Carol Walker, who lives outside Longmont, Colo., adopted three wild horses, from the Bureau of Land Management for $125 each. Photo: Matthew Staver / NYT.

Wild horses are running out of room on and off the range

Carol Walker, who lives outside Longmont, Colo., adopted three wild horses, from the Bureau of Land Management for $125 each.  Photo: Matthew Staver / NYT.
PHOTO CREDIT: MATTHEW STAVER / NYT
Carol Walker, who lives outside Longmont, Colo., adopted three wild horses, from the Bureau of Land Management for $125 each.

“Seeing these horses out in the wild and then seeing them in a holding pen, it will break your heart,” Carol Walker tells The New York Times. in an article by Dan Frosch, “I’d rather they be free than live with me.”

Walker recently adopted three wild horses from the Bureau of Land Management and given them a home with her just outside Longmont, Colorado.

Fran Ackley, who oversees the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program in Colorado states, “They have all their needs met here. Except their freedom. I can’t say if they want it or not.”

What a ridiculous way to think, but more from him later.

Frosch, who penned the Times piece, allows both advocates for wild horses and burros to speak out and the BLM and Salazar to defend themselves. In our opinion what the BLM has done and continues to do under Salazar’s watch is indefensible.

No mention is made that these cruel and deadly BLM roundups are totally unnecessary, or that “drought and wintery” conditions are being used as an excuse to rob America’s wild horses and burros of their freedom. And yes, these equines care about their freedom, just like you do.

Now some words from BLM jokester Tom Gorey.

“We’re looking at critical mass,” said Tom Gorey, a spokesman for the Bureau. “The fact is we can’t be in a position of gathering horses that we can’t take care of. The capacity issue is staring us in the face.”

Well, Mr. Gorey, that is true. However, the “critical mass” of a mess of stockpiled wild horses was created by bureaucrats just like you. Now you are concerned. Why is that exactly?

I suspect BLM officials like Gorey are concerned because they have been exposed selling 1,777 wild horses (according to the Times) to former Salazar ranch hand and known slaughter buyer Tom Davis. That pretty much closes the slaughter outlet for getting rid of wild horses in long-term holding to make room for more. One would think; one would hope.

Anyway, because of all this, Salazar has been forced to say he has made some changes that will not make it as easy to sell wild horses to slaughter. Looks like a little bit more red tape to be got around if you ask me which appears to be easily enough done.

Why are the BLM getting rid of as many wild equines off public lands as quickly as they possibly can?

Well, most of you already know this, but it is to favor special interest groups who want the public lands the wild horses and burros are federally protected to roam on. They include public lands cattle ranchers, oil and gas drillers and various resource miners. Oh, and let us not forget the sale of large parcels of public territory to public and private sector interests for the water rights that go with these lands.

Now to the numbers.

Frosch has to work with the numbers he has been given. But before you read the statements below, remember there used to be 2 million wild equines roaming freely in the same ten western states.

“In an effort to maintain a stable population, while also preserving public land, Congress passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971, allowing the bureau to remove “excess” wild horses from the range.

But with virtually no natural predators, herds typically double every four years. Currently, about 37,300 wild horses and burros roam across federal rangeland in 10 Western states, about 11,000 more than what the bureau deems manageable.”

What? 25,000 wild horses is all these states can handle?

Here’s more from Ackley which makes him almost as comical as Gorey. It exposes the self-will, self-righteousness and self-justification behind the BLM’s annihilation of our wild herds.

“People need to realize that we’ve done more than what was envisioned under the Wild Horses Act, which is why we’re in the situation we are today,” said Mr. Ackley, the head of the bureau’s Colorado program.

Well, you may have done more than what you envisioned at the outset, Mr. Ackley, but I would say your mission is pretty clear: to remove all of America’s wild horses and burros from public lands and destroy them.

And how about this from Ackley?

“He noted that horses at the Cañon City facility are well cared for”.

Yet, this month “a strange illness sickened horses at Cañon City, and 19 died or were euthanized. Mr. Ackley said he had never seen anything like it.”

What caught my eye is that it was reported earlier that the Cañon City horses were found dead. Now it looks like they may have been euthanized.

But why? Well, there is only one thing for certain.

Whenever wild horses die and the BLM are involved there is only one fact clear for all to see: they are dead.

Read full New York Times article here >>