Wild Horse & Burro Update From AAEP
In the last 24 hours, you may have read about a recommendation from the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) regarding the potential sale or euthanasia of thousands of wild horses and burros. This recommendation has received national attention.
While most AAEP members are not directly involved in the care and management of wild horses, you may receive questions from your clients or have questions yourself about the issue. We want you to be informed.
Summary of Issue:
On Sept. 9, the Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board recommended that the BLM euthanize or sell “without limitation” excess “unadoptable” horses and burros in the BLM’s off-range corrals and pastures.
The National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board is an independent panel comprised of members of the public that makes recommendations to the Bureau of Land Management regarding its management of wild horses and burros.
The BLM has not yet taken a position on the advisory board’s recommendation and said it would respond at the board’s spring meeting in 2017.
Currently, there are more than 67,000 wild horses and burros on public rangelands, and the BLM is caring for nearly 50,000 animals in off-range corrals and pastures.
The BLM spent $49 million caring for off-range animals during its fiscal year 2015, which accounted for two-thirds of its wild horse and burro budget.
BLM Wild Horse and Burro Quick Facts
Wild horses should be killed or sold, government board decides
BLM drops plan to surgically sterilize horses
AAEP BLM Task Force Report on the Wild Horse and Burro Program (2011)
The AAEP’s Welfare and Public Policy Advisory Council will be evaluating the advisory board’s recommendation as well. If you have questions or comments about wild horse issues, please contact one of the AAEP’s staff liaisons to the WPPAC – Keith Kleine or Sally Baker.
We hope this information will be helpful with any conversations you may have about this population of horses.
Kathleen Anderson, DVM
2016 AAEP President