Breaking! Legal Action filed against massive livestock grazing scheme in the Desatoya HMA.
Yesterday, Wild Horse Education (WHE) joined WildLands Defense and doubled down on our efforts to protect the Desatoya herd. The groups took legal action against the Edwards Creek, Carson and Porter Canyon Allotments impedes wild horses from freely moving in the HMA, fences wild horses off of waters, an “outcome based” grazing dynamic that was part of grazing regulation changes never finalized, unspecified “temporary fencing” and more.
The complaint states “… to turn off and manipulate water and fencing or otherwise interfere with or cut off wildlife and Wild Horse access to essential resources, and other activities authorized under the FD (finalized decision), including the deficient EA analysis of vegetation treatments.” The massive stocking (10,728 AUMs) rates are unspecified and timing, intensity and duration can change randomly and without notice.
“The lack of actual BLM management oversight and control in the EA is obscene,” stated Katie Fite, Director of WildLands Defense, “and it violates FLPMA’s sensitive species policy, the Wild Horse and Burro Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. There will be, not ‘might be,’ grave impacts to Greater sage-grouse, Pinyon Jay, Pygmy Rabbit, numerous species of declining migratory birds.”
“This decision will enable rampant damage and destruction of the ecological conditions and ecological balance in the HMA.” stated Leigh, President of Wild Horse Education,”This monstrosity allows the permittee to restrict Wild Horse access from crucial resources and basically allows livestock grazing to overwhelmingly dominate public lands, and to destroy wildlife/wild horse habitat with the blessing of BLM.”
The context of the decision is highly significant – spanning a million acres of public lands with a host of declining sensitive species including Sage-grouse, Pygmy Rabbit, Ferruginous Hawk, Pinyon Jay> Lahontan Cutthroat Trout, the fate of 181 lentic areas, and rare plants, as well as wild horses, in this very arid landscape. This decision(s) will worsen the chokehold held by the livestock industry on these public lands – where grazing is already by far the dominant land use. This region faces unprecedented climate change stress, grazing and deforestation will make this even worse.
The over 100 page filing but the groups asks the court to require the BLM to a Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and make an honest effort to evaluate the massive number of actions they intend to approve for the permittee.
Yesterdays filing is the second the groups have filed in the Desatoya area. In April the organizations filed directly against the inadequate removal EA the agency approved for the Desatoya herd.
One of the absurd claims in the wild horse EA is that wild horses are on range all year and therefore responsible for more damage than livestock, even though livestock outnumbers wild horses (in some areas) by 100 to 1. In Desatoya the livestock are out all year. Yet BLM plans to slam the population of wild horses way down to 127. BLM also plans to experiment with a mishmash of IUDs and fertility control substances and give away the remaining rangeland to litany of cow projects during a climate disaster.
Both legal actions are now active for Desatoya: one directly against the plan for wilds horses and one against the massive give away to livestock.
Help keep us in the fight.
Categories: Wild Horse Education