Thursday, February 24, 2005
Wild Horse Protection Sought
Federal law change could doom animals to Europe's dinner tables--By David Kihara...Las Vegas Sun, Feb. 23...<
'Thousands of previously protected wild horses and burros in Nevada and across the country are currently in danger of being sold to slaughterhouses despite vocal protests to keep the treasured 'symbols of the West' from ending up on dinner tables in Europe.
One group protesting the move, the National Wild Horse Association based in Nevada, held a rally on Tuesday at the West Charleston Library to bring awareness to recent changes in the federal law that previously shielded the wild horses from being sold to slaughterhouses.
'We need to ensure that these wild horses remain protected and do not get sent to the slaughterhouses,' said Laurie Howard, vice president of the NWHA, at the West Charleston Library.
She was joined by state Sen. Dina Titus, actress Theresa Russell and more than 100 wild horse enthusiasts.
Almost 19,000 wild horses and burros roam on public lands in Nevada, and an estimated 37,000 wild horses and burros are currently living on public lands across the country.
Because Nevada is home to the majority of wild horses across the country, 'the wild horses have come to be recognized as symbols of Nevada,' Titus said.
The threat to the more than 8,400 wild horses currently managed by the Bureau of Land Management came last November, when U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., slipped an amendment into the federal omnibus bill that allows the BLM to sell the wild horses.
Known as the 'Burns amendment,' the revision targets the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act and strips away previous prohibitions against selling the wild horses.
The amendment now allows the BLM to sell 'without limit' wild horses that are 10 years old or have not been successfully adopted on three tries. It targets approximately 8,400 wild horses currently held in dozens of BLM managed long- or short-term holding facilities.
There are about 24,000 wild horses and burros in long and short-term holding facilities. The BLM gathered the horses as part of its land- management policy, which is aimed at controlling the population of wild horses, wild life and livestock on public lands.
The greatest danger under this new amendment, which the NWHA refers to as the 'slaughter bill,' is that the horses will be sold to crooked horse traders who will sell the animals to one of three slaughterhouses in America that package and sell the meat to France, Belgium or Japan, opponents of the bill said.
'The horses are now subject to public auction and slaughter,' said Robin Lohnes, executive director of the Wash. D.C.-based American Horse Protection Association, who spoke at the rally.
Although the BLM has not yet sold any of the wild horses and is giving assurances that it will first attempt to find safe and appropriate homes for the animals, Lohnes said the danger remains.
Besides bringing awareness to the plight of the wild horses, the NWHA also wanted to raise support for legislation in the House looking to restore the previous protections.
The bill, introduced recently by Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W. Va., is co-sponsored by several lawmakers including both democrats and republicans.
One person who wants to see those safeguards restored is Teri Eagle, who owns two wild horses in Las Vegas and attended the rally.
'The (Burns amendment) wasn't ever presented to the public,' she said.
Eagle, who lives on a 1 1/2 acres lot south of Las Vegas Boulevard, said she has had a lifelong love of horses, even as a child growing up in Miami. She moved to Nevada 45 years ago.
Last year, she adopted another wild horse because she promised her 10-year-old granddaughter that she would get her one.
'They are amazing animals,' she said."
Rally to Save Nevada's Wild Horses
by Atle Erlingsson, Reporter, KLAS, Las Vegas...
"A battle is underway to save the lives of thousands of wild horses who may be headed to slaughter houses instead of being adopted out.
The horses are rounded up because ranchers say the animals are eating the grass meant for their cattle. For decades, the horses have been slowly adopted out. But just weeks ago, a Montana senator slipped wording into a federal budget bill allowing for the horses to be sold to slaughter houses.
Now, horse lovers are fighting to get that secret bill overturned. Courageous mustangs are the symbols of Nevada's wild wild west.
The Bureau of Land Management captured 18-month old Wacko near Nellis Air Base. Wes Canaday adopted her and has slowly trained Wacko to be a loving horse.
"With a horse, you really have to put the time in. And the more time you put in, the more you get out of them," said Wes Canaday, who adopted Wacko. Without adoption, Wacko would be one of more than 8,000 horses currently in federal holding facilities.
Jerry Reynoldson with the National Wild Horse Association says his group and others have long helped the government round up these mustangs. Now they feel betrayed.
"The horses were gathered, many of them, most of them, in Nevada, and moved to those long-term holding facilities with the understanding they'd live their lives out there," Reynoldson said. Under new legislation, which overturns a 30-year-old law protecting the horses, they are now available for sale.
Likely they will end up in slaughter houses with their meat sent to foreign countries. More than 150 horse lovers attended an National Wild Horse Association rally demanding the law be overturned.
They say the mustangs should not be treated secondary to the cattle they share open land with. But the government says the horse population is booming out of control. Even though there are only 37,000 mustangs nationwide mixed in with millions and millions of cattle.
Canaday wants the horses saved and given a new lease on life. A new federal bill has been introduced to overturn the law. It will likely be an uphill battle so the National Wild Horse Association is working hard to rally support and sway legislators into supporting it."
Wednesday, February 23, 2005
Letters from America...
Wild horses...It's all about greed...by Chris Heyde, National Horse Protection Coalition - Montana Standard, Feb. 22, 2005
"There are so many misstatements in the Sunday article "Saving icons of the West," I don't know where to begin, but that is expected when you only interview the myth spreaders.
It is unfortunate that anyone gives either Merle Edsall or John Falen any serious consideration. Both are known for spinning a wonderful tale and now the wild horse and American taxpayer are caught in the middle of their make believe world.
Too many horses? That is a sad joke that when really examined doesn't hold water. Ranchers aren't having to remove their cattle for any reason, but the horse is facing the brunt of the issue.
The BLM manages over 250 million acres of land and for some reason, a few people are trying to make you believe that 37,000 or so wild horses can't live there while millions of cattle graze away.
Just think about the numbers for a second. Only 3 percent of all beef consumed in the U.S. and sold abroad is raised on public lands. Out of this, millionaires, billionaires and corporations hold most of the grazing permits. Talk about destruction.
Even the federal government disputes the claim that wild horses are a problem, as reported in the 1990 General Accounting Office study entitled "Improvements Needed in Federal Wild Horse Program." The study was a clear and strong declaration redeeming wild horses and can be summed up by this sentence, "... the primary cause of the degradation in rangeland resources is poorly managed domestic (primarily cattle and sheep) livestock." The real problem is greed. Mr. Falen wants all of the land and all of the federal taxpayer subsidy for himself while Mr. Edsall wants to make a profit off of our national treasures. Neither cares about horses or the condition of the range.
