Despite extreme drought conditions, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has done little to address the threat of massive livestock grazing on depleted public rangelands. This has placed federally protected wild horses and burros, as well as other wildlife species, in danger of starvation, dehydration and suffering in the upcoming summer months.
One BLM official, Doug Furtado of BLM's Battle Mountain District, has had the temerity to take modest steps to reduce livestock grazing on a particularly degraded range, known as the Argenta Allotment, but the ranchers have come after him with a vengeance. They even marched on the Nevada State Capitol to demand that Governor Brian Sandoval support calls for Furtado's termination from the agency. The BLM has once again caved in to ranchers' bullying tactics and is allowing grazing to resume in this severely depleted area during the driest summer months. Please take a stand against the BLM's irresponsible capitulation to ranchers, who use our public rangelands thanks to our tax-funded subsidies. Let's demand that top agency officials and Governor Sandoval support those local BLM officials who take responsible steps to protect our public rangelands during this historic drought.
Record Number of Citizens Protest Utah Wild Horse Roundup
Over 35,000 citizens have gone on record to oppose the BLM's plan to round up 600-697 wild horses beginning next month in southwestern Utah's Bible Springs Complex. The agency has scheduled the roundup to capitulate to demands from ranchers who are threatening to illegally capture federally protected wild horses if the BLM does not. The roundup will subject horses -- including tiny foals, elderly and infirm horses and horses surviving on reduced water resources -- to a traumatic helicopter stampede during summer desert heat. The roundup will deprive these animals of the two things -- family and freedom -- that are most important to them. Please read more about the strong stand that AWHPC supporters and other citizens have taken against this cruel and unnecessary roundup of wild horses by clicking here and here.
Tragedy Unfolds for Tribal Horses in Pacific Northwest
At left, a stallion rounded up this month from tribal lands on the Yakama reservation in Washington State, screams for his family at a feedlot in Zillah, Washington. This month, several hundred horses were reportedly rounded up with ATV's and delivered to the feedlot, which sold them to Bouvry Exports, a Canadian horse slaughter corporation. Last week, the adult horses were loaded onto trailers, leaving dozens of foals, many unweaned, behind - trampled, injured, dehydrated and screaming for their mothers. Dozens of people arrived with trailers to buy these orphans at $100 a piece, but the rescue effort is only a proverbial finger in the dike amidst reported plans by the Yakama and other Pacific Northwest tribes to round up thousands of horses over the summer and sell them for slaughter in Canada. Please read more about this tragic and breaking situation here. (Photo by Marla Ward.)
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The American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign is dedicated to preserving American wild horses and burros in viable free-roaming herds for generations to come, as part of our national heritage. The Campaign is endorsed by a national coalition of more than 60 organizations. AWHPC's founding organization Return to Freedom (RTF), is a national non-profit dedicated to wild horse preservation through sanctuary, education and conservation. RTF's American Wild Horse Sanctuary is based in Lompoc, CA.
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