The August edition of Horse Tales is out with a Q&A about the Pine Nut darting program by the real estate agent and PZP fanatic in the Minden-Gardnerville area.
Perfect topic for Foal-Free Friday, starting on page seven.
Question: Does BLM pay for your birth control program?
Answer: No, our program is paid for by donations.
Would you be surprised if they accept donations from the Pine Nut permittees?
Question: Are you concerned about making the horses extinct?
Answer: Our goal is to aggressively dart mares until we reduce the population to a number that the BLM believes is the Appropriate Management Level.
The AML for the Pine Nut HA, where she operates, is zero.
Question: Does the birth control sterilize them?
Answer: We use PZP. It requires a one-time primer vaccine and then any time after two weeks a booster. After that she can receive an annual booster. If you dart the mares and they do not foal about 7 years in a row it is possible they will self boost and could be sterile. We are careful to only boost 5 years in a row if the mare has already contributed a live healthy foal to the gene pool.
Might be preceeded by one or two dead ones but who’s counting? Self-boosting means the ovaries have been destroyed, a gradual process that begins with the first injection.
Question: Why can’t you just leave them alone?
Answer: We have already interfered by building homes, airports, industrial projects, streets and parks in their historic rangelands. Thousands of acres have been removed from only a few decades ago. We do our best to be sure they have adequate food and water by not allowing their numbers to increase to a point that BLM feels they need to remove them. Our goal is to keep our horses out of a long term holding facility at a high cost to the taxpayers.
Not one word about permitted grazing and the number of horses displaced thereby.
Question: Do you need more volunteers?
Answer: I think all the groups need volunteers who can work as a team. They all need people to ID the horses, photograph them for the database and get certified to provide the birth control vaccine and then trained on the range. It is essential we reduce the reproduction rate in order to protect them from removal.
Let that sink in. If we get rid of them they can stay.