As for Sen. Conrad Burns? Who knows. He claims it is about saving money, but then he ignores the real waste of taxpayer dollars doled out each year under the federal grazing program.
A program that wastes $300-$500 million of our hard earned taxpayer dollars each year. Even the Missoulian newspaper noted, "The state made famous for its wanton slaughter of Yellowstone National Park's bison as they struggle to reach winter range now has a senator who wants to feed enduring symbols of the Wild West to Frenchmen." Horses, unlike cattle, aren't sedentary animals. Hence the name of the bill Sen. Burns quietly gutted behind closed doors — Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros act of 1971. Why didn't he do this in the public eye? Because he knew he would fail if the facts were presented.
It is about time every taxpaying American citizen took notice at how a few greedy individuals are destroying public lands, eliminating wild horses which are a natural treasure and defrauding everyone for millions of dollars a year. This is the real problem and we shouldn't be distracted by a few out to profit."
Chris Heyde, Executive Director National Horse Protection Coalition P.O. Box 1252, Alexandria, Va.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
More and more reporters looking for the "real story"...
Wild Horses Future Threatened, George Knapp, KLAS, Las Vegas...
"Wild horse advocates are bracing for what they say could be the slaughter of thousands of horses now being held in government sanctuaries.
More than half of the nation's wild horses live in Nevada, but after decades of protection and management, the herds are threatened by a new congressional policy that was adopted with no public debate.
One hundred years ago, two million wild horses roamed the American West. Today there are about 36,000. They survived largely because of vocal political efforts by Nevada' wild horse Annie to stop brutal roundups and wholesale slaughter.
Late last year, Congress obliterated those protections. The vote was taken at night on a weekend and without a word of public debate.
'It's a betrayal,' said horse advocate Jerry Reynoldson. He says the quickie decision to sell off wild horses blind-sided everyone who works with the animals. A year ago this month, Reynoldson was in talks with the Bureau of Land Management in Washington and Nevada about plans to revamp the troubled [program].
BLM told him the idea for a pilot horse adoption program sounded great. But behind the scenes, ranching interests were working on a more permanent solution. Allowing the sale of horses to whomever makes it all but certain that Nevada horses will end up on dinner plates in France and Japan, and someone will make a lot of money sending them there.
'Without a doubt there are people who've believed for a long time these horses should be sent to the slaughterhouse. It's all they're good for,' Reynoldson said. He adds the real betrayal stems from what hasn't been done by...
In 2001, the bureau paid for a massive study of the wild horse program. The study said the way to resolve the backlog of horses in the system was to make the adoptions program work. BLM is great at rounding up horses, not so great at finding them homes. The study called for a national marketing and education campaign. It identified potential adopters.
Most importantly, it advised taking the program out of its eastern states office, getting it closer to where the horses are, meaning, out west. Nevada for example, has more than 50-percent of the horses, but gets only 15-percent of the program's budget, with almost nothing for adoptions.
BLM paid lip service to a few ideas from the study, but has shown no interest in taking the big steps. And while there have been no sales to slaughterhouses yet; BLM has already identified which horses could be the first to go.
'If they think they are gonna haul a bunch of horses off to the the slaughterhouse in the dark of night and no one will ever know about it, it will not happen that way. This has the potential to get really ugly,' Reynoldson."
Thursday, February 17, 2005
Bush--Riding the Mustang to Death
Mustang Sallies--Can America's wild horses survive another four years of Bush?...By Deanne Stillman, Slate, Feb. 16
"George W. Bush styles himself a cowboy president. One job of cowboys is to claim the American wilderness for ranching, so it's little surprise the Bush administration is behind a new effort to suppress—and perhaps slaughter—one of the last symbols of untamed America: our wild horses.
Since 1971, wild horses and burros have been federally protected by the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Protection Act, a pitched battle piece of legislation won in 1971 by Velma Johnston, aka Wild Horse Annie. (Wild Horse Annie was an intrepid Nevada character who, after seeing blood spilling out of a truck that was hauling mustangs to the slaughterhouse, campaigned for the act.) Legend had it that, apart from the war in Vietnam, Congress received more mail about protecting wild horses than about any other issue in its history.
Now the trucks that caught Wild Horse Annie's attention may be revving their engines again, thanks to a stealth rider attached in November to a federal spending bill. The new law, pushed by ranching interests, Western senators, and Bush's Department of the Interior, probably condemns thousands of wild horses to the slaughterhouse—where they're likely to be made into dinner for Europeans.
Wild horses were indigenous to North America, populating this continent before the Ice Age. They moved north across the Bering land bridge, fanned out from Siberia to the rest of Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, then became extinct here. When Europeans reintroduced horses to the Americas in the 16th century, some escaped and formed wild herds. By 1900, there were 2 million wild horses in America. Their major predators, such as the mountain lion, were all but wiped out, and for more than a century their biggest enemy has been man. Horse roundups and massacres went unchecked for decades until Wild Horse Annie came along.
In 1971, when the act was passed and signed by Richard Nixon, perhaps 50,000 horses remained, according to the Bureau of Land Management, the Department of Interior agency in charge of them. It's hard to count horses, but today, according to the BLM, there are 36,000 on public lands. Wild horse advocates dispute that number and say there are no more than 20,000 still roaming the range. Everyone agrees that the numbers are dwindling and most of the horses are in Nevada, which is where the wild mustang is making its last stand. (The state gives the mustang props everywhere—brothels name themselves after it, downtown Vegas features wild horse statues, its picture hangs in every dive bar in the desert—but in real life, it gets no respect.)
Today's fight over wild horses is a strange battle, in which cattlemen and ranchers—the traditional enemies of the wild horse—have inadvertently teamed up with environmental groups, which generally regard wild horses as an invasive, non-native species. Along with the oil and gas lobbies, the ranching industry largely determines BLM policy toward public lands, which is where wild horses and burros roam. Many ranchers who lease grazing land from the BLM for meager fees—a situation opponents call 'welfare ranching'—see wild horses as pests that destroy the land and take food from cattle, although study after study indicates that cattle do more damage to the range than horses. Moreover, public lands west of the Mississippi, which is where most of the country's remaining wild horses live, supply just 3 percent of our beef.
