Save the Onaqui wild horses!
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This month the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) proposed a significant round-up and removal of 72% of the wild horses of the Onaqui Mountain Herd in Utah. It calls for the removal of "over 325" horses from a herd estimated at 450 horses (not counting the 2017 foals), with the goal of leaving only 121 horses on a range of over 240,000 acres.
Wild Horses of America Foundation works with the BLM to treat these horses with contraception and we spend a significant amount of time on the range. These horses mean a lot to us, as well as to the many photographers, tourists and observers who enjoy seeing them in the wild.
Removing over 325 horses would be a devastating blow to this iconic herd.
You can learn more about this proposal by accessing links on our website: http://wildhorses.org
The BLM's plan is not set in stone, and we want to modify it. The deadline for public input is October 31st, 2017 (4pm MST).
How you can help:
- Please sign this petition. We will deliver it to the BLM before the October 31st deadline.
- Consider submitting your written comments to the BLM: firstname.lastname@example.org
For your email, be sure to use this subject: Population Control, Gather, and Research for the Onaqui Mountain Wild Horse Herd Management Area Project
Please accept the following comments and concerns in regard to the Public Scoping Notice relating to Population Control, Gather, and Research for the Onaqui Mountain Wild Horse Herd Management Area Project:
- We recommend that the BLM not remove any horses from the Onaqui range, and instead increases the number of contraception doses to control herd growth.
- We are very concerned about removing any horses from any range right now due to the uncertainty of whether Congress will approve "euthanasia" as a solution to the approximately 45,000 horses that have already been removed from the range. We do not want to add to this number.
- We recommend that the BLM reevaluate the established Appropriate Management Level (AML), which is currently 121 to 210 horses. We feel that the range provides enough feed and water to increase the AML.
- We believe that a large reduction in herd size, particularly considering that the herd is spread out in segregated groups, would put the horses at risk of inbreeding, which may cause genetic problems.
- We think that this herd is very important to the American public. It provides incredible value to the many tourists, photographers and observers who enjoy seeing this herd in its natural environment. It also provides enjoyment to the thousands of people who follow it through numerous online sources where pictures of the herd are posted. Further, this herd is increasingly driving dollars to the local community (Tooele County, Utah) as tourists travel to visit the horses.
- We believe that any impacts to sage grouse habitat, wildfire restoration areas and resource impacts can be successfully mitigated/managed without removing 72% of the herd.
- We strongly suggest if a removal occurs that: vastly fewer than 325 horses are removed, bait and water traps are used in place of helicopters, emphasis be placed on those horses that inhabit areas of the range that impact sage grouse habitat, emphasis be placed on removing horses only from areas where the public is not as likely to find and see wild horses, younger and more adoptable horses (sub 5 years old) are removed while leaving older horses on the range, that the BLM works with local advocates to place the horses in good adoptive homes, and horses are only removed from the range at a rate at which adoption can keep up.
Thank you for your consideration.
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