2017 article, “How the Mustang, the Symbol of the Frontier, Became a Nuisance,”  is typical of how journalists cover wild horses. It is also typical of what senators can expect to hear today, June 21, when U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke testifies before the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee in support of the Trump budget plan, which will lift Congress’ ban on removing protections for wild horses and burros and selling them for slaughter.

This is not journalism that speaks truth to power. My solution is to speak truth to journalism. Here’s my letter, dated May 5, 2017:

Dear Mr. Shaer,

I read your Smithsonian article, “How the Mustang, the Symbol of the Frontier, Became a Nuisance,” with interest. I have been writing about wild horse politics and roundups, as well as the livestock and slaughter industry and the related topic of subsidized public lands ranching since 2011 (for Forbes, AlterNet, Salon, Newsweek, HuffPo and my own web site, The Daily Pitchfork).

And I have to disagree completely with your article’s (and your sources’) claim of too many wild horses “eating ranchers out of house and home” and causing long-term damage to rangeland…

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE HERE.

Wild Horses Heading For Extinction: The Bureau Of Land Management And The Facts

as published Western Journalism

“Any person or any agency who says that wild horses are not native to North America is just uneducated…”

First of all, let’s set the record straight:

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Wild horses are an American native species, according to Ross MacPhee, Ph.D., Curator of the Division of Vertebrate Zoology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Given this man’s impeccable credentials and experience, his findings are beyond reproach or debate.

Here is an article by Dr. MacPhee that is crystal-clear: Wild horses are native to America.

This finding is also shared by many other highly credible scientists, including Dr. Jay F. Kirkpatrick.

Any person or any agency who says that wild horses are not native to North America is just uneducated, misinformed or intentionally lying for some reason, usually motivated by greed, mindlessly repeating hearsay or following rank-and-file orders, as is the case with some people at the Bureau of Land Management.

The BLM is at great risk of seriously and irreversibly damaging its reputation across the board, rightly and permanently earning the overall mistrust of Americans by sticking with the lie that wild horses are not native to America. It is just a flat-out lie.

Americans are sick and tired of government agencies lying to them, and that in part was what propelled Donald J. Trump to the presidency. It’s sad that some good people who work at the BLM are tainted by association and because in some cases they are not resisting what they know is wrong, because of job security and retribution issues at the BLM.

But the real question on a personal level is what is more important: honor and integrity, or money? Money comes and goes, while honor and integrity are not fungible assets.

Is there malfeasance at the BLM? Here is just a small sampling of easily-discovered examples online:

Malfeasance, malfeasance, malfeasance, malfeasance and more malfeasance.

Making matters worse is that some managers of national monument lands, some of which land is the ancient native habitat for some small herds of symbiotic wild horses, have adopted the policy of excluding wild horses from monument lands, using the defective reasoning and excuse that wild horses are not a native species (the lie).

Given all that is at stake, including the health of the ecosystems, I believe this is a most unwise policy. And when you lose the trust of the American people, it’s just a matter of time before that house of cards falls in on itself.

Because wild horses co-evolved in North America over the millennia, many complex symbiotic mutualisms evolved between horses and many species of plants and animals on the plains and in our forests as a result of the horse’s presence in those ecosystems in North America and elsewhere.

And make no mistake, even though some people get carried away with environmental obsessions, I don’t believe that I can legitimately be accused of such, given my published stance on intelligent (as opposed to emotional) public-land management and use, including the harvesting of game animals, predator control, and proper management of wild horses through range design and fair-handed land allocations, sticking to the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.

It’s shocking that our Congress set aside over 50 million acres on the basis of scientific recommendations, cogent animal management experience and, most importantly, the will of the American people, only later to have an overlord at the BLM unilaterally roll back the land allocation under the Act to just over 30 million acres, taking roughly 20 million for their own purposes. Theft? Malfeasance?

Congress enacted the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act in 1971, an Act of Congress expressing the will of the majority of the American people that these animals be preserved. But we seem to have a serious problem related to some power-hungry overlords running this agency fiefdom known as the BLM.

So when Obama expanded the monuments in America, I stood against that expansion (in many places) because in addition to the abuse of the Antiquities Act, it also expanded unreasonable exclusion areas for our American wild horses because of the false claim by the BLM that the wild horse is not native. Now, in addition to the horses being squeezed out of their federally-designated lands by the BLM, the monument lands are also off-limits.

