This excellent piece just in from Laura Allen at Animal Law Coalition – please pass this on and write and call before April 8:
“It is no secret that BLM’s program for the wild horses and burros is to round them up, remove them from the range and warehouse them in holding facilities. What is a mystery is why taxpayers would foot the bill for managing wild animals in this way.
For Fiscal Year (FY) 2010, from October 1, 2009 to September 30, 2010, the BLM removed 10,137 horses and 476 burros; 443 mares were treated with the fertility control drug PZP. The total FY 2010 program expenditures were $65 million, of which $44.6 million was spent on roundup, removal and holding.
So far during FY 2011, which began on October 1, 2010, the BLM has removed 5,825 horses and 75 burros and PZP-treated 469 mares. So far in FY 2011, $4.5 million has been spent on roundup and removal; holding costs for FY 2011 are projected to be $38.5 million.
Another 4,686 wild horses and 150 burros are slated for capture and removal from herd management areas this year, 2011. If BLM continues on its present course for FY2011-FY2012, the agency will roundup and remove from the range 28,000 wild horses and burros at a total cost of almost $223M over the life of these animals. This would bring the total number of wild horses and burros held in holding facilities to nearly 46,000. (Though BLM appears unable to keep track of the wild horses and burros trapped in its holding facilities.)”
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