The BLM should not back away from its plan to remove over 1700 wild horses from the Caliente HA Complex, according to an opinion piece that appeared today in the Mesquite Local News.
Plaintiffs consider wild horses to be “…more important than the livelihoods of ranchers who graze 4,500 head of cattle and sheep in the area.” That the animals were placed on lands set aside by Congress for wild horses and burros seems to have been overlooked by the writer.
The editorial contains several elements from the wild horse narrative and lays most of the blame for rangeland degradation at the feet of the horses.
Herd areas, like herd management areas, include lands where horses and burros were found when the WHB Act was signed into law (go to the 8:30 mark in this video). Over the years BLM has argued that herd areas don’t have the resources to sustain horses and burros. If that’s true, why are they planning a gather in the Caliente complex? There’s nothing to remove.
And if the land is too harsh for horses and burros, it must be unfit for cattle and sheep?
If the land is suitable for cattle and sheep, it’s suitable for horses and burros, who take priority over the livestock because of the WHB Act.