Marybeth Devlin writes following concerning the Pryor Mountain Herd and the use PZP*:
The issue underpinning the use of PZP and the continuing cycle of removals of wild horses from the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range is: Whether there are excess wild horses. No, there aren’t. BLM creates the illusion of an overpopulation by administratively setting the maximum herd-size below minimum-viable population. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature determined that, if a herd were managed carefully per a stud-book, it could sustain itself genetically at a minimum of 500 individuals. Compare that number to BLM’s maximum: 120.
In fact, according to the latest genetic analysis, the Pryor Mountain herd is evidencing “a general trend for a decline in variations levels of the herd.” The recommendation was to “increase population size.” Yet, BLM stubbornly insists on its own failed approach of artificially limiting herd-size, declaring that it disagrees with the scientific “interpretation.” Continuing reading »
* Porcine zona pellucida is a form of zona pellucida extracted from the ovaries of pigs, often referred to by the initials PZP. It is a popular source of antigens for immunocontraception . Porcine zona pellucida has been used in wildlife contraception since the late 1980s. Animals with which PZP has been employed in this context include elephants, feral horses , elk and whitetailed deer.
Pryor Mountain wild horses. Photographer not specified. Google search image.