God first made Man. He thought better of it and made Woman. When He got
time He made the Horse, which has the courage and spirit of Man and the
beauty and grace of Woman.
Save Our Wild Horse
Taking action to save our wild horses
The battle for our wild horses will be won in the court of public
opinion: the government needs to face a sustained public outcry over its
wild horse management practices. Did you know that Congress counts each
letter received as the opinion of ten people?
Contact Your Legislators in D.C.
Make sure to include your full name and address and to ask for a response on how your representative intends to address your concerns. Be firm but courteous.
Letters to Representatives should be addressed to: /The Honorable [Name Here], U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, DC 20515/. Letters to Senators should be addressed to: /The Honorable [Name Here], U.S. Senate, Washington, DC 20510/. Letters sent via U.S. mail make a stronger statement than emails but are subject to significant delays due to concerns over anthrax. Therefore, we suggest sending your letters in both formats (faxes are also a good alternative). To find your members of Congress, call the Congressional Switchboard at 202.224.3121, or visit www.congress.org and enter your zip code.
Other Campaign Targets
Do not hesitate to let Bureau of Land Management officials know how you feel about their removal policy. Call 202.208.7351 or use this *web form* to denounce the continued mismanagement of our wild horses and request an in-the-wild management program.
Nevada Senator *Harry Reid* should also be urged to revise his position on wild horse management in his state. You can email him by clicking on his name above, or write him at
528 Hart Senate Office Building,
Washington, D.C. 20510-2803
Americans, as well as the international community, should let Nevada know that continued mismanagement of its wild horse herds will hurt tourism in the state. Contact the *Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority*,
3150 Paradise Rd,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
– ph: 702.892.0711
the *Nevada Commission on Tourism
401 North Carson Street
Carson City, NV 89701
Foreign supporters of America’s wild horses should also contact the president firstname.lastname@example.org *,
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
the *U.S. Office of Travel and Tourism* to let them know that they are very disappointed with the United States’ treatment of its wild horses and that they would be more likely to visit the country if they knew that healthy herds of wild horses still roamed the West.
*Call Your Federal Legislators’ District Offices*
Call your legislators’ district offices in your home area and ask to speak to the person handling the wild horse issue. If nobody is, tell staffers that you expect their office to look into this important issue.
Check with the district staffers regularly for updates. Again, the idea is to keep up the pressure. Click here and enter your zip code to find* phone numbers for your federal legislators’ *local district offices*.
Spread the Word
Do not let placating responses from government officials shake your confidence. The Talking points below will help you address and rebut common misconceptions. The fact is that solutions need to be implemented to secure a place for our wild herds in the American landscape. A Congressional inquiry into this issue is long overdue.
We trust that a concerned and active citizenry can affect federal legislation, even in the face of opposition from special-interest groups. Wild horse advocacy is actually considered one of the most efficient grassroots movements in the nation. This was confirmed in 2006 by several Members of Congress polled by the Institute for a Democratic Future.
In 1971, it was an unprecedented letter-writing campaign conducted by schoolchildren across the country that became instrumental in securing the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act. Some of the letters were eloquent in their simplicity, showing more wisdom and common sense than all of the testimony of the scientists and wildlife managers combined.
Wild horses comprise a minute fraction of grazing animals on public lands. When the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act was passed in 1971, Congress stated that “wild horses and burros are fast disappearing from the American scene.” Since then, population levels have been slashed by about half, to less than 25,000 animals. To evaluate population levels and justify round-ups, BLM estimates an annual population increase rate of about 20%. This unsubstantiated number appears grossly inflated when compared to the *National Academy of Sciences’ *estimate of a 10% annual population increase rate.
The main cause of degradation of public lands is livestock use, not wild horses. Cows graze within a mile of water, while wild horses are highly mobile, grazing from five to ten miles from water, at higher elevations, on steeper slopes, and in more rugged terrain. A congressionally-mandated study by the National Academy of Sciences found that wild horse forage use remains a small fraction of cattle forage use on public ranges. Private livestock outnumber wild horses at least 200 to 1 on public lands.
The majority of wild horses captured are in good condition. Despite federal protection, wild horses have been relegated to the most inhospitable areas of the range. Still, they have adapted and survived. Cattle fencing on public lands can prevent horses from accessing scarce natural water sources and disrupt their widespread grazing patterns. In such instances, better in-the-wild management is the answer, rather than costly and traumatic round-ups.
In-the-wild management would save millions of tax-dollars. BLM’s wild horse and burro budget was increased by 50% in 2001, then by another third in 2005, to fund a massive removal campaign. It costs as much as 3,000 of our tax-dollars to remove and process a single wild horse for adoption. A 2004 USGS study found that in-the-wild use of contraceptive measures alone would save 7.7 million tax-dollars annually.
Modern molecular biology has shown wild horses to be a reintroduced native North American wildlife species. Horses reintroduced by the Spanish were genetically equivalent to those that had gone extinct in North America 12 to 11 thousand years prior. The American wild horse evolved over the past 500 years and adapted to the same ecological niche as its native ancestors had once thrived in.
On behalf of the horses, thank you for your support