So now, thanks to Obama, the exclusion areas for native wild horses include many niche habitats where the animals are critically important to the health of the forests and watersheds. I have expounded further on that in an article you can read here.

Due to excessive fuel loading of ungrazed wild grasses and shrubs — things horses eat — the removal of wild horses, the loss of deer populations through predator mismanagement, and reckless forest management practices, over a million acres of our forests in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere have been burning to the dirt on nearly an annual basis. Much of the wildfire danger stems from abundant dry grasses and could be abated simply by allowing the wild horses back where they belong. It is logical and most reasonable that a portion of grasses be grazed by native mammals, including wild horses.

In other words, the BLM is driving our American native wild horses and burros into extinction by eliminating access to all of their traditional American habitats that extend back through the millennia.

More clues as to the lies of the BLM:

There are horse fossils from past millennia right here in America, in Oregon and other states. There are horse fossils on the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. And even an amateur geologist knows that it takes thousands of years for fossils to form. This means that the horse fossils found in the American landscape are from the horses that evolved right here in America centuries before the Vikings and Spanish explorers arrived on the shores of the North American continent. So the entire fairy tale being promoted by the BLM, U.S. Forestry Service and others about horses being “introduced” onto the North American continent is just a load of cow dung that’s stinking up what should be a more honest debate about government malfeasance and mismanagement of public lands and animals.

If the BLM continues in its malfeasance and in its programs of misinformation aimed at the American people, the people will have to take the BLM to task in courts around the country and in the court of public opinion via mass media.

And furthermore, people should start evaluating litigation against administrators personally when they lose their immunity as a result of any breach of their fiduciary duty to the public trust.

And when the BLM wants anything from the American people in the future, whatever it is, maybe the answer to them must be a “no,” at least or until the BLM changes its ways and drops the criminal levels of malfeasance. If some of the administrators of the BLM and Forestry Service were subject to the laws imposed upon administrators in the private sector of business, like the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, many more of them would be in jail for malfeasance.

The BLM has already done enough damage to the public lands and to the animals with whose management it is entrusted. It’s time for the citizens of America to step in and get this fixed. We need to be more than a squeaky wheel; we need to be heard all the way to President Trump’s office!

The Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 protected the wild horses and burros so Americans (that’s us and apparently not them) would have the opportunity to enjoy them, so a critical part of our American heritage and living history was safe and protected and could be also enjoyed by our future generations. Now we are the aggrieved party in that this promised benefit to Americans by the government is not being honored. There are legal claims that can be made as a class, and also other civil and criminal actions that can be pursued via our courts. We also need to press our legislators for more penalties to deal with agencies and administrators who violate the public trust with acts of dishonesty and malfeasance.

It’s a darn shame when Americans have no choice except to sue their own government in order to get it to do what it already knows it should be doing.

Truly sad!

If John Wayne were alive today, he’d have a bone to pick with the BLM …

http://www.westernjournalism.com/wild-horses-heading-for-extinction-the-bureau-of-land-management-and-the-facts/

http://www.westernjournalism.com/wild-horses-heading-for-extinction-the-bureau-of-land-management-and-the-facts/

Wild Horse & Burro Haters Plan Conspiracy Convention

Unedited story by of the Deseret News
Forward by R.T. Fitch, President/co-founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“Propaganda, Fake Facts and Bad Science will be the Central Focus…”

“They’re baaaaackkkkk!!!

Thought they were gone with “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis moldering in her grave and Dave “Doink” Douquette floundering in disgraced disarray? 

Nope; an entire new breed of equine hating, cattle promoting deviants are coming together to show their collective asses for three days in Utah this coming August.

Granted, there is no mention of slaughter in the initial agenda, but we all know where the direction of the discussion is going and the veiled intent of their “Convention”…but the fake facts and exaggerated  numbers point to mainstream media getting sucked into the buzz of wild horse overpopulation while welfare cattle outnumber the horses & burros 10 to 1 AND the equines are protected; the walking bovine bulldozers are not.

It is my opinion that all honest, enlightened and educated U.S. taxpayers should show up at the convention in droves and speak, peaceably, for the horses and burros who cannot speak for themselves.

We at SFTHH and Wild Horse Freedom Federation will keep you abreast of any information regarding this Fake Fact Fest and will endeavor to assist in countering the misrepresentation of reality which is already being projected well before the convention takes place.