Under a myriad of management schemes and subsequent legislation, the 1971 law meant to protect the horses has been gradually weakened in order to deal with what the BLM says are "excess" horses. The BLM established 'herd management areas' and 'appropriate management levels' aimed not, as the act mandated, at preserving wild horses but removing more and more horses from the range. In 1971, there were 303 herd management areas; today there are 201. According to advocates who gathered recently for a conference in Carson City, Nev., the BLM has been grabbing small herds of horses in surprise sweeps. Periodically, the BLM enforces a policy of "zeroing out" horses, which means completely eliminating horses from a particular herd management area, thus opening it up to drilling and the introduction of more cattle.
Under Bush, slow-motion neglect has been replaced by a vigorous assault on mustangs. The BLM's wild horse removal policy has escalated ferociously. The 'gathers,' as the BLM calls them, are carried out by helicopter and are reminiscent of The Misfits, the Marilyn Monroe movie about the cruel mustang roundups outside Reno in the 1950s and '60s. Although helicopter roundups aren't as traumatic for the horses as the fixed-wing aircraft roundups depicted in The Misfits, horses can instinctively run themselves to the point of injury, if not death. I witnessed several roundups this summer and saw foals being trampled by frightened mares and stallions once they were inside cramped holding pens.
Horses that survive the roundups face a murky future in the BLM's cute-in-name-only adopt-a-horse program. For $125, you can buy a wild horse at one of the BLM's adoption events held periodically around the country. The BLM tries to make the adoption easy, providing information on mustang training clinics, and lately even in some states offering to drive the horse to you at no cost. Full ownership is not granted for one year, a period in which the BLM may make surprise inspection visits. The problem is that there are many more horses in BLM pipelines than there are adopters, yet the roundups continue. In 2004, almost 4,000 wild horses and burros were removed from Nevada public land. An additional 5,000 at the very least are slated to go this year; the goal is to cut the wild horse population in half by the end of 2005. Wild horse advocates fear that if the government even comes close to these figures, the herds that roam the range will no longer have the numbers to sustain themselves.
But the November rider represents the gravest threat yet to the remaining mustangs—and a triumph for the cattle industry. Many senators and representatives did not know that Montana Sen. Conrad Burns had attached the last-minute rider to the 2005 federal appropriations bill when they approved it before their Christmas break.
The rider probably spells doom for many of the 14,000 wild horses that languish in BLM facilities because they have not been adopted—and also endangers horses rounded up in the future. According to the new law, which took effect in January after Bush signed it in December, any horse that is older than 10 (not old for a horse) or has not been adopted after three tries through the poorly advertised adoption program can now be sold to the highest bidder. 'Highest bidder' generally means middlemen who resell the horses to slaughterhouses. The demand for horse meat comes from Europe, Japan, and Mexico, and as fear of mad cow disease escalates everywhere, the appetite for it increases. This combination of increased roundups and sales to meat-packers will devastate the remaining herds.
A few legislators are fighting back. On Jan. 25, Rep. Nick Rahall of West Virginia, the ranking Democrat on the House Resources Committee (which oversees wild horse policy on federal lands), introduced a piece of legislation along with Republican Rep. Ed Whitfield of Kentucky to overturn the Burns rider. "Very few icons of the West remain," Rahall said, 'and wild horses are certainly a symbol of the frontier era and our nation's spirit. To allow them to be slaughtered without exhausting all other options, such as adoption, is an affront to our history.'
Even if the horses aren't immediately sold to slaughterhouses, they face another potentially disturbing fate. They may be bought by a prominent Montana rancher named Merle Edsall, who has planned for months to 'repatriate' 10,000 wild horses to a "sanctuary" in Mexico. Edsall says he wants to build a wild horse tourist attraction, but once they move south of the border, it would be impossible to monitor what happens to them. Edsall may also have influenced the Burns rider. The language in the Burns rider was the exact same wording floated by Edsall at a meeting of the BLM's Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board last February in Phoenix.
Many wild horse advocates are hoping that the Rahall/Whitfield legislation will win additional sponsors and will be enacted quickly in the current Congressional session. But public lands ranchers are a powerful interest group. If the Burns rider remains as law and is carried out, our cowboy President—recently characterized by Burns as 'a man who earned his spurs'—may be remembered for eradicating the living symbol of the American West, the very horse he rode in on."
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
New bill could end U.S. horse slaughter
Two bills introduced to House of Representatives--Gerold Shelton - Senior Reporter, Northern Star
"Two new horse protection bills introduced to the U.S. House of Representatives could have serious implications for a local horse-slaughtering plant.
One bill, introduced to committee earlier this month, would ban horse slaughtering in the United States. Both bills were introduced to committees of the House earlier this month. [Editor's note: These bills are HR503, which would ban all horse slaughter and S297, which would reinstate wild horse protection preventing slaughter of wild horses and burros.]
Cavel International, a Belgium-based company, reopened in February 2004 after a March 2002 fire destroyed the DeKalb facility at 108 Harvestore Drive. Police suspected arson in the incident, which caused $2 million in damage, according to a September 2003 Northern Star article. Cavel slaughters horses for their meat, which is exported for consumption in Europe.
Last year, the bill had 228 co-sponsors, but the bill died in committee.
James Tucker, manager of Cavel International in DeKalb, said the bills were "a misguided effort at animal lawfare."
"They are not really about animal lawfare. They are a few people’s opinions about how horses should be euthanized," Tucker said. "In terms of legislation, I don’t feel the government should be deciding for horse owners how the owners dispose of their horses. If I was a farmer, I would be incensed if they said we have to put our animals down in a certain way."
Representatives from local protest groups said they support both of the new bills. Getting them passed would be ideal because it would end horse slaughter in the United States.
"Last year we had more than enough co-sponsors to support the bill," said Gwen Dodt, president of the NIU chapter of the National Student Horse Protection Coalition. "Now we have to get the support again. We don’t have the money the other side has."
Another bill would reinstate a ban on the sale of wild horses and burros. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Resources. A ban on the sale of wild horses and burros was lifted last year after a bill was attached to the 2005 Federal Appropriations Bill, which was signed into law by President George W. Bush.
