PZP Is Not the Answer!

Public-lands ranchers can access six times as much acreage and twelve times as much forage as America’s wild horses and burros.  Off-range corrals and long-term pastures are flooded with these animals because the WHB Act no longer affords the protections sought by Velma, not because there are too many of them!

How exactly do contraceptives roll back the changes to the Act, fix the AUM imbalance and put an end to the crony capitalism?

The PZP zealots are on the same side of the debate as the public-lands ranchers, differing only in methodology.  The ranchers want the horses gone now while the darters want their numbers to decline gradually.  Not quite what Velma had in mind.

RELATED: Sanctuaries Are Not the Answer!

Onaqui Mountain Gather Starts on 9/11

BLM said today that 200 excess wild horses will be removed from the Onaqui Mountain HMA and surrounding lands in northwestern Utah, starting September 11.

The roundup will be open to public observation and captured animals will be taken to the WHB Facility in Delta, UT.

The news release suggested that the reason for the gather was overpopulation.

The HMA covers 205,394 acres and has an AML of 210, for an aimed-at population density of one animal per thousand acres, in line with the average density for all HMAs.

Onaqui Mountain HMA Map-1

The final environmental assessment gives few details about domestic livestock grazing.

Page 19 of a document from 2003 says cattle are allowed on the HMA between May and October, with sheep permitted in the Riverbed area between November and April.

The roundup will liberate 2,400 AUMs per year, making greater forage utilization by livestock operators possible.  It will not change permitted AUMs on those allotments.

Gather stats and daily reports will be posted to this page (link not working at the time this post went live).

RELATED: BLM Puts Crosshairs On Onaqui Mountain Horses.

BLM Moves Ahead with Modified Sterilization Research

A story posted today by The Argus Observer of Ontario, OR says the agency has ‘altered’ its plan for sterilizing the Warm Springs mares: Animals receiving the procedure would not be pregnant.  Otherwise, all aspects of the study remain the same.

None of the horses and burros removed from the HMA last October have been returned to their home range and none have been adopted, according to the report.

The agency is pushing the plan despite objections from the Animal Protection Caucus in Congress, along with many advocacy groups.  See for example the commentary by IDA posted last week.

RELATED: Warm Springs Gather Complete.

Sanctuaries Are Not the Answer!

The adoption pipeline is flooded with wild horses and burros because the WHB Act no longer affords the protections sought by Velma Johnston.  These animals are being forced off public lands in the western U.S. to make way for privately owned cattle and sheep.  The problem is not wild horse overpopulation, it is public-lands ranching.

RELATED: Private Sanctuaries: End-Game of Wild Horse Management Plan.

Another Devil’s Garden Roundup Starts Next Week

Approximately 500 wild horses will be removed from the Devil’s Garden Plateau WHT, beginning September 5, according to an undated news release from the Forest Service.

The WHT covers 308,000 acres in northeastern California and has an AML of 402, for an aimed-at population density of 1.3 animals per thousand acres.  The target density for WHB on public lands in the western U.S. is about one animal per thousand acres.

Devils_Garden_WHT_Map-1

The gather will be open to public observation, with roughly 60% of the captured animals going to the Double Devil corrals in Alturas and 40% taken to the BLM off-range corrals in Litchfield.

The announcement said the roundup would support wild horse health by reducing competition for food and water but did not identify the leading contenders for those resources, namely, public-lands ranchers.

The WHT intersects eight grazing allotments, see map on page 80 of the environmental assessment.  The roundup will liberate 6,000 AUMs per year, allowing greater forage utilization by livestock operators—on land set aside for the horses.  The action will not increase permitted AUMs on those allotments.

A link to the gather stats and daily reports was not provided.

RELATED: Double Devil Corrals Emptied.

Clark Mountain Reward Increases to $58K

BLM said today that additional groups have pledged their support, bringing the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the deaths of 42 wild burros to $58,000.  The events occurred along I-15 near the CA-NV border.

Each count carries a penalty of one year in prison and a $2,000 fine, according to the news release.  The announcement did not indicate if any of the shootings took place on permitted grazing allotments.

RELATED: Will the Clark Mountain Reward Loosen Any Lips?