Reining in the BLM’s Wild Horse Crisis

Wild horse and burro management is a nuanced and emotional issue that requires more than a one-size-fits-all solution

Wild horses find a home at an ecosanctuary in Wyoming. ©BLM

Few symbols embody the American West like wild horses galloping through an endless sea of sagebrush. Unfortunately, there are now too many animals roaming the land and the plight of wild horses and burros continues to grow more dire as federal authorities in southern Nevada prepare for an emergency roundup of hundreds of starving animals. And this is not a unique situation as states across the West face skyrocketing horse and burro populations and dwindling forage to support them.

In response to the problem, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released a report last month that examines new ways to reduce the number of wild horses and burros to a sustainable level and save our western rangelands. The proposals have been met with ardent opposition from horse advocacy groups who claim it will lead to the virtual eradication of free-roaming horses and burros on the West’s public lands. This sort of rhetoric has become all too common, with both sides of the emotionally charged and logistically tangled debate guilty of peddling hyperbole. It is time to thoughtfully consider a range of options, which the recent BLM report outlines, that can protect the environment, conserve wildlife, and secure the future of wild horses and burros.


Read the full article in The Hill.


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