"We don’t really want wild horses," Tucker said. "They are usually not good quality and there are really not many of them." [Editor's note: There is discrepancy on this issue. Read the article from THIS POST. In an interview with a horsemeat butcher in Europe, the butcher maintains that 'wild horse' is preferred over all other horses because the meat is drug-free. '...European horse butchers have no such worries about United States imports. 'They're wild horses,' said Märki, 'The taste (of their meat) is very, very good -- extra(ordinary).']
Tucker said there are only 30,000 to 40,000 wild horses in the United States, a small proportion compared to the 80,000 to 100,000 horses slaughtered for industry every year.
Despite criticism, business at the plant is doing well, he said.
"We look at our operation as a business that is operating in Illinois and has been for the last 18 years," Tucker said. "We operate a business that is recognized as a type of business that has existed in this country forever." [Editor's note: these slaughterhouses operate 'under the radar,' attracting as little attention as possible because Americans abhor the thought of eating horsemeat. Horses are viewed as companion animals in America. Some bring up the point that slaughtering horses is akin to slaughtering our homeless cats and dogs and sending them to the Vietnamese.]
The plant, which is one of three horse-slaughtering facilities in the United States, employs 40 people and has a kill capacity of 500 horses per week, he said.
Since the plant reopened, the police have not had any reports of vandalism or direct threats to Cavel, DeKalb Police Lt. Jim Kayes said.
Monday, February 14, 2005
BLM Hopes for Adopters with Good Intentions
"...More than 203,000 horses have been adopted through the Wild Horse & Burro Program since 1973. Last year, 6,660 horse were adopted.
...New legislation passed in December will force the Bureau of Land Management to sell every wild horse that is 10 years or older, or has proved unadoptable on three or more occasions.
Agency spokeswoman Celia Boddington said the law directly will impact 8,440 of the 14,000 wild horses living at 10 long-term, government holding facilities, six of which are in Oklahoma. With planning for the sales already under way, wild horse advocates said they fear the animals will be slaughtered and shipped to foreign meat markets.
'If you sell these horses without restrictions -- as the law is currently written -- it is very likely most of these horses will be sent to slaughterhouses for human consumption abroad,' said Californian Virginie Parant, founder of American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign. 'Now, because of the public outcry, the BLM has been slow in implementing these sales.'
This month, U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., introduced a bill which would restore old protections.
Citizens have been permitted to adopt a wild horse or burro from the agency's Wild Horse & Burro Program since 1973. The new law does not eliminate the adoption process, which still requires government field workers to inspect adopters for one year before they receive title to the horse or burro in their care.
...An estimated 37,000 mustangs wander public rangelands throughout the west. They share the public land with several million head of cattle, prompting some cattle ranchers to complain about overgrazing.
...Mark Robertson of Hugo isn't sure how he feels about the new law. He owns 12 horses through the agency's adoption program, and said he has seen the best and worst from those who have adopted.
'I know one guy who had adopted 50 of these wild horses,' Robertson said. 'Once they became his property, he cut off their heads and sold them. He made about $600 apiece. So people are always going to find loopholes.'
'As for me, we love these horses. My family and I love to take them on trail rides.'"
Sunday, February 13, 2005
Some lucky mustangs find homes...
Untamed hearts--JENNIFER BALDWIN, Californian staff writer...
"Sheryl Greenhouse became the mother of four on Saturday, and is expecting her fifth any day now. 'I'm so excited,' said the Oro Grande resident. 'It'll be my first baby on the ranch.'
Greenhouse is starting an equine sanctuary on her recently purchased 60-acre ranch near Victorville.
She selected her first adoptees -- two horses, one of which is pregnant, and two burros -- from about 400 wild mustangs and burros available from the Bureau of Land Management in Ridgecrest. The BLM's annual open adoption day came with an enticing deal: a $125 adoption fee and free delivery within 150 miles.
'If I could, I would take every single one of them,' said Greenhouse. 'They are beautiful. They are part of our heritage in our country.'
But with a new federal law mandating the BLM sell some of the country's wild horses and burros, many equine lovers fear the worst: that this symbol of America will be sold to slaughterhouses.
One gentleman at the adoption produced a copy of The Equestrian News, a Los Angeles-area publication.
'Wild Mustangs Face Final Hours,' the headline read. The story went on to say the law's passage "betrayed the animal that birthed this nation." Mustangs are not native to the United States, but are a cross-breed of European horses that escaped or were turned loose between the late 1400s and late 1800s and formed their own herds.
'These horses should not be slaughtered,' Greenhouse said. 'We're taking away their land and we need to take care of them.'
The legislation was tucked into the 2005 budget that President Bush signed two months ago. The law mandates that the BLM sell wild horses and burros that are more than 10 years old or that have been passed over for adoption three times. The BLM estimates there are about 8,400 equines that fit this description.
Doran Sanchez, spokesman for the BLM wild horse and burro adoption program, said most of those animals are being cared for with taxpayer money in sanctuaries in the Midwest.
While the BLM drafts regulations for selling the animals, the agency and horse advocates are contacting organizations to find alternative homes for the horses and burros.
Meanwhile, Sanchez promises the BLM's adoption program will remain unchanged, with its main goal to find good homes for the young horses and burros that have to be removed from wild herds to keep populations under control.
"These are such great animals. Their quality is not challenged. They make for great pleasure riding ... and they can run a domestic horse into the ground," he said.
The BLM estimates there are 37,000 wild horses and burros living on public lands in 11 western states. Since it started the adoption program in 1973, a little more than 215,000 of them have been adopted.
Each year, about 6,000 to 8,000 are rounded up so the herds don't destroy their habitat and create an unbalanced ecology.
'These animals reproduce about 20 to 30 percent each year, so by the following spring they've reproduced exactly what we've removed the previous year,' Sanchez said.
The wranglers focus on gathering horses and burros that are between 1 and 5 years old because they are more adoptable and easier to train. It takes two months for the horses to receive their vaccinations and health checks before they are ready for adoption.
Adopters must fill out applications and promise not to sell or give away the horse for one year. During that year, the BLM retains the title to the horse and only hands it over if the adopter passes inspection by Dennis Knippel, the state compliance officer.
Knippel personally visits every new adoptee at least once during the year. If he witnesses abuse or neglect, the BLM takes the animal back and puts it up for adoption again.
On Saturday, more than 100 people walked from corral to corral, imagining what it would be like to take the mustangs and burros home with them. Most of the horses were from herds in California and Nevada.
Some potential adopters looked for a certain color; others, a certain temperament.
