It is a newsworthy day, today, which means that I get to pick a horse article from the web and share it with the viewers and readers of The Equus Ally. But instead of compiling information about the topic into a whole bunch of paragraphs that look a lot like a news article in and of itself, I am going to list the main points of the subject at hand. This way, the reader, you, can look over the main points without having to rifle through all of that other stuff...
So, What's in the News today?
The Mustang Roundups: General Overview
- Wild mustangs still exist in states such as Nevada, Montana, Wyoming, and Oregon and after roundup are held in "holding pens" awaiting potential homes
- The Bureau of Land Management manages the wild population numbers by culling the wild herds of some of the horses.
- More than 30,000 horses are kept in holding pens, and there are at least 5,000 horses kept at any singular BLM holding facility at one time.
- The BLM now has to make "welfare" homes for un-adoptable horses in Kansas and Oklahoma. This means that the horses are feeding off of the public dole.
- According to some horse geneticists, horses need to have at least 150 horses in a herd population in order to have genetic diversity. Recently however, some of the horse herds have been found to have less than the recommended amount.
- The Bureau usually uses helicopters over the course terrain to herd the animals. This can be traumatic to horses as the helicopter swoops down to get the horses moving. The helicopters also push the horses too fast, causing pregnant mares to abort their fetuses while younger horses and newborns get trampled, left behind and left to die. A sad end to a historical animal of America.
- There are other options beyond the helicopter gatherings in order to keep herd numbers down. Bait trapping is where the horses are lured in by mineral blocks and water and then given a contraceptive injection known as PZP. However, these methods are not as utilized as the helicopter roundups.
- The companies, ranchers, and farmers are complaining that they now have to pay for the welfare of horses that they pressured the government to take off public lands so that they can farm, or raise cattle on for cheap.
- In my personal opinion, the BLM needs to stand up for the policies that the American people hold to it.