Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Letter from Senator Barbara Box RE: Wild Horses

Dear Ms. Lawrence:
Thank you for writing to me regarding the management of the wild horse population on our public lands. I appreciate hearing from you and share your concerns.
As a long-time supporter of wildlife conservation, I am strongly opposed to any proposals that would destroy or harm our wild horses and burros.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has considered various controversial options in its effort to control the increasing numbers of wild horses and burros. Among these options are the use of euthanasia on healthy animals and the unconditional sale of older horses that have been unsuccessfully offered for adoption. Destroying these magnificent animals is never a viable management option, and the sale of horses without limitations could lead to horse slaughter, which is also unacceptable.
The BLM should more seriously consider more humane solutions such as improving the adoption program, exploring the use of contraceptives or sterilization to reduce herd sizes, or securing additional funds for an appropriate management program that would ensure proper care for these animals.
I also support legislation to expand the range where wild horses could roam freely, enhance the adoption program, encourage the use of non-lethal methods to reduce herd size, reduce the time a horse spends in a holding pen, and prohibit the euthanization or sale for slaughter of wild horses. On July 17, 2009, the House passed the Restore Our Wild Mustangs (ROAM) Act (H.R.1018), which seeks to accomplish all of these objectives. This bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

In addition, I believe strongly in a permanent ban on horse slaughter. That is why I am proud to be an original co-sponsor of the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act (S.727) to prohibit the transport, export, or sale of any horse to be slaughtered for human consumption. I look forward to working with my colleagues to enact the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act.
Thank you again for contacting me about this important issue. Rest assured that I will continue to support efforts to maintain the integrity of wild horse and burro populations on our public lands.

Barbara Boxer
United States Senator

Please do not respond to this message. If you would like to comment on legislation, please visit my website and use the correspondence form

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