Marcy Kittinger drove 100 miles from Oak Hills to find a trailhorse for her 7-year-old son Daniel. She chose a 2-year-old red mare with a white face.
'She appeared to be very calm and she'd look at you. She'd make eye contact with you,' Kittinger said.
Scott and Susan Davis of Lucerne Valley brought five of their daughters -- all redheads ages 6 to 16 -- to pick out three horses. The girls will be responsible for training, caring for and riding the mustangs, their dad said.
He was more concerned about securing the pipe corrals on their 10 acres than of the wild horses harming his girls.
'You just have to spend time with them,' he said. 'I expect these wild horses to have sweet dispositions.'
The 'gentling' process doesn't take very long, said Sue Borgards of Riverside, who has adopted four wild mustangs and was in Ridgecrest to adopt a burro and possibly another mare.
'We spend time with them just sitting in their stalls. We've been lucky. The last one we adopted, we had her for only three days and we were already in her stall brushing her,' said Borgards' daughter, Angelique Guy, who works as a wrangler in Arizona.
The pair said mustangs are the best horses they've found. They're hardy, healthy and strong. And the burros make great pets -- they're loving, make good companions for horses, and also keep intruders away with their hee-haw warnings.
'It's really cool knowing you're saving something out of the wild,' Guy said.
'It's American history. It's legend,' her mother said."
Friday, February 11, 2005
Latest Action Alert...
URGENT ACTION ALERT ON HORSE SLAUGHTER! AMERICAN HORSE SLAUGHTER PREVENTION ACT REINTRODUCED IN CONGRESS!
On February 1st, Representatives John Sweeney (R-NY), John Spratt (D-
SC) and Ed Whitfield (R-KY) introduced H.R. 503, the new version of
the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act.
This legislation, a new version of the former AHSPA which gained 228
cosponsors in the House of Representatives last year, would ban the
slaughter of horses for human comsuption as well as the exportation
of live horses intended for the same purpose. The bill has been
referred to the House Commitee on Energy and Commerce.
Inmediate action is needed in order to ensure the passage of this
vital legislation that would end once and for all the slaughter of
American horses, domestic or wild alike.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
1) ASK YOUR CONGRESSMAN TO COSPONSOR H.R. 503
Contact your US Representative and ask him to cosponsor H.R. 503. You should also contact ALL the members of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and request that they cosponsor H.R. 503 and urge them to quickly bring the bill to public hearing.
A list of the members of the House Committe on Energy and Commerce
with phone and fax numbers is available at http://energycommerce.house.gov/108/members/members.htm (Note that the site has not been updated yet).
To find out who your legislators are, go to
www.visi.com/juan/congress/index.html or www.congress.org
At the end of this message you will find a letter template you can
send to your Congressman regarding H.R. 503
Additional information about this bill can be found at:
Written letters and faxes are much more effective than emails. Calls
are also a good way to contact your legislators. Contact both DC and
Do not waste time; start writing, faxing and calling today! Forward
this alert to all your contacts and ask them to contact their
legislators asking them to cosponsor this bill.
2) CONTACT THE MEDIA ABOUT H.R. 503 AND HORSE SLAUGHTER.
Please, keep sending letters to the editor and story suggestions to your local and state papers, TV and radio stations as well as to the major national media networks about H.R. 503, the Rahall's bill to repeal the Burns' amendment (H.R. 297) and horse slaughter. Also, please forward the SAPL press release about H.R. 503 you can find posted below ("HR 503 Press Release") to as many media as possible, especially local. You will find media contact info on this website: http://newslink.org
It is also very important that you get the word out and tell everyone
you know about horse slaughter and the bills to ban it (H.R. 503) and
restore the protection to wild horses (H.R. 297). Please email this
message to all your friends!
Bush Cuts BLM Budget by $2.5 million
Bush won't back off on money grab...Pahrump Valley Times
"...Meanwhile, the BLM is proposing to reduce its wild horse and burro budget by $2.5 million at a time the agency is striving to reduce horse populations on public lands. The agency has requested additional money from Congress for the last six years to make up for shortfalls.
Ferguson said the BLM would be spending less money next year on housing horses in its long-term sanctuaries as it seeks to improve its adoption program..."
Organizations Call Out for Help
Foals, Yearlings and Mares Bound For Slaughter Need Help; National Group Protects Equines Young and Old from Slaughter...national news release from the Foal Rescue Foundation
"WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Feb. 10 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Today many of healthy horses, yearlings and foals will begin their journey to one of the three equine slaughterhouses where they will meet with a cruel and heinous death. Many people are still not aware horses are slaughtered in the US and have no idea of the cruelty involved.
Horses are sensitive, intelligent and compassionate creatures...They should not be crammed into trailers, denied food and water for long periods of time. They should not be unloaded at slaughterhouses with whips and electric prods into kill chutes. The captive bolt gun shot repeatedly into their flailing heads bring "screams" from their bodies never heard before by humane animal caregivers. Not to mention the ones that are NOT rendered unconscious and are awake as their throat is being slit, the vivisection beginning while they still breathe and their hides skinned from their body while they hang shackled form their hind legs...
...Over 50,000 horses are slaughtered each year; good horses, yearlings and foals are heinously slaughtered, enduring hours sometimes days of tortuous conditions so that they may be shipped overseas for human consumption. The slaughterhouses are in Texas and Illinois and all are foreign-owned companies.
...It is only through publicity that people can become aware of the fate of these poor unwanted animals and realize that there are people who care and are doing something about it. It is only through donations of money, time, goods and services that relocation and placement can work. It is heart-wrenching when there are 10 and you only have the funds for 5, those eyes looking at you begging for their life, the mothers and foals wondering why they are being ripped apart when their life together has just begun. As the mares are hauled away, their hearts broken, their bodies flailing in despair at the loss of their baby and there they are in the back of a truck without food or water on their way to the slaughterhouse unaware that as horrible as their life seems right now...it is about to get worse. The foals stay behind, crying for their mothers, wondering who will take care of them, who will love them, how will they live... "
Thursday, February 10, 2005
Horse Slaughterhouses: Voice Your Opinion
"Some Texas lawmakers are trying to stop the slaughter of horses for their meat. New Federal legislation threatens to shut down the last two horse slaughterhouses operating in the U.S. They're both in Texas. [Editor's note: a third slaughterhouse is located in Illinois.]
