RIVERTON, Wyo. – Wild Horse advocates gathered outside of the student center building at Central Wyoming College on Monday to protest the Bureau of Land Management’s treatment of and plans for Wild Horses across the West.
Simone Netherlands, representing Respect 4 Horses, said she attends every BLM Advisory Board meeting on Wild Horses held twice a year around the region, according to a report in COUNTY 10.
“There is no overpopulation of wild horses,” she said. “We’ve gone from over two million wild horses to just 30,000 in the wild, but they complain that they’re overrun with wild horses.”
In prepared remarks, Netherlands said, “We now have over 50,000 wild horses and burros stuffed in holding facilities. Broken wild horses, without their families, some in feedlot like conditions, with no protection from the elements.”
She also said the current horses in the wild have less than 26 million acres in which they are allowed to live while cattle are allowed on 160 million acres.
Netherlands said the BLM is advancing policies that are directly opposed to their mission.
“Their mandate is to protect wild horses, not do pest control for cattle ranchers. It’s not fair to wild horses, and it’s because they don’t make anybody any money,” she said. Wild horses “are only allocated 18 percent of the forage in wild horse management areas while cattle get the rest.”