As with the battle against the lies perpetuated by dead Sue Wallis and company; the truth shall prevail and those who speak it will walk in grace and have peace in their hearts.

Keep the faith.” ~ R.T.


National wild horse forum planned in Utah; Zinke may attend

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s wildland managers say they plan to take a half-million dollars given to them by state lawmakers to put on a national wild horse forum to address the animal’s explosive population growth, plus use the money to carry out rangeland restoration projects.

The forum, set for three days in August, will seek solutions to tackle the wild horse numbers — now in Utah at more than twice the Bureau of Land Management‘s targeted levels — and the hope is that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will accept the invitation to attend.

Nationally, there are 73,000 wild horses roaming in Western states on federal lands managed by the BLM. The targeted management level is 27,000.

An estimated 45,000 animals are in long-term holding pens at an annual cost of $50 million, or the equivalent of the nation’s wildfire fighting budget in an active fire season, said Mike Styler, executive director of the Utah Department of Natural Resources.

Styler briefed members of the Legislature’s Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Interim Committee on Wednesday, detailing the challenges Utah and other states face when it comes to the animals.

In the last legislative session, Utah lawmakers gave his department $500,000 to manage wild horses and burros, but his agency lacks the regulatory oversight.

Some of that money will go toward the Aug. 22-24 forum to look at the science behind the problem and potential solutions, while the majority will be used in watershed and rangeland restoration efforts to help land impacted by the animals.

Ben Nadolski, the state department’s legislative liaison, said the agency will be able to take legislative appropriation and leverage it to bring in additional funds for eight projects scattered throughout the state.

Agencies sifted through needed restoration projects and settled on that list that comes with a $2.4 million price tag to treat more than 15,000 acres of rangeland in the state, he said.

Some of that work includes fencing off school trust lands property denuded of vegetation or removing pinion and juniper through a variety of methods.

Utah and its rural county leaders have been ramping up the pressure on the BLM to control the wild horse population in the state, which is at 5,215 wild horses and 313 burros as of March. The targeted level by the BLM is 1,956 animals.

They have some hope due to Zinke’s newly unveiled budget for the Interior Department, which proposes to remove language that constrains the federal agency from using “management tools,” that could include eliminating restrictions on shipping the horses to slaughterhouses or euthanasia.

But Scott Beckstead, the rural outreach director for the Humane Society of the United States, said the only publicly acceptable way to combat the problem of too many horses is with birth control.

“Any proposal that includes sending these horses to slaughter for human consumption is going to be a nonstarter for the American public,” he stressed, emphasizing that 80 percent of Americans don’t want to see horses hanging from meat hooks in French butcher shops.

“The outcry will be massive,” he said.

Horsemeat is considered a delicacy in France and other parts of Europe.

Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Provo, took offense at his words.

“I didn’t hear anything about slaughter” in the committee’s discussion, she said. “I guess that was just for a talking point. … We are concerned about the numbers that are being slaughtered (slaughter means to butcher for meat you twit – R.T.) by overgrazing and lack of food. And that is a slow death, not a fast death.”

Beckstead countered that any discussion that turns on broadening the “management tools” for wild horses implies slaughter or euthanasia as an answer, when politicians and land managers should be looking at the number of privately owned cattle on public land.

In Utah, he pointed out, there are 22 million acres set aside for cattle for forage, while wild horses graze on 2 million acres.

Rep. Derrin Owens, R-Fountain Green, criticized Beckstead’s comments on how Americans feel regarding the ways to manage wild horse populations.

“I don’t know where you get the authority to speak on behalf of all the American people,” he said. “I resent that. You don’t have the authority to speak for all American people.”

Silence on Trump-Zinke Budget Plan Could Doom Wild Horses & Burros

Message from Return to Freedom Wild Horse Conservation

“Supporters of wild horses ought to contact their representatives right now…”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Return to Freedom Wild Horse Conservation on Wednesday urged supporters of America’s iconic wild horses and burros to speak out on their behalf, and for Congress to stand against a presidential budget proposal that threatens the lives of tens of thousands of horses.

“Now is the time for our representatives to ask tough questions and demand a humane, sustainable on-the-range management plan for wild horses — rather than be left to explain their votes later, after healthy horses are shipped to slaughter or shot at taxpayer expense,” said Neda DeMayo, president of Return to Freedom.

