Letter to the Secretary of Interior, Sally Jewell on Flag Day
June 14th, 2013
Dear Secretary Jewell,
First of all we would like to congratulate you on your new position as Secretary of Interior.
The National Academy of Sciences published a report last week. According to a press release from NAS released Wednesday, “The U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) current practice of removing free-ranging horses from public lands promotes a high population growth rate, and maintaining them in long-term holding facilities is both economically unsustainable and incongruent with public expectations, says a new report by the National Research Council.”
Despite the fact that there is no evidence of overpopulation, The NAS is suggesting a broad use of fertility control–sterilization and risky birth control approved by the EPA as a “restricted use pesticide”.
You can read about the issue in the Washington Post here as it went viral around the world: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-06-05/national/39747528_1_roundups-fertility-population-growth
The FDA would not approve this fertility control drug for equines. If the drugs/pesticides/birth control are not dangerous, then why haven’t they been approved for domestic horses?
Science has proven wild horses are returned-natives. Any designation of them as “pests” surely will be challenged in the courts in the near future.
We are requesting a moratorium on roundups and a scientific study to determine the actual population as well as birthrate–without the herds feeling an urgent need to reproduce because of excessive roundups since 2009. We kindly request this occur before any action to sterilize or give birth control labelled a “restricted use pesticide” to America’s wild horses and burros.
There are several health risks involved with giving free-roaming mares PZP, GonaCon® and other immunocontraceptives as well as sterilizing them or the stallions. I will provide more information in another letter.
We also request you consider the fact that managing wild horses and burros with fertility control would domesticate them because man would be choosing who breeds when, for more than a million years, Equus caballus has evolved through the survival of the fittest model.
The environment is changing and with it wildlife must evolve to survive. We are deeply concerned that using fertility control would manage them to extinction due to human interference with natural selection.
We don’t have any conflicts of interests as we are not funded by organizations and or companies connected to fertility control products and services. We are asking you for your help during this crisis because we represent many Americans who care about wild horses and burros.
Advocates estimate there are only 18,000 wild horses left in the wild. The BLM has been claiming their numbers are in the high 30,000 to justify large-scale, costly roundups and removals since 2009. The BLM has a huge budget for the program and no scientific proof of population–no headcount. Their overpopulation claim lacks scientific evidence as we claimed and was determined by the National Academy of Sciences
It’s time for wild horses and burros to be managed using real science not junk science. We encourage you to put a moratorium on roundups and complete a comprehensive scientific population study before you agree to using any fertility controls on our wild herds.
Thank you for helping save America’s wild horses and burros from being managed to extinction.
San Francisco Bay Area
As seen in the Washington Post
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Protect Mustangs is devoted to protecting native wild horses. Our mission is to educate the public about the indigenous wild horse, protect and research American wild horses on the range and help those who have lost their freedom.
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