Washington Post: "Over three years, major ranching and hunting organizations, represented by [J.J.] Goicoechea [Nevada's State Veterinarian] and others, quietly negotiated with animal welfare groups, including the Humane Society of the United States. These strange bedfellows recently unveiled a wild horse proposal that they say meets both sides’ goals: It keeps mustangs alive, and it gets a lot more off the land."
Why quietly negotiated? Why do they consider them "strange bedfellows" Don't we all want to do right by these horses?!?
Because otherwise the "advocates" (IE: The Cloud Foundation, Skydog Sanctuary, American Wild Horse Campaign and countless others) would start screaming bloody murder, rile the public up and begin suing to stop any kind of progress or form of management. These people genuinely believe that there aren't enough
Mustangs, not that they're over-populated! They want the horses in holding set free, every cow and sheep removed from public land permanently, Mustangs on every single square foot of public land and no more round-ups or gathers!
Some of them are even against fertility control! PZP is a "pesticide" now, gelding stallions "changes herd dynamics", spaying mares is "barbaric" and god forbid you adopt out the foals and yearlings because that's "tearing families apart!".
And unfortunately, these people are for more Internet savvy then the BLM is- They had Facebook pages dedicated to their "cause" long before the BLM decided to start adopting horses over the Internet! So they're achieved a strong toe-hold and now have the public in their grasp. And since the public has next to no earthly idea about horses (Let alone The West or humane management), they have a lot of clout and political power.
So yes, seeing just one "advocate" group working with the BLM is strange indeed. I have no problem seeing why they're tried to keep quiet about it, because now that the cat's out of the bag... the other advocacy groups are calling them "traitors" and "betrayers"!
But people do
want to do right by the horses, it's just that their not the ones with the most power in this situation sadly.
Are they saying it will cost $50 million a year to provide birth control to wild horses? and the round-ups will continue as they have for the last 50 years. So the only thing changing is providing more fertility control?
It's actually $50 million on-top
of the BLM's usual budget of $80 million, so $130 million in all. Definitely a decent chunk of change. But it wouldn't just be for birth control (There would be a ton more of that yes), it would be for rounding up ten's of thousands of horses for the next decade
or so, moving them and the horse's currently in holding out to "sustainable" pastures and carrying for them for the rest of their natural lifespan. None of that comes cheap. In fact, that's probably the most expensive route that they could've gone.
"Over four hours, two helicopters pushed 117 horses into the trap." THERE HAS TO BE A BETTER WAY!!!
Actually, helicopter gathering is
the "better way". The truth is, these horses literally roam over areas of 100's if not thousands of square miles... you simply can't effectively round-up areas as huge as that without using helicopters. The helicopters themselves are flown by highly-trained pilots, the horses are actually trotted
the majority of the way to the trap and are only forced to "run" the few hundred feet (With the help of a Judas horse to lead the way). Even Temple Grandin has praised the helicopter method of gathering- https://www.grandin.com/references/h....mustangs.html
I hope Laura Leigh, founder of Wild Horse Education, is being a bit melodramatic? But what if she isn't?
“If this proposal gets passed by Congress in any form, the program will collapse. Wild horses will be in danger of slaughter and mass killing once more. Wild herds will be decimated in numbers, brutalized through surgical experimentation, and their habitat will be destroyed by profit driven interests with no protections. In addition our voice to fight back will be gutted.”
Yes, Laura Leigh is being melodramatic. As she always is. Despite her blog being called "Wild Horse Education", it doesn't actually have any educational value. She over-dramatizes gatherings, grossly anthropomorphizes the horses themselves, uses emotional language to deliberately get people upset and is one of those "advocates" that I mentioned earlier. You know, the ones who just want the Mustangs to run amuck with no management.
Do not listen to her or anything that she says.
Read this article instead-- http://www.rangemagazine.com/feature...ge-mustang.pdf
It goes back to 2011, but basically the situation is exactly the same. Some interesting history about Wild Horse Annie in there too.