BLM is Also Considering an Alternative to Replace Wild Stallions with Geldings (Again)
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is proposing a "capture, treat and release" (CTR) roundup with the removal of at least 79 horses from 625-square-miles of public lands in the Cedar Mountain and Onaqui Herd Management Areas (HMAs) in Utah. Despite its mandate to protect wild horses and the fact that these HMAs are designated by Congress as wild horse habitat, Utah BLM allocates the majority of the resources in these HMAs to thousands of privately-owned livestock, instead of federally-protected wild horses.
While AWHPC supports the CTR portion of the action, and applauds the BLM for proposing to maintain the natural 50/50 herd sex ratio, it is of great concern that this proposed action also includes the removal of 79 wild horses living inside and outside of the HMAs. The agency maintains that yearlings and horses living outside the invisible boundaries of the HMA must be removed.
Also under consideration for this roundup is the permanent sterilization (castration) of 40 stallions. Experts have documented that the castration of wild stallions is detrimental to the health of the individual horses, the herds and wild horse society as a whole. AWHPC opposes the replacement of free-roaming, wild stallions with castrated males.
The proposed roundup is scheduled to take place in late winter, beginning on February 20th, when mares are heavily pregnant or nursing newborn foals. The trauma of late winter roundups has been documented to cause pregnant mares to suffer spontaneous abortions and also jeopordizes the newborn foals. (Note: The Environmental Assessment states that the roundup would take place in January, which contradicts both the BLM press release and BLM roundup schedule.)
We must tell the agency that, while we support CTR roundups, they must also take the following actions.
► Cancel plans to remove any horses.
► Cancel any plans to castrate (geld) any stallions.
► Schedule the roundup at a safer time of year.
► Conduct all CTR roundups maintaining existing social bands (families).
Take Easy Action below to submit your comments on the proposed roundup and please share this alert with friends and family!