BLM to talk wild horses Sept. 2-3
Protect The Harvest Urges Citizens To Demand Answers at Bureau of Land Management’s September Meeting
COLUMBIA, MO – 1 September 2015 – Protect The Harvest, a national pro-agriculture coalition, is urging citizens to attend the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse Advisory Board meeting that will take place on Sept. 2-3, 2015 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; and demand answers for the agency’s anti-rancher policies as well as its mismanagement of America’s wild horse population.
“At the behest of a small group of animal liberation activists, the Bureau of Land Management is waging a war of attrition against American ranchers in the West,” explained Brian Klippenstein, Executive Director of Protect The Harvest. “They are stripping away the lawful land and water rights of honest ranchers under the guise of protecting wild horses. The sad punchline is that their policies are actually endangering the very horses they claim to defend.”
Since 1971 the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has been in charge of controlling the feral horse population. In recent years, the BLM has reduced its gathering of wild horses, often at the urging of animal rights activists. As a result, America’s feral horse population has doubled over the last four years, putting added strain on an already taxed ecosystem. In order to provide room and resources for the newly-released feral horses, the BLM has begun taking land and water rights away from American ranchers.
“Instead of upholding its statutory duties to keep the size of the feral horse population under control in the federally designated Horse Management areas, the BLM is driving ranchers from their grazing allotments and attempting to confiscate water rights without any due process,” explained Kevin Borba, a Nevada rancher. “It’s time to hold the federal bureaucracy accountable for its woeful management of federally administered land.”
Despite its stated intentions, the BLM’s activities are reportedly endangering the health and safety of the wild horse population.
“The only water and food available for horses in the West, comes from the decades-long efforts of ranchers in the area to work the land and develop water sources,” Borba said. “By driving ranchers off the federally administered land they’ve been allowed to work all of these years, you’re actually making it harder for these feral horses to keep from starving or dying of thirst.”
The BLM’s Wild Horse Advisory Board is holding meetings in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on Sept. 2-3, 2015 at the Sheraton Oklahoma City Downton Hotel. The public can address the board on Thursday Sept. 3 from 10:30 a.m. to noon but must register in person with the BLM by 10:15 a.m. that day. Protect The Harvest is planning to have a presence at the meeting and hopes other citizens will come out and demand answers from the federal bureaucracy.
“It’s time to demand accountability and responsibility from this federal bureaucracy that is trying to cover up its own failings by punishing the hard working farming and ranching families of the American frontier,” Klippenstein concluded. “The BLM has been bullied into a plan that is bad for horses, bad for the land, bad for ranchers, and good for nothing.” F
–Protect The Harvest
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