-Wild horses and burros
have been protected in the United States since 1971,
when Congress passed an act to protect them
from harassment, from death. That came at a time
when after many years, horses and burros
had been hunted and rounded up
and sold for slaughter. And they had reached numbers
that some activists were saying were too low and that they were on
the road to extinction. And since then, they’ve been the
source of lots of controversy, lots of fighting,
and lots of division. We went to Nevada,
which is the state that has the largest population
of wild horses and burros. About more than half of
the estimated 88,000 wild horses and burros
that roam several states in the American West
live in Nevada. One method for reducing
the numbers is adoptions. When horses are rounded up,
they’re offered for adoption. The government also has done
research on fertility control and has used fertility control
in limited ways, but by no means the level
that a lot of animal advocates think should be done. Whenever the idea of offering
horses for sale at a large scale or for euthanizing or killing
horses comes up, there’s an enormous backlash. Members of Congress talk
about being almost besieged by phone calls and e-mails and other messages
from horse supporters and from everyday Americans who find the idea
of killing wild horses just completely repugnant. Recently, a very strange
alliance of groups and people involved
in this situation came forward with a proposal. On one hand, you have
ranching organizations, like the National Cattleman’s
Beef Association, and on the other side,
organizations like the Humane Society
of the United States. The idea would be increasing
round-ups dramatically for several years, pulling a lot more horses off
the range, increasing adoptions, putting more of those horses
into long-term pastures that are cheaper than corrals
but then also — and this would be very new
if this happened — starting a very aggressive
fertility-control program for the horses
that remain on the range. The proposal’s also
very expensive. Its backers say it would
cost $50 million a year. That would be an increase
of almost two-thirds of the Bureau of
Land Management’s budget devoted to horses. It seems quite unlikely
that Congress is going to devote that kind of money
to this problem. It’s very likely that the horse
situation will remain as it has for many
years.

Watch why some wild horses are the most controversial animals in the West

12 thoughts on “Watch why some wild horses are the most controversial animals in the West

  • September 19, 2019 at 8:00 pm
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    No fkg killing of wild horses! Save them.

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  • September 19, 2019 at 8:13 pm
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    Reward for the killing of over 40 wild burros in eastern California.

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  • September 19, 2019 at 8:42 pm
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    WAY TOO MANY HORSES ARE ROUNDED UP AT A TIME & LEFT IN LIFE THREATENING SITUATIONS. LEAVE MORE OF THEM ON THE RANGE IN THE WILD.

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  • September 19, 2019 at 8:49 pm
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    We adopted 2 wild horses and wish more people would step up and care for them, once they are trained via natural horsemanship, they become one of the domesticated herd. The BLM does not make it easy! We do it as an act of charity and would help others do the same. But the Govt should help smooth out the process by providing more of the initial training needed to domesticate ie. Hiring full time trainers at various facilities for example

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  • September 19, 2019 at 8:53 pm
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    Agricultural development always conflict with nature

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  • September 19, 2019 at 9:29 pm
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    "Cattlesmans beef association" what are we eating?

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  • September 19, 2019 at 9:42 pm
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    Beautiful animals!

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  • September 19, 2019 at 10:01 pm
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    Worthless like the hog,

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  • September 19, 2019 at 10:16 pm
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    These are feral horses, wild horses went extinct in North American thousands of years ago. I know everyone wants the feel good solution, just remember their growing population will likely have disastrous impacts on real native wildlife, including some that are already endangered.

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  • September 20, 2019 at 3:46 am
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    is it just me or did they not mention why people want to control the horse population? I would assume it's some environmental reason? but what specifically.

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  • September 20, 2019 at 7:17 am
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    The Wild West is just a DUMPING ZONE for anyone who has a horse that they don’t want ! Not WILD but UNWANTED HORSES ! Much like the FERAL CAT problem in thee EAST !

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  • September 20, 2019 at 7:26 am
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    The forage allocated to privately owned livestock on public lands in the western U.S., about nine million AUMs per year, would support at least 750,000 wild horses and burros, enough to empty all of the off-range corrals and long-term pastures fifteen times over.

    Reply

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