Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Olds Alberta Canada
• Horses: 0
We here in Canada, also have feral horses, with the same debates, concerning management, going on
We do have one advantage here though, in the fact that those horses removed from the range, that are not adopted for one reason or another, can be sold for slaughter
Unless policy has changed, that is not so in the USA, according to speakers that I have heard from here.
Apparently, horses not adopted, returned, ect,, can't be sold for slaughter, and thus their numbers being kept, fed at tax payer expenses, is growing exponentially
We do have wolves and cougars that prey on our feral horses.
Yes, there are many good using horses,made by experienced people that capture them, plus there are incentive programs , like those mustang makeovers, prison horse training programs, adoption programs, but they don't come close to providing a viable future for all of these surplus horses
Also, in my area, there is another problem, far as feral horses. They remain a great reservoir for EIA,living where they do,and there needs to be a program that makes mandatory testing of all captured feral horses for EIA
I do believe that the laws that protect feral horses from some of the cruel capture practices in the past, are a good thing> I also believe that if the slaughter option is not available, then there has to be some control of re production. In fact, the mare darting program is being used here for a trial period
There are worse fates the death, with slow starvation being one of them
Are some horses 'more wild' then others, thus deserve to be called a 'heritage ' animal, at least, if not truly native, is another debate. There are isolated herds that have had little outside influence from the time they were first introduced by the Spaniards,and part of what makes the 'west' western, thus should be preserved to some extent