The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has released a plan to remove at least 19,000 wild horses and burros from taxpayer-funded public lands in Fiscal Year 2022 (which ends Sept 30). They’ve also indicated an intention to have 2,300 wild horses and burros treated with various types of population control methods.
In Fiscal Year 2021, the BLM rounded up over 13,600 wild horses and burros from public lands and used fertility control on over 1,100 of the equines. It was estimated that approximately 86,000 horses lived on BLM-managed public lands in the spring of 2021.
Removals are not only costly, but both short- and long-term holding facilities are overcrowded and a dead-end solution when on-the-range management methods are available. There are more than 58,000 captive wild horses and burros in off-range government facilities.
The BLM has numerous safe, effective, and humane ways to properly manage wild horses and burros on public lands and needs to amend its Wild Horse and Burro program to stop its “manage to extinction” policy. The 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act needs to be adhered to instead of catering (for decades) to powerful, wealthy special interests who want horses removed forever.