News 4 WOAI obtained shot inside a horse slaughterhouse. Click here to view video (we can only show a portion of this video because it's so graphic).
Texas Congressman Martin Frost says the inhumane treatment of horses must end.
Others argue horse slaughterhouses provide a way to dispose of ailing horses and create valuable food for foreign countries.
What do you think of the practice of slaughtering horses for their meat? Send us an email: NewsDesk@woai.com."
Retired Racehorses Deserve More than a Slaughterhouse Ending...
Ex-champions find a home at Millstone horse farm Examiner, Allentown, PA
"Founded in 1982, TRF aims to offer a humane alternative to the neglect, abuse and slaughter many former racehorses face, according to the organization’s mission statement.
...Double T Farm also works with TRF to provide horses to several U.S. prisons — including the Walkill Correctional Facility in New York, the Blackburn Correctional Complex in Kentucky, and the Charles H. Hickey School in Baltimore — for juvenile offenders.
According to the foundation’s Web site, 'Not only have the retired thoroughbreds found a safe and caring home, but the inmates who tend to them have reaped tremendous benefits. They learn a useful skill in horsemanship.'
However, Pikulski said some racehorse owners look the other way when their horse is in bad shape.”
'There’s always a guy around who says he will take the horse and give it to a little girl, while he actually will take it to the auction,' she said. 'The owners are relieved of a financial burden.'
...Klein said that many owners are not aware of alternatives such as the foundation, and that Double T Farm can help horses be adopted out and find second careers.
...For more information, call the foundation at (732) 957-0182, or visit the Web site at www.trfinc.org."
Tuesday, February 08, 2005
Slaughter Issue Teeters Despite Public Opinion...
Sen. Ensign says sides polarized in Congress on wild horse issues...(AP)
"...U.S. Sen. John Ensign says opposing sides on the question of what to do about wild horses are polarized on the issue in Congress, but he expects the new law allowing the sale of horses to survive.
He told an Elko audience he still is mulling his decision on efforts to derail the new law.
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., and Ed Whitfield, R-Ky., have introduced legislation to restore the federal prohibition on the commercial sale and slaughter of wild free-roaming horses and burros.
Ensign's comments came as the U.S. Bureau of Land Management continued a gathering of wild horses in southern Elko County and a portion of White Pine County.
The gathering reached 1,607 horses as of Thursday night, Elko BLM spokesman Mike Brown said.
Congress approved an amendment to an appropriations bill near the end of the last session to permit BLM to sell old wild horses and those that aren't adopted after three tries.
Critics fear the horses will be sold for slaughter, for their meat.
'Wild horses are a difficult issue we face,' Ensign, R-Nev., said.
He said one side sees the need to get many of the wild horses off the land, while the other side wants the government to take care of the animals at whatever the cost.
Federal resources are limited, said Ensign, who is a veterinarian.
BLM won't be selling horses any time soon, however, since the agency has to prepare new regulations and publish them, the agency reported earlier.
Those BLM is rounding up now will be put up for adoption, if they aren't turned back onto the Antelope Complex of herd management areas.
BLM's target is to gather 1,916 wild horses from the complex, and turn 440 of them back onto the land."
HORSE SLAUGHTER BILL REVISED
Congressman John Sweeney (R-NY) has re-introduced federal legislation to prohibit the slaughter of horses for human consumption...American Horse Council
"...Although the bill (H.R. 503) is drafted differently than the legislation introduced in the last Congress, it provides for the same result, the prohibition of the slaughter of horses for human consumption.
The bill has fifteen original co-sponsors, including Representatives Mary Bono (R-CA), Lois Capps (D-CA), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Mike Ferguson (R-NJ), Gene Green (D-TX), Frank Pallone (D-NJ), John Spratt (D-SC), Ed Whitfield (R-KY), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Christopher Cox (R-CA), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Elton Gallegly (R-CA), James Moran (D-VA), Christopher Shays (R-CT), Edolphus Towns (D-NY).
The bill introduced in the last Congress added a new section to the U.S. Code, rather than amending an existing law.
The new bill would amend the Horse Protection Act (HPA), which was enacted in 1970 to prohibit the showing, sale, or transporting for show or sale, of horses that have been subjected to a painful process known as “soring” to accentuate their gait.
The Animal & Plant Inspection Service (APHIS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture enforces the HPA.
The bill has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Last year’s legislation was referred to the House Agriculture Committee.
The legislation provides that Congress finds, among other things, that 'Horses and other equines are domestic animals that are used primarily for recreation, pleasure, and sport' and that the 'shipping, transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing, selling, or donation in intrastate commerce of horses and other equines to be slaughtered for human consumption, adversely affect and burden interstate and foreign commerce.'
Prohibitions and Penalties in the Bill Specifically, the bill amends the HPA 'to prohibit the shipping, transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing, selling, or donation of horses and other equines for slaughter for human consumption.'
Such activities would be made a violation of the HPA and subject any person who knowingly violates the Act to penalties of up to $3000 and/or one year in jail for the first offence and up to $5000 and/or two years in jail for a second offence.
An offender may also be subject to civil penalties of $2000 for each violation.
The legislation also gives the Secretary of Agriculture the authority to 'detain for examination, testing, or the taking of evidence' any horse which the Secretary has 'probable cause to believe is being shipped, transported, moved, delivered, received, possessed, purchased, sold, or donated in violation of' the prohibitions.
The bill authorizes $5 million for enforcement of the Act.
Those that would like to register their thoughts on the bill with their member of Congress can contact them at www.visi.com/juan/congress."
Monday, February 07, 2005
Horses should not be slaughtered for food in U.S.
Thumbs up to U.S. Rep. John Sweeney, R-Clifton Park, for reintroducing legislation to ban the slaughter of horses for human consumption...The Saratogian
"This is a town that loves horses -- for riding, racing and showing. We need to speak up against slaughterhouses in the United States that kill horses for shipment to Europe and Asia as food for humans.
Sweeney's legislation is endorsed by a number of groups, including the Humane Society, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Churchill Downs Inc. and Fasig-Tiption Co., which runs the horse auctions in Saratoga Springs and is the nation's oldest and most prestigious thoroughbred auction firm."
Let Your Representatives Know Your Position...
