Putting Price Tags on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

Comments on the 2018 EA for resource enforcement actions in the Onaqui Mountain HMA suggested that forage on public lands generates an economic benefit of about $100 per AUM per year.

If that’s true in other areas, a wild horse, who consumes 12 AUMs per year, represents an economic loss of $1,200 per year.

A wild burro, who devours six AUMs per year, represents a loss of $600 per year.

The AML for Twin Peaks HMA is 758 wild horses and 116 wild burros, for a total economic loss of $979,200 per year.

For simplicity, let’s assume the 27,000 animals allowed by plan on your public lands are horses only.  The economic loss is $32.4 million per year.

The current population of 95,000 represents a loss of $114 million per year.

As Archie D. Ryan of the DOI stated many years ago, “The wild horse consumes forage needed by domestic livestock.  They bring in no return and serve no useful purpose.”

RELATED: Value of Forage in HMAs?

One thought on “Putting Price Tags on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

  1. The cost of maintaining wild life, a PROTECTED special status Native N American Species on public lands is only relative to the cost of the millions wasted on the extinguishment of a National Treasure. Rancher’s livestock are private property and lease allotments subject to a number of regulations including the 1966 National Historic Preservation Act and the Endangered Species Act. The 1976 Kleppe v New Mexico Supreme Court decision relegated wild horses and burros to protected wildlife status. Their legal status on public lands has long been circumvented because Congress does not enforce their own Acts.

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