As indicated in the BLM program data, the agency spent $12.186 million in FY 2022 to capture and remove 16,971 horses and 3,222 burros.
That works out to about $600 per animal.
The on-range population as of March 1 was 64,604 horses and 17,780 burros, compared to AMLs of 23,866 horses and 2,919 burros.
Horses were at 2.7X AML while burros were at 6.1X AML.
There were many more burros than allowed by plan, but horses were targeted 5.3:1.
The expenditure liberated 16,971 × 12 + 3,222 × 6 = 222,984 AUMs per year.
Given that the ranchers pay $1.35 per AUM, the simple payback period (zero percent interest) would be 40.5 years.
Would you say this is a wise use of taxpayer funds?
A grazing fee of $55 per AUM would cut the payback period to one year.
RELATED: Forage Demand of Current Herd.