BLM announced today the signing of a Decision Record, allowing plans for a roundup to move ahead, subject to a 30-day appeal period. The DR authorized the Proposed Action (Alternative D) in the EA. Both documents were posted as one file.
The operation would capture 560 wild horses and return 60, including those who received ‘population growth suppression.’ The news release did not indicate if the treatments applied to males and females.
The Confusion HMA covers about 235,000 acres in western Utah and has an AML of 115, for an aimed-at stocking rate of 0.5 horses per thousand acres. As mentioned earlier this year, fractional stocking rates may indicate large amounts of forage diverted to privately owned livestock.
The current population is thought to be 661, including 546 excess horses.
The HMA intersects five grazing allotments, with the horses receiving just 12% of the total authorized forage, excluding wildlife.
The forage allocated to livestock puts the true AML at 932, meaning there are no excess horses in the HMA and the roundup is unnecessary.