“Likewise, supporters of wild horses ought to contact their representatives right now – not after such deadly provisions become law. Pick up a pen or the phone and make sure that Washington hears you, loud and clear, over the whispers of industry lobbyists.”

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke took questions from the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on Tuesday and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior on Wednesday. In nearly five hours of testimony, wild horse management received only fleeting mentions and Zinke’s prepared statement shed no new light on the administration’s plans.

The president’s budget would slash the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program budget by 12%, about $9.7 million. The majority of the program’s budget goes to warehouse some 47,000 captured wild horses and burros living in short- and long-term government holding facilities.

The budget would cut those costs by allowing the BLM “to conduct sales without limitation,” eliminating the current policy of captured wild horses and burros being offered for sale without limitation when they reach 10 years of age or fail to be adopted three times. Many sold would likely fall into the hands of kill buyers.

The budget would also remove “language restricting BLM’s ability to use all of the management tools authorized in the 1971 [Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros] Act,” scrapping Congress’s prohibitions in previous appropriations bills that barred BLM from shooting healthy animals.

As part of the president’s focus on “all-of-the-above” energy production, Zinke repeatedly returned to the subject of a $15.5 billion drop in his department’s revenues and said that some of the $1.6 billion in proposed cuts could be lessened if revenues increase.

Zinke took a variety of questions about specific areas of concerns in the senators’ states, an ongoing review of national monuments, a large-scale reassignment of department employees, tribal issues and climate change. He defended an 84 percent cut of Interior’s Land and Water Conservation program by saying the country ought not buy more land but instead take better care of what it had.

So far, Zinke has shown little interest in humane management alternatives for wild horses.

Testifying about the budget before the Speaking House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior earlier this month, Zinke said that “the birth control part of the (Wild Horse) Program has been, by and large, a failure” – this despite BLM spending just $340,000 on fertility control in 2016 compared to $52.49 million on capturing and warehousing horses off the range, for example.

A 2013 National Academy of Sciences report identified fertility control as an effective tool for managing the wild horse population while blaming BLM’s system of capture and removal for promoting population growth. An economic model published that same year in the peer-reviewed Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine found that the BLM could attain its management goals within 12 years by using fertility control.

In 2008, BLM was very close to achieving their desired population target and still they did not implement an effective fertility control program that has proven 91-98% successful in various programs.

Return to Freedom and other advocates have long called for redirecting money spent on capturing and holding wild horses toward available solutions that do not include the needless slaughter of healthy equines promised our protection.

These include not only using safe, proven fertility control but revisiting population targets, based on a fair interpretation of multiple-use land management; providing incentives for ranchers who reduce livestock grazing in wild horse Herd Management Areas; increasing range stewardship, including much-needed water source restoration; and relocating horses, but only if truly necessary.

Shooting healthy wild horses at taxpayer expense or selling them out the back door, where they wind up slaughtered in Canada or Mexico, would contradict the will of Congress and the American people.

The recently passed bipartisan omnibus bill defunded horse slaughter plant inspections and explicitly prohibits BLM from euthanizing healthy wild horses or selling horses in a way that results in their destruction. Since January 139 House members have also signed on as co-sponsors of the bipartisan HR 113 (Buchanan), dubbed the SAFE Act, which would permanently ban commercial horse slaughter or the transport of horses to slaughter.

The American people have repeatedly supported protections for wild horses and burros, dating to the public outcry that led the unanimous passage of the Wild Horse and Burro Act in 1971. Since then, taxpayers have invested tens of millions of dollars in the protection of wild horses on the range and after capture. A 2012 ASPCA poll found 80% of Americans opposed horse slaughter.

Take action: Send a letter to Congress!

The High Cost of Cheap Grazing on Public Land

 

Private “Welfare Cattle” being herded onto BLM Antelope Complex in Nevada, while Wild Horse roundup was being conducted ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

by Andy Kerr, Public Lands Blog

“Bovine bulldozers have caused more harm to the public lands than mining or logging…”

It costs more to feed a domestic house cat than to graze domestic livestock on federal public lands.

This has generally been the case since the early 1900s, when the federal government first required ranchers to pay a fee for grazing their livestock on millions of acres of federal land, primarily in western states.

Each January the USDA Forest Service and the USDI Bureau of Land Management calculate what the federal grazing fee will be for that year. For 2017, it’s $1.87/animal unit month (AUM), down from $2.11/AUM in 2016. An AUM is the amount of forage that a cow and calf can eat in one month. This below-market subsidized federal grazing fee applies only to the eleven western states. Fees for grazing on National Forest System lands in the Midwest and East are closer to market value.

