Burro numbers well above BLM goal

wild burro of Arizona Mojave Desert

What should be done *if* the population of burros is actually excessive? Wild burros have as much right to live free as wild horses do. However, much of the American South-West is suffering from a severe drought. The BLM keeps talking about using birth control methods on all the wild equine population – why haven’t they already? What are your thoughts about our American wild burros? ~ HfH

From: Mojave Valley Daily News
By: Neil Young

ULLHEAD CITY — About 20 people attended Wednesday’s Bureau of Land Management “scoping” meeting held in the Suddenlink Community Center.

wild burro of Arizona Mojave Desert

Wild Burro of the Mojave Desert Southwestern United States

Chad Benson, BLM wild horse and burro specialist, said the Black Mountain Herd Management Area, of which the Bullhead City area is a part, covers an area from Interstate 40 to the Grand Canyon.

BLM’s “appropriate management level” is 478 burros, but a population estimate completed in 2014 indicates there are 1,517 to 1,827 burros in the area — 300 percent above management level, Benson said.

BLM monitors vegetation and water supplies to make sure the population can continue to be sustained.

As the result of the increased burro population, the federal agency is noticing an “excess use of resources,” increasing human interaction, damage to

private property and threats to public safety by burros straying onto area roadways.

BLM’s goal is to maintain a healthy burro population and healthy habitat, Benson said. The agency is investigating fertility control measures that may be put in place at some point.

The only questions or comments permitted from the audience were private one-on-one encounters with BLM employees. There were also public comment forms available.

One person attending the meeting — contractor Larry Adams — told the Daily News he was disappointed the BLM did not address the “negative effects on native wildlife” from the burro population.

BLM is seeking public comments until May 2 as it prepares an “environmental assessment.”

Those may be mailed to Chad Benson, BLM Kingman Field Office, 2755 Mission Blvd., Kingman, AZ 86401.

Read Original Article

AUTHOR: Amber Barnes
12 Comments
  • Sadly any input, or potential solution’s to this “problem” will not be considered by the BLM. the BLM will do exactly what they determine necessary, and send all they can round up to slaughter… there, the problem is solved!!

    April 3, 2015
  • Daniel Cordero

    «One person attending the meeting — contractor Larry Adams — told the Daily News he was disappointed the BLM did not address the “negative effects on native wildlife” from the burro population.»

    Funny statement taking into account burros, like wild horses should be regarded as wildlife. Even funnier is when he claims he is “disappointed”. Since when did Adams or the Cattoors or the other guys ever give a damn about wildlife -of which burros are a part- or to native vegetation? Obviously his only concern is raking in megabucks by getting awarded the contract to remove them and later on sell them to the KBs. Such persons, with a clear conflict of interest, should be barred from providing any feedback.

    «threats to public safety by burros straying onto area roadways»

    Sorry, but this is a very weak argument. There are wildlife passes on highways here; moreover, highways are usually fenced and built on high ground to provide for proper camber and help drain rainfall. I don’t see why in the US it cannot be done the same way.

    April 3, 2015
    • MS

      I agree that such people like Adams (see below) should be barred from making any comments due to self-interest at the expense of the LIVES of burros and horses ….

      “Since when did Adams or the Cattoors or the other guys ever give a damn about wildlife -of which burros are a part- or to native vegetation? Obviously his only concern is raking in megabucks by getting awarded the contract to remove them and later on sell them to the KBs. Such persons, with a clear conflict of interest, should be barred from providing any feedback.”

      I hope those in charge making decisions realize that there are sly ones out there wanting to take advantage.

      April 4, 2015
  • MS

    Allow all the burros to remain — sterilization can be administered — we MUST have a non-lethal solution to overpopulation issue, if in fact, such issue exists. There should be NO roundups whatsoever, NO pipeline for slaughter whatsoever …. burros, like horses, have the right to live and enjoy their lives …. WE must support them in their survival and prosperity …

    April 4, 2015
  • Leave them alone. They are a valuable asset to our country. NO roundups please? NO pipeline through their either. We need to focus on more fuel efficiency, less oil and gas. I’ve never seen wild horses in my life and I will be 60 in the fall.

    April 5, 2015
  • Louie C

    From AMERICAN HERDS

    CRITICALLY ENDANGERED
    http://americanherds.blogspot.com/2007/12/critically-endangered.html

    While this may seem a little boring to those of us who merely love wild burros, its vital to understand the critical crisis wild asses face throughout the world today as all of the species cited above have been in some way listed as either Vulnerable, Threatened, Critically Endangered or possibly Extinct.

