Idaho’s Few Remaining Wild Horses Are under Attack

A curious Sands Basin HMA stallion watches our friends from Save Our Wild Horses.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Idaho (Owyhee Field Office) plans to reduce wild horse numbers in the Black Mountain, Hardtrigger, and Sands Basin Herd Management Areas to low numbers of just 30 horses in the Black Mountain HMA, 33 horses in the Sands Basin HMA, and 66 horses in the Hardtrigger HMA.

This disastrous plan creates a scenario in which inbreeding among the wild horses is inevitable — daughters with fathers, brothers with sisters, and mothers with sons. This effectively destroys their ability to survive. Inbreeding results in an increase of the offspring being affected by recessive traits such as blindness, deafness, a breakdown of natural immunities, and physical deformities.

BLM’s response is to bring in a few horses from other HMAs to address genetic problems. The practice of introducing new horses diminishes the unique qualities present in these herds — for better or for worse — and speaks to BLM creating a problem (lack of genetic viability) that they will have to continuously – and retroactively – fix.

BLM also plans to use Gonacon as fertility control on mares returned to the range. Studies show that Gonacon is likely permanent after just two applications. It effectively destroys the ovaries and therefore natural hormone production that drives natural, wild behaviors.

WE CANNOT GIVE UP ON THESE HORSES.  Fighting for needed change is the least we can do for these precious animals. Will you please join us?

Please take a stand today — it takes less than a minute to submit your comments to BLM to state your opposition to this ill-conceived proposal.

TIPS on How to Comment: We have provided talking points for you to use. You can leave them as written if you like. However, we encourage you to edit the suggested comments to reflect your unique thoughts and perspectives.

If you would like to research this Environmental Assessment a bit further, you may find it (and supporting documents) here: EplanningUi (blm.gov).

For a LIVE tutorial — Join our friends with Save Our Wild Horses on Thursday, June 8th, at 7 pm EST.

They will have a 1-hour, 2-part Zoom:

Part 1 – Journalist Vickery Eckhoff presents: Speaking Truth to Power: The Media, BLM, & You

Part 2 addresses how to submit Public Comments on the Owyhee Field Office Herd Management’s proposed plan for the Idaho wild horse herds.

To register for this Zoom meeting, please email Heather Hellyer (Save Our Wild Horses) at kaya97524@yahoo.com.

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