The federal land management agencies calculate the fee based on an arcane formula that favors the federal grazing permittee at the expense of the federal taxpayer. The formula was in the Public Rangelands Improvement (sic) Act of 1978 (PRIA). That statute expired in 1985, but on Valentines Day in 1986 President Reagan issued an executive order that made the formula live on. The PRIA formula considers current private land grazing lease rates (though obviously not that much, as we shall see), beef cattle prices, and the cost of livestock production, all indexes compiled by the USDA. Because these indexes as used in the grazing fee formula could result in the grazing fee approaching $0/AUM, a floor of $1.35/AUM was included to prevent such an acute embarrassment.

While some argue that grazing uses federal land productively and that the grazing fee is fair, others argue that grazing damages public resources and that grazing fees are too low. When the Government Accountability Office looked into the matter in 2005, it found that the federal government recovered in fees less than one-sixth of what it expended on public lands grazing. And the Center for Biological Diversity estimated that in 2013 on average, the federal grazing fee was 6.72 percent of the price of non-irrigated forage from private lands.

In every state, the gap between the federal grazing fee and market prices for private land forage is stark and getting worse each year. We know this because each January, the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) publishes its estimate of private non-irrigated grazing fees for the previous year (see Figure 1). For instance, in Oregon in 2015, the private grazing fee was estimated to be $16.50/AUM, and in 2016, $17.00/AUM.

Welfare Cows eat more of your wallet and Wild Horse & Burro Habitat

Welfare ranchers (a.k.a. federal grazing permittees) argue that it’s unfair to compare the federal grazing fee with the NASS fees and assert that the PRIA formula does approximate fair market value. They argue that on private lands, certain bovine amenities such as trough water and fences are routinely provided by the private landowner. In contrast, they say, they may have to haul their own water to federal lands, and livestock on the federal lands are more at risk of being eaten by wolves, bears, cougars, coyotes, and the like. (Hell, predators have to eat, don’t they?).

Does the PRIA formula in fact approximate fair market value? According to Wikipedia, fair market value (FMV) is “an estimate of the market value of a property, based on what a knowledgeable, willing, and unpressured buyer would probably pay to a knowledgeable, willing, and unpressured seller in the market.” Grazing fees don’t represent the fair market value of the forage because the federal land management agencies are pressured sellers—Congress requires the federal government to lose money on the endeavor.

The best way to determine the fair market value of federal grazing permits would be to auction them in a fair market. However, federal law limits federal grazing permits and leases to those in the livestock business, and there is no bidding among them. Once federal grazing permittees obtain their federal permit, either by inheritance or purchase, it’s generally theirs until they die or sell it.

Ensuring that the federal government received fair market value for the grazing of livestock would help defray the federal deficit, but do little to help public lands. Alas, most permittees would pay the higher fee (though griping a lot), as the cost of federal forage isn’t a particularly large portion of the cost of a ranch operation.

Bovine bulldozers have caused more harm to the public lands than mining or logging. The damage is harder for the public to see, as livestock grazing has been a chronic assault on the environment since the mid-1800s, rather than the acute assault of a clear-cut or a strip mine.

My honest opinion? The only proper grazing fee for federal public lands is actually $0/AUM, since there should be no grazing on federal public lands.

The USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service estimate of private non-irrigated grazing fees for 2015 and 2016.

[To learn more, see Grazing Fees: Overview and Issues by the Congressional Research Service. To learn way more, see Cost and Consequences: The Real Price of Livestock Grazing on America’s Public Lands by the Center for Biological Diversity.]

http://www.andykerr.net/kerr-public-lands-blog/2017/5/26/the-high-cost-of-cheap-grazing

Feel Good ‘Father’s Day’ Sunday: Wild Burro Dads of the Black Mountains

By Carl Mrozek

“In honor of Dads everywhere, CBS Sunday Morning will feature wild burro jacks shepherding their family bands in the Black Mountains of Arizona, where I filmed them this spring. The nature segment is the last one of this magazine-style program.

Enjoy the burro clip and the wild world around you !”

Click Image to view video

“Also, I would like to include the Mom’s Day video: Mustangs  of the Music Mountains featured on on CBS Sunday Morning on Mom’s Day: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/ nature-horses/

for a belated Happy Mom’s Day to all moms !”

