The federal government would be blocked from killing wild horses and burros on community lands, if provisions in a draft house spending bill delivered this week finish up in the final legislation. According to the bill, wild horses also won’t be sale to slaughterhouse buyers. This has been discussed by the House appropriations subcommittee, on July 12.
Prior spending bills have kept safe this animals who were roaming on a wide area supervised by the Bureau of Land Management, but now, the President’s administration is suggesting something different. They said that the Bureau’s Wild Horse and Burro Program could not be maintained. Also, they’ve added that it is impossible to manage with the wild horse population!
After hearing this, the wild horses advocates reacted right away, because for them this animals are significant symbol of the West! Rep. Ken Calvert, R-Corona, has been moved by the American Wild Horse Campaign and had to do something to save the wild horses and burros. He is in charge for the Interior Appropriations sub-panel.
From Clavert’s office, Jason Gagnon shared some information with the public. As he said, Calvert has received many calls and emails about this topic, and people shared their concerns about this animals.
According to the BLM, nearly 73,000 wild horses and burros are roaming on public property at this moment. The number concerned everyone, because that’s almost 46,000 more than the program can sustain. Off-range facilities take care for the other 46,000 animals, but that takes a big part of the wild horse program’s budget (nearly $50 million).
Horse advocates don’t agree with the latest changes, suggesting that the BLM should use more birth control in order to reduce the wild horses population. We still don’t know if Calvert supports the White House’s strategy.
On Tuesday afternoon a draft bill has been released and it included a sentence that really positively reflected on wild horses advocates. But it is not over yet, because they have certain fears. The full House Appropriations Committee will take up the bill next week and the wild horses advocates are afraid that an amendment for horses to be killed or sold to slaughterhouses will be initiated before that meeting.
Suzanne Roy, the Executive Director of the Campaign shared her concerns and advises everyone to keep the pressure!