Comments Needed for the Challis Herd
Dear Wild Horse & Burro Defenders;
Idaho has very few wild horses left, and they need your help. Some of you are probably even thinking: Idaho has wild horses? Yes, but not very many. According to BLM’s own data, there are fewer than 500 wild horses left in the entire state. The Challis Herd Management Area (HMA) is Idaho’s largest remaining wild horse population, and BLM wants to reduce the herd down to only 185 horses on over 160,000 acres.
BLM is currently soliciting the public’s comments for a scoping period regarding a helicopter roundup that would occur this fall. Discussion topics include “reducing population growth by fertility control vaccines, modifying sex ratios, and gelding [emphasis added].”
We’re asking you to submit your comments to BLM’s scoping letter, which is available here. Gelding of wild horse stallions and returning them to the range is something that should never occur. Geldings have no role in wild horse society. Sex skewing promotes social unrest, which destabilizes the family structure and promotes more breeding and reproduction.
Below is a sample letter with bullet points. Please use your own polite words.
Comments must be submitted by Monday, March 5th, no later that the close of business day at 4:30 Mountain Time.
Comments can be submitted via mail to:
Todd Kuck, Field Manager
BLM Challis Field Office
1151 Blue Mountain Road
Challis, ID 83226
Or via email at: BLM_ID_ChallisOffice@blm.gov with “Proposed wild horse gather comments” in the subject line.
We also encourage you to submit comments to the Idaho State Director Steven Ellis: firstname.lastname@example.org, the Challis Field Manager Todd Kuck: email@example.com, and the Challis Rangeland Management Specialist, Kevin Llyod: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Look at alternatives that allow the wild horses to remain on their ranges with their families.
– Allocate more forage to Wild Horses
– Reduce livestock which is within BLM’s full authority
– Focus on range improvements (i.e. water guzzlers, noxious/invasive weed treatment)
- Consider the use of the one-year reversible, field-dartable version of PZP
- Do not geld any wild horse stallions
- Do not consider skewing sex ratios which will only cause social disruption and injury
- Bait trapping should be considered in lieu of helicopter stampedes
- An accurate, current census using the most up-to-date technology should be included in the NEPA document
- Standard Operating Procedures should include:
– Temperature & distance parameters if helicopter stampedes are conducted
– No removal of older animals