Call to Action: Wild Horses and Burros Need Your Voice NOW

Open letter by Grandma Gregg

There is no time to waste! Please feel free to use the sample letter below and using the form (link below) send your own message to the US House of Representatives, Committee on Appropriations.” ~ Grandma Gregg

https://appropriations.house.gov/contact/contactform.htm


photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“Do not allow the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), United States Forest Service (USFS), Farm Bureau and the extraction and mining giants and the domestic livestock grazing associations to pull the wool over your eyes. There are no excess wild horses and burros on their legally designated land. Per the unanimously passed United States 1971 Congressional Wild Horse and Burro Act, the land is to be devoted principally although not exclusively to the wild horses and wild burros’ welfare in keeping with the multiple-use management concept of public lands.

The recent National Academy of Sciences study found NO evidence of overpopulation of Wild Horses and Wild Burros. Obviously, the government’s actions toward the wild horses and burros needs to be closely and independently investigated and the animals left on their legally designated land and those already captured must be returned to their legal lands. The American people and members of Congress are being lied to by our government agencies that are mandated by Congressional Law to protect these animals. Our government agencies (BLM and USFS) are truly managing our wild horses and wild burros toward extinction.

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. In 1971, when Congress passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, these animals were found roaming across 53,800,000 million acres. That amount of acreage could support more than about 250,000 wild horses and burros but even after 22,200,000 acres were robbed from the American people and the wild horses and burros by government agencies the remaining 31,600,000 acres could easily support more than 100,000 wild horses and burros today. It is currently independently estimated that only about 20,000 – 30,000 wild horses and burros are living on their legal land today and yet the government continues its aggressive removal and destructive management toward total wild horse and burro extermination.

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.

https://www.blm.gov/

Since Congress is concerned with the cost of long-term holding of wild horses and burros, and our public lands, please allow me to remind you that these wild horses and burros already have legal lands in the wild for them to live on which cost the tax-payer nothing. In contrast, private/corporate livestock grazing on public lands has cost the taxpayers $1 Billion over past decade. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has reported the federal government spends at least $144 million each year managing private livestock grazing on federal public lands, but collects only $21 million in grazing fees—for a net LOSS of at least $123 million per year.

https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2015/grazing-01-28-2015.html

http://www.taxpayer.net/user_uploads/file/factsheet_Grazing_Fiscal_Costs(3).pdf

 As an environmental researcher, United States citizen and taxpayer concerned with the fate of the North-American wild horses and wild burros, I urge you to not be taken in by the biased testimony you recently heard from anti-wild horse/burro Utah Representative Chris Stewart.

The testimony of Secretary of Interior Zinke was clearly a deliberate attempt to con and to deceive in order to further the extremely unfair and dishonest victimization of our nations overly reduced, overly restricted, American wild horses and burros. The testimony was not at all scientifically supportable and therefore not at all credible and must be stricken from public record and true, scientifically supportable testimony must be given to Congress.

These wild animals are being illegally deprived of their legal habitats and resources within their lawfully declared areas on the public lands; both BLM and US Forest Service. This is being done to gratify and indulge the contemptible and domineering demands of many public lands ranchers, including both cattle and sheep, as well as to other wild-horse/burro-enemies, such as certain big game hunters, land developers, giant mining and energy extraction corporations, and others who have been taken in by all the disinformation provided to them by the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service.

What we have now is a very illegal and corrupt wild horse and wild burro program managed by the BLM and USFS that dishonors the wild horse and wild burro heritage and natural place in America. This is contemptuous of the true and core intent of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act and of Congress itself, which unanimously passed this law of the United States. For decades, wild horses and burros have been protected by a ban on the slaughter of healthy animals or any sale that “results in their destruction for processing into commercial products.”  The current 2018 budget proposal would allow “euthanasia and unrestricted sale of certain excess animals.” If this does pass, it will cause thousands of innocent wild horses and burros that belong on their Congressionally designated lands to be slaughtered. These wild horses and wild burros belong to me and to all American citizens and by Congressional law MUST be protected.”

BLM Plotting War on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

By Wayne Pacelle as posted on Humane Nation

“Turning to mass slaughter would mark a U-turn on the government’s response to wild horse management programs…”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

The Department of the Interior, under the leadership of Secretary Ryan Zinke, has signaled its intention to strip decades-old federal protections for wild horses and burros and to allow them to be shipped to slaughter by the tens of thousands. Public comments and Congressional testimony from Zinke and other high-ranking government officials represents the most severe threat to wild horses since the ghastly and cruel killing practices of the 1960s prompted Congress to adopt the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.