Let your Representatives know that we want them to co-sponsor HR 503... SIGN THE PETITION FOR THE NEWLY INTRODUCED HR 503
Text of petition:
HR 503 is a redrafted version of the 'American Horse Slaughter
HR 503 - To amend the Horse Protection Act to prohibit the shipping,
transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing,
selling, or donation of horses and other equines to be slaughtered for
human consumption, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Representative John E. Sweeney
Please also write, fax or call your representative today!
Sunday, February 06, 2005
BLM relies on adoption...
BLM puts focus on wild horse adoption Casper Star-Tribune, Feb. 06, 2005
"...That person will 'be asking some questions' of potential buyers, he said, but no specific questions have been outlined. Once a wild horse is sold, there will be no overseeing of its life, he said.
'We were told we cannot place those types of restrictions on it, because it is a private animal, he said.
He said the agency will look to animal groups to help place horses.
Patricia Fazio of the Wyoming Animal Network and past president of the Humane Federation of Wyoming said the new approach sounds better.
'That's one step in our direction, and I'm pleased with that,' she said. Still, she said there are a lot of unanswered questions.
'The problem is people can 'adopt' them then send them to slaughter,' Fazio said. 'I'm in favor of adoption, but I think it should be done the same way you adopt out a dog or a cat. If you do it properly, you do a home check. Make sure the person has never been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor animal cruelty. More work needs to be done up front....'"
Despite Idaho Alert, Family Pet Stolen and Slaughtered...
Read more about this beautiful 4 year-old Morab gelding that was stolen from his pasture, sold to a meat buyer and slaughtered before the family could track down their beloved pet... (Stolen Horse, Int'l.)
"Cimarron's story -On November 26, 2004 a beautiful four year old Morab gelding named Cimarron was stolen from his pasture.
...Due to the lack of enforcement of certain NYS Ag & Market rules and USDA regulations governing transport of horses without coggins as well as failure to prove ownership of the horse at consignment a young girl's best friend was cruelly slaughtered in his prime. Had proper protocol been observed this tragedy would never have happened as Cimarron would have been stopped at the in gate to Chambers."
BLM Sets Up Toll-Free Number to Spur More Adoptions...
Officials try to place horses....
..."Bureau of Land Management director Kathleen Clarke said the agency is looking to place wild horses in safe environments as it carries out a law Congress passed last fall to speed horse and burro sales.
'We have a law that we need to comply with, and we'd like to find positive ways to do that,' Clarke said.
The new law removed restrictions on wild horse sales, prompting criticism from activists that the animals sold by the BLM might end up in slaughterhouses.
The law allows the BLM to sell any horse older than 10 years of age and horses that have been put up for adoption three times without success. [Editor's note: According to European butchers who sell horsemeat, the ideal cut of meat is a horse that, a)has not been treated with medications (such as a wild horse) and, b)is 10 - 15 years of age. The meat is at its most tender at that age.]
BLM has contacted wild-horse groups and roughly a dozen Indian tribes to place more horses in private sanctuaries, Clarke said.
'We are casting our nets and trying to generate interest from all kinds of groups,' Clarke said. 'We want to do business with anyone who may be able to work with us.
*******The BLM next week will unveil a toll free phone number, 1-800-710-7597, and an e-mail at email@example.com to solicit proposals from the public, agency officials said. *******
Rights groups have lobbied the BLM to devise a policy to safeguard the horses. Government investigators in a 1990 report found that thousands of horses were killed when the agency waived adoption fees for large-scale adoptions during the 1980s.
With horse meat valued at $1 per pound, the average horse could fetch $1,200 at slaughter plants in Texas and Illinois that pack meat for sale in France and China, activists said.
'We feel it is very important to have a dialogue with the agency,' said Michael Markarian, vice president at the Humane Society of the United States.
But Markarian said few groups have the resources to care for large numbers of horses.
'We're not in the position of privately funding new sanctuaries to clean up the government's mess,' Markarian said. 'We need the BLM to let the wild horses roam freely on the public lands. The public lands should be viewed as sanctuaries for these horses, not grazing allotments for ranchers.'
Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., said last week the new law will force BLM to bolster its troubled adoption program.
'BLM has failed in the past because of the limitations placed on them,' said Rachel Buzzetti, executive director of the Nevada Cattlemen's Association.
The BLM estimates it will spend in 2005 more than half of its budget housing an estimated 24,000 wild horses, about $20.1 million. Roughly 8,400 of the horses must be sold under the new law.
The BLM for the past six years has asked Congress for additional money to pay for the rising costs in gathering, adopting and housing 'excess' wild horses.
The BLM estimates 37,000 wild horses roam 10 Western states, about half of them on Nevada public lands. The Nevada Cattlemen's Association estimates at least 25,000 wild horses live on the range, far too many, it contends, eating precious forage. [Editor's note: Wild horses and burros are a tiny minority to the millions of cattle that share this land; studies have shown damage to these public lands have been caused by cattle, not horses.]
The BLM is looking to reduce horse and burros to 28,000 in all 10 states by 2007, program manager Jeff Rawson said.
The Humane Society of the United States, the Las Vegas-based National Wild Horse Association and other groups are petitioning Congress to pass legislation by Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., that would repeal the law.
Thursday, February 03, 2005
HR 503 Referred to Committee on Energy and Commerce for Further Deliberation
"The Horse Slaughter Prevention Act has been reintroduced to Congress as bill H.R. 503. Congressman John Sweeney of New York is the lead sponsor of H.R. 503 and introduced the bill on Feb. 1 as 'A bill to amend the Horse Protection Act to prohibit the shipping, transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing, or donation of horses and other equines to be slaughtered for human consumption, and for other purposes.
Sweeney remarked, 'A new year brings new opportunities. I am confident we will build on the tremendous support we had last year and finally end the brutal and despicable practice of slaughtering horses for human consumption.'
Co-sponsors of H.R. 503 are Congressmen John Spratt of South Carolina; Ed Whitfield of Kentucky; Sherrod Brown of Ohio; Eliot Engel of New York; Mary Bono, Christopher Cox, Elton Gallegly, Lois Capps, and Anna Eshoo of California; Michael Ferguson and Frank Pallone of New Jersey; Gene Green of Texas; Debi Towns of Wisconsin; James Moran of Virginia; and Christopher Shays of Connecticut.
The bill has been referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce for further deliberation."
Send Your Message Now Regarding HR 503
Send your message now urging passage of the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act... via the Doris Day Animal League.
