BLM to conduct a “virtual” tour of a wild horse off-range pasture September 21
GRAND JUNCTION – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will conduct a virtual tour of a wild horse off-range pasture via Facebook Live on Sept. 21, 2020 starting at 9 a.m. Mountain Time. The purpose of the tour is to allow the public to see and learn more about BLM’s wild horse and burro management mission, including the agency’s responsibility for providing humane care for thousands of animals held in off-range facilities.
The BLM currently cares for approximately 35,000 wild horses on 35 off-range pastures throughout the Central Plains and parts of the West. These are animals that were removed from Western public rangelands as part of BLM’s mission to protect and preserve America’s wild horse and burro herds. The off-range pasture to be featured during this virtual tour – known as the Jameson Ranch near Davis, Oklahoma – is a private ranch under contract with the government to feed and care for up to 200 federally protected wild horses in a natural free-roaming environment.
To join the tour, simply visit the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/BLMWildHorseandBurro/.
BLM staff specialists along with the ranch owner will virtually walk the public through the pasture to see the horses and discuss details about how and why the agency manages these American icons. Virtual attendees may ask questions via the live chat. Staff specialist will answer as many as possible, time permitting. The live broadcast is expected to last approximately one hour. In the event of inclement weather, the tour will be rescheduled for a later date.
The BLM manages wild horses and burros on 177 herd management areas covering 26.9 million acres of public land in 10 Western states. The objective is to ensure healthy herds thrive on healthy rangelands. With no natural predators to keep horse and burro populations in check, herd sizes can grow rapidly, potentially doubling every four to five years.
As of March 2020, the on-range population of wild horses and burros was estimated at 95,000, which far exceeds the appropriate management level of 26,770 that would be consistent with balanced, sustainable use of the land. The BLM seeks to achieve appropriate management level through various means, primarily by gathering and removing excess animals from the range. Many of these animals are placed into private care either through adoption or sale. Those animals for which no private demand exists are held in a network of BLM off-range corrals and pastures around the country.
For more information, please contact the Wild Horse and Burro Program National Information Center at 866-468-7826 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. Diverse activities authorized on these lands generated $111 billion in economic output across the country in fiscal year 2019—more than any other agency in the Department of the Interior. These activities supported more than 498,000 jobs.