Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Should BLM euthanize wild horses? Advisory panel says yes

The Bureau of Land Management's decision last week to cancel a research project testing surgical sterilization methods for wild mares has once again ignited a fierce debate over how best to deal with growing herds of wild horses and burros that critics say are damaging Western rangelands. BLM announced Friday it was canceling the research partnership with Oregon State University to study the "safety and effectiveness" of three fertility control methods on wild mares in the face of several federal lawsuits from wild horse advocate groups. Those groups challenged the research as "inhumane". Now BLM's National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board is recommending the agency take aggressive steps to sell the more than 40,000 wild horses it has rounded up and is caring for in corrals — and euthanize those horses it cannot sell or adopt. The advisory board's resolution approved at a meeting Friday in Elko, Nev., says BLM should take aggressive steps to comply with the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 "by offering all suitable animals in long- and short-term holding being unadoptable for sale without limitation or humane euthanasia." "Those animals deemed unsuitable for sale," the resolution states, "should then be destroyed in the most humane manner possible." The proposal has sparked heated debate on both sides of the issue. But there are currently an estimated 67,027 wild horses and burros on federal rangeland — nearly three times the 26,715 horses and burros that BLM says the rangelands can sustain. The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act requires BLM to remove the excess 40,312 wild horses and burros in order to protect native wildlife and other rangeland resources. But the agency is already holding more than 46,000 horses and burros in off-range corrals and pastures, and it does not have the resources to round up and hold all the excess animals. Nor does it have the resources to care for the 46,000 horses and burros over the life of the animals, the agency says...more


Anonymous said...

Too little - too late

drjohn said...

but don't waste the meat one 1000 pound horse will yield 800 pounds of edible safe meat. this translates into 3200 cans of mustang stew with 1/4 pound of meat and vegetables highly nutritious and then multiply this by 50,000 horses. then we can feed the hungry in our country and then the starving babies elsewhere. not to little or not to late if congress okays it