It's best to send a letter, fax or make a phone call, but if you can't do those, at least use the automated form letter in the previous paragraph to send an email.
Click here for more information on your legislators.
MORE ON NEW BILL, HR 503, TO PROTECT AMERICA'S HORSES...
Purpose: "To amend the Horse Protection Act to prohibit the shipping, transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing, selling, or donation of horses and other equines to be slaughtered for human consumption, and for other purposes."
The bill already has 15 cosponsors and was introduced by Rep. John Sweeney of NY.
Read the text of the legislation. ed. note: at the time of posting, the text was not yet available, but should be in the coming days.
ACTION TO TAKE: CALL OR WRITE YOUR REPRESENTATIVE AND ASK THEM TO COSPONSOR THE BILL.
Wednesday, February 02, 2005
BLM offers burro adoption program...
Desert Dispatch - Barstow,CA,USA
"...the Bureau of Land Management will offer wild horses and burros to qualified... animal and should have some experience training or raising a horse or burro...
...'Mustangs are very intelligent and renowned for their strength, speed, and endurance,' said BLM wrangler Dan Anderson. 'The horses make excellent riding stock, and properly trained some adopted Mustangs have become national champions in dressage, snaffle bit competitions, trail, endurance, and jumping...'"
Broader Horse Protection Legislation Reintroduced...
American Horse Defense Fund: Hope for American Horses
U.S. Newswire (press release) - Washington,DC,USA...
WASHINGTON, Feb. 2 /U.S. Newswire/ -- "The brutal and needless slaughter of America's faithful and noble horses and ponies may soon finally be a shameless thing of the past due to today's reintroduction into the U.S. House of [Representatives] a redrafted version of the former the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act. The American Horse Defense Fund (AHDF), the nation's leading horse protection, education and advocacy nonprofit, applauds the bill's lead sponsor, Representative John Sweeney (R-N.Y.). This bill had 228 cosponsors in the previous Congress but wasn't voted on.
This new version, H.R. 503 amends the Horse Protection Act and will prevent American horses from being slaughtered for human consumption within the US and outside of the US. In 2004, three foreign-owned U.S. horse slaughterhouses in Texas and Illinois slaughtered over 65,000 horses, another 20-25,000 were sent to slaughter in Canada and Japan. After the horses are slaughtered and processed, the meat is shipped to France, Belgium, other European countries and Japan, where horsemeat is considered a healthy delicacy. 'The Europeans don't seem aware that horses in the US are dosed with all kinds of medicines, preparations and wormers all their lives-those containers are all marked 'not for use in animals intended for human consumption'', said AHDF president, Trina Bellak, Esq. Horsemeat is not healthy.
...'This inhumane and disgusting practice, which only serves to promote animal cruelty, needs to be brought to an end,' said Sweeney. 'Support for this legislation is stronger than ever, and I look forward to the day when the American horse no longer ends up on a dinner plate overseas.'
...More information about the bill can be found at http://www.AHDF.org."
40,000 Horses Stolen Every Year Feared Sold for Meat...
Horse owners desperately search for their beloved stolen animals...The Leaf-Chronicle
"...'You could see where they were forced over the fence. People are in the business of stealing horses.'
A study done in the 1990s by Stolen Horses International reported more than 40,000 horses go missing each year.
'That's an alarming number of horses,' said Debi Metcalfe, director of a Web site based out of North Carolina that keeps track of lost and stolen horses. "People think that because a horse is so big they can't be stolen, but it happens all the time....'
What worries Jordan and other horse owners is that someone can steal a horse, fabricate paperwork and sell the horse at an auction, which can then be sold to a slaughter house for about 20 cents a pound. Although the use of horses for food is illegal in the United States, the meat is sold overseas to Europe and Japan for consumption and is considered a delicacy..."
On the Record with Rep. Rahall...
(thanks to Society of Animal Protection Legislation for the link)
Rep. Rahall makes good points. Why has slaughter been a sudden hurried option when viable, humane alternatives exist? Rahall was prompted to introduce the bill thanks to PUBLIC OUTCRY.
LET YOUR LEGISLATORS HEAR FROM YOU TODAY. Ask them to co-sponsore HR 297. Please also let the Committee on Resources know you want them to co-sponsor the legislation!
Click HERE to get all the information you need (even a letter you can customize!).
..."They were the heart of one of the most famous enterprises of our old wild west. They cost up to five times as much as an average cowpony because they were the best in the west — tough, sure-footed and fast, able to outrun any horse chasing them. Have you had the good fortune of seeing one of America's increasingly rare wild mustangs or burros?
If not, you most likely never will, because President Bush just pulled the trigger on them. In the future, the main places they will appear is in Japan, Belgium, France and Italy, on dinner plates..."
Habitat for Horses Offer Bracelets Opposing Slaughter...
|Support the Close of Slaughter Houses
Habitat for Horses and Lone Star Equine Rescue are working together towards ending horse slaughter. We've designed an anti-horse slaughter bracelet to be worn until all equine slaughter houses are closed.
The bracelets are inscribed with the words "Until they are safe." Original artwork of a horse rescued from one of the three remaining operating slaughter houses appears on each bracelet along with information of a perfect and healthy US horse that has been slaughtered.
The bracelets are $10 plus shipping. Click on the picture to find out how to order yours. All proceeds go to support the closing of horse slaughter facilities.
Tuesday, February 01, 2005
Will Burns Listen to An Alternative?
"...The bill to restore the ban on the commercial sale and slaughter of wild horses, H.R. 297, is now in the House Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over wild horse policy on federal lands.
The bill must move through that committee, then to a vote on the House floor.
Advocates hope to get Burns, the Montana senator, to sponsor the bill in the Senate.
'He has said in the past that all he was doing was trying to motivate the BLM to move horses out of sanctuaries,' Sussman said. 'We think we have a solution to that'...”
News, Letters to Editor Demonstrate Passion Over Horses' Fate...
Kansas City Star (subscription) - Kansas City,MO,USA
"... We never sent an old horse to the killers. ... And she went not to slaughter but to an abler horseman who reckoned he could manage her..."
"... Nevada Department of Agriculture officials who conducted the recent roundup say the agency has never sold a wild horse for slaughter..."
... for the horses is paid by people who sponsor a particular horse and pay ... money to rescue and support Thoroughbred racehorses who are being sent to slaughter. ...