    While this may seem a little boring to those of us who merely love wild burros, its vital to understand the critical crisis wild asses face throughout the world today as all of the species cited above have been in some way listed as either Vulnerable, Threatened, Critically Endangered or possibly Extinct.

    While the BLM has been “managing” wild burro herds for over three decades, almost no studies have been compiled on wild burros in general or of their individual herds – they are just “lumped in” with wild horses on every level.

    What limited historical data and studies has been done regarding wild burros has primarily been compiled by those interested in promoting big game species such as bighorn sheep who flourish in similar habitats as our own wild asses.

    Needless to say, these “authoritative opinions” always finds wild burros a great threat to any species and habitat; no matter how many centuries wild burro herds have been documented in the area, totally naturalized and co-existing in harmony within those ecosystems.

    In July 2000, Patricia Moehlman, Chairwoman of the Species Survival Commission and Equid Specialist for the World Conservation Union appealed to BLM to initiate more studies of our American wild asses in efforts to obtain relevant information for critically endangered asses throughout the world.

    However, the BLM had just released their “Strategy to Achieve and Manage Wild Burros at Appropriate Management Levels” in June of 2000, which authorized wild burro populations to be slashed nationally by at least 66%, despite their “federally protected status” – Dr. Moehlmans appeal for help was ignored. (1)
    While studies on wild asses stated their reproduction rate was only 4% in good years,
    the BLM has applied their “wild horse reproduction rate” of 20% per year (also in serious question) to wild burros as well.

    April 7, 2015
  • Louie C

    Managing for Extinction” Shortcomings of the Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Program by the Animal Welfare Institute

    You can purchase the booklet for $2 andt you can also read it for free online here: https://thecloudfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/managing-for-extinction.pdf
    https://awionline.org/store/catalog/animal-welfare-publications/wildlife/managing-extinction-shortcomings-bureau-land-mana

    April 7, 2015
  • Louie C

    The few remaining Wild Burros have the same enemy as the Wild Horses…..their Legal Herd Management Areas are coveted by very powerful and wealthy private and/or corporate interests. The Wild Burros have never gotten as much attention as the Wild Horses. They have just quietly disappeared.

    Less Than 10%
    http://americanherds.blogspot.com/2007/12/less-than-10.html

    Wild burros were once considered both an icon and mascot of the American West

    California also once loved their burros so much, they declared them the state mascot and before the Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act passed in 1971, wild burros were already protected from being harassed or killed under their California Fish & Game Code, protection which still stands today…..in theory.

    These days, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife cites them only as “feral asses” instead of wildlife as they once did and the careful observer will note that almost all the studies provided in their feral ass description used to justify wild burros being destructive to habitat were written by the Desert Bighorn Council…..imagine that.

    At the time the California Desert Conservation Area Plan passed in 1980, protected burro habitat through the BLM totaled over 3.5 million acres with over 2,700 wild burros approved to maintain the thriving ecological balance.

    This same area today has less than 300k acres of habitat remaining and only 229 or less wild burros are now considered appropriate – a 90% reduction in both habitat and population despite their supposed federal and state “protected status”.

    Now…..California has 3 wild burro herds remaining – only 345 wild burros are allowed statewide on public lands before they are considered “excessive”, a threat to the habitat and consequently removed.

    April 7, 2015
  • I was at both of the meetings held and no questions were allowed from the attendees. We were allowed to go up to individual BLM employees and ask our questions, but of course the other attendees would not benefit from the question or the answer. When Simone Netherlands of Respect4horses offered to give her perspective to the one news organization asked to attend we were told there was only one side to the story and he was not interested in hearing from burro advocates. So we have done our homework. Are you aware that the BLM count of Black Mountain HMA was just over 700 burros in 2013? Thus, their count just one and half years later of 1600-1800 burros means that every burro including the jacks must have had twins. The BLM is going to zero out Golden Valley near Kingman and they are taking away the NE portion of the HMA as well. I was under the impression that the area was in drought too, however they have had an inordinate amount of rain in the area due to influences wind currents from the south. Tell me another lie. I’ll seek the truth.

    April 10, 2015
  • Elaine Brown

    Burros are native wildlife.

    April 10, 2015
  • Louie C

    I posted three comments on
    the Mojave Valley Daily News website
    NONE of my comments were published.
    There appears to be a “news black-out”?

    April 10, 2015
  • Louie C

    Wild Burros of the Black Mountains
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uPorL42iJ4

    April 11, 2015