BLM Proposal For Multi-Year Horse Gather In Public Comment Period

Dec 11, 2019

Wild horses have no natural predators, so they reproduce quickly.
Credit BLM

The Wyoming Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is proposing a multi-year wild horse gather in Southwest Wyoming. The herds in these areas have exceeded their appropriate management levels (AML), which could be detrimental to the health of the rangeland they live on, according to the BLM. 

AMLs are determined by multiple aspects.

"We're looking at several different things. So, we're looking at rangelands, we're looking at the health of the range lands, we're looking at how much precipitation that area gets," Brad Purdy, BLM Public Affairs Specialist, said. "There's several factors that go into how we set those appropriate management levels."

Gathers allow the BLM to apply birth control measures in the herd and remove some horses completely for adoption. The multi-year roundup plan is in its first round of public comment.

"It's very important that we get that public input right now. We need to have that public input. It helps us guide alternative development, it helps us identify environmental issues that are out there, and it helps us determine the depth of the analysis," Purdy said.

The first round of public comments will close on December 20. Then the BLM will draft an environmental analysis utilizing the comments. The draft will then go into a second public comment period before being finalized.

The BLM hopes to begin gathers in summer or fall of 2020.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Ivy Engel, at iengel@uwyo.edu.