Breaking, just moments ago Wild Horse Education (WHE) filed litigation against the newly approved off-limits to the public facility in Winnemucca Nevada.
On November 3, 2021, the BLM approved an off-limits to the public facility on 100 acres of private land to house as many as 4000 wild horses and burros. Not only is the acreage way too small to accommodate such a large number of animals, the area is prone to some flooding. With 4000 animals on-site, the area is likely to become a mud pit for at least part of the year.
“The BLM is notorious for failing to provide real oversight for any program; on-range, off-range, Adoption Incentive Program, sales, etc.” stated Laura Leigh, President of Wild Horse Education. “I have seen horrific conditions and the public provides a tangible avenue for oversight for wild horses and burros. Those conditions changed because of public oversight, not proactive agency action. Cutting out the public, simply because they say they can and do, does not make it acceptable under the U.S. Constitution.”
“The well-being of wild horses and burros is at the heart of the work of WHE,” said Marie Milliman, WHE CAWP team, “Engaging both policy change, and inappropriate treatment as it happens, is essential to effective advocacy for the public resource, wild horses and burros. Cutting out public access is cutting out the ability to advocate for the public interest. No other stakeholder would be subjected to this type of prohibition.”
Recently issues involving treatment at the Canon City (off-limits facility) hit the news because wild horses captured last year coming out of the facility for adoption had marked deterioration in condition since capture.
Wild horses that have, or been exposed to, Pigeon Fever are being moved, branded, gelded in a facility we can see from the outside. We have to file a FOIA just to get shipping manifests and vet reports.
“The lack of transparency, contradictory information from the agency itself, placing wild horses and burros off-limits to view, creates an untenable environment for both wild horses/burros and the public.” continued Leigh, “The facilities are simply being approved to continue the BLM 2020 plan of controversial mass removals. Approving 4000 wild horses on 100 acres is an overcrowded feedlot. Prohibiting the public from viewing the consequence is obscene.”
In addition to the agency failing to address serious First Amendment issues, the agency failed to adequately respond to environmental concerns.
We will update you with more information on this filing, and other projects, soon. Our team is very busy.
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Categories: Wild Horse Education
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