The wild horse round-up has been an ongoing controversy and now the Bureau of Land Management has pushed back their round up date from August 20th to September 1st. Governor Mead has reminded the BLM that under the Wild Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act the federal government must remove wild horses that are overpopulating the land. But some horse groups still want to fight the issue
“They're a native species, they're fascinating to watch and they live in their family units. When they're rounded up, that's all taken away from them,” says Ginger Kathrens, The Cloud Foundation.
This is what the memberships of many groups believe.
At the Bureau of Land Management National Advisory Board meeting Monday, these groups held a rally in support of keeping the horses on their land.
“If we were to lose all those horses I think we would lose a part of our history here in Wyoming. I think they are very important to the history of the state of Wyoming,” says Kathrens.
Here at the meeting as each member of the public who wanted to speak was given two minutes to comment about their beliefs; there was an overwhelming support for the horses.
One citizen worries about the wild horses on her private property and said one stallion attacked her daughter. When she called the BLM, they told her they didn't have the money to remove the horse and told her to shoot it.
“We feel like, you know, we have to commit a federal crime in order to keep our family safe, or not use our private property,” says Meghan O’Toolelally, Savery land owner.
Many of the citizens speaking said there are far more cattle and sheep than wild horses and because of this, the horses are not the ones causing the land degradation. But a BLM representative says science provides the guidance .
“That science has determined the amount of horses that an area can sustain within multiple use area,” says Kristen Lenhardt, BLM.
Lenhardt says BLM employees do care about the horses' health.
“We do a lot of monitoring efforts and really try to manage the range for long-term health because the health of the horses is very important and something we work towards as the Bureau,” says Lenhardt.
If the BLM removes the horses from the land, members of the horse rights group say they will be put in corrals... Which they say is inhumane.