Turning to mass slaughter would mark a U-turn on the government’s response to wild horse management programs. It was only in April that Congress passed a spending bill with sensible wild horse provisions for the remainder of 2017. That bill included language preventing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and its contractors from sending wild horses to slaughter for human consumption. It further directed the BLM to create a plan to maintain long-term, sustainable populations on the range in a humane manner.

Now, just two months after President Trump signed the 2017 Omnibus spending bill into law, the Department of the Interior is saying it is going to default to slaughter because it’s possessed with no other options. In the president’s budget request for 2018, the department has asked for the ability to maintain wild horse and burro populations at dramatically reduced levels and to get there by slaughtering the animals.

While there are always going to be major challenges in managing wild horses and burros on our western public lands and in satisfying the diverse stakeholders in the debate, there are certain options that should never even be considered because they are simply outside the bounds of how animals should be treated. Mass slaughter is one of those dreadful ideas, an action that flies in the face of the now longstanding prohibition on slaughter and of the instincts of millions of Americans to protect these magnificent symbols of the American West.

The BLM has never been exemplary at managing horses. Far from it. For 20 years, the agency’s primary strategy for wild horse and burro populations has largely consisted of rounding up and removing the animals from our public lands – an effort that has resulted in tens of thousands of wild horses and burros being kept in holding facilities at a cost now approaching $50 million a year — more than half of the BLM’s annual budget for the entire wild horse and burro program. Partly because the costs of caring for so many captive horses are undermining the larger program, the agency has failed to commit any additional money to implement sufficient fertility control programs, which have been long recommended by The HSUS and the National Academies of Sciences.

The aggressive and widespread use of fertility control is the only way to confront this crisis in the long term. The horses need to be managed, but in a humane manner. Fertility control works, but only if there’s a serious investment in the enterprise on the ground. By preventing the birth of foals, the agency will find itself under less pressure to round up so many horses. Fewer round-ups mean substantial cost savings, since not as many animals need to be pastured and fed in short-term and long-term holding facilities. A capture-and-kill strategy, on the other hand, will only make matters worse, because it will cause the horses to compensate by reproducing at a higher rate on the range.

We cannot readily resolve the politics of managing the captive and free-roaming wild horse populations without a struggle. It won’t be easy to get a handle on this. But one thing is for sure: sanctioning the slaughter of tens of thousands of horses is a disgraceful, shameful idea. It is an unacceptable idea that will produce protests in the streets, from Reno to Washington, D.C. Mass slaughter will happen only over the cries, protests, and interventions of the American people.

Tell Secretary Zinke that you do not support the slaughter of America’s wild horses, by calling 202-208-7351.

Nancy Turner (Pres., This Old Horse) and Elaine Nash (Dir., Fleet of Angels) on adopting the remaining ISPMB horses, on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., 6/14/17)

painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, June 14, 2017

7:00 pm PST … 8:00 pm MST … 9:00 pm CST … 10:00 pm EST

Listen To the archived show (HERE!)

You can also listen to the show on your phone by calling (917) 388-4520.

You can call in with questions during the 2nd half hour, by dialing (917) 388-4520, then pressing 1.

This show will be archived so you can listen to it anytime.

Black stallion

Our guests tonight will be Nancy Turner, President of This Old Horse, a Minnesota volunteer-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide sanctuary to retired, rescued, and recovering horses, and Elaine Nash, Founder and Director of Fleet of Angels, a not-for-profit organization with thousands of on-call members across the US and Canada who offer crisis management and transportation assistance during equine-related emergencies, as well as other services.

Nancy and Elaine will talk about the many ISPMB horses that still need to be adopted (as soon as possible). These horses are good looking, smart, and willing. Please help us find homes for them.

To learn more about how you can adopt or help: Wild Horse & Burro Sanctuary Alliance.

This show will be hosted by Debbie Coffey, V.P. and Dir. of Wild Horse Affairs for Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

To contact us: ppj1@hush.com, or call 320-281-0585

TO LISTEN TO ALL ARCHIVED WILD HORSE & BURRO RADIO SHOWS, CLICK HERE. Continue reading