Titus blasts Trump administration for “total failure” on wild horse management

horsies
Wild horses at the Nevada National Security Site, via Wikimedia Commons.
horsies
Wild horses at the Nevada National Security Site, via Wikimedia Commons.

In a letter to the House Natural Resource Committee Chairman Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Nevada Rep. Dina Titus called for an increase in the protection of wild horses, and blasted the Trump Administration for weakening conservation efforts.

“(U)nder the Trump Administration, federal land managers, in particular the Bureau of Land Management, have taken significant steps to remove protections for these animals, shifting resources away from scientifically-sound birth control programs and wasting limited resources on costly and dangerous roundups and holdings which only exacerbate population growth,” wrote Titus in the letter.

Nevada has the largest concentration of wild horses and burros in the nation, which Titus said “are a source of pride for our residents, visitors, and tribal communities” in the state.

Titus did not hold back on admonishing the Trump Administration for what she sees as a “total failure in leadership” on the federal management of wild horse and burro populations asserting that “the numerous scandals and failures of the Trump Administration” has lead to serious and significant issues in policy and a lack of transparency and accountability within the Department of Interior and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

New policy submitted by BLM in July has created loopholes for the sale of wild horses and burros to kill-buyers and the sale and transportation of wild horses and burros across state borders for human consumption, said Titus in the letter.

Titus wrote to former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke in September asking for specifics on the policy changes and proposed wild horse roundups in Nevada and has yet to receive a reply. Zinke resigned in December amid an onslaught of ethics charges and Interior is currently being led by Deputy Secretary David Bernhardt.  

“(N)o one from the Department of Interior or the BLM responded to my letters,” wrote Titus. “I am deeply troubled by this Administration’s changes in policies, questionable budgetary decisions, and failure to respond to the inquiries of Members of Congress. I am hopeful the House Natural Resources Committee, under (Grijalva’s) direction, can shine a light on this total failure of leadership.”

Jeniffer Solis
Reporter | Jeniffer was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada where she attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas before graduating in 2017 with a B.A in Journalism and Media Studies. While at UNLV she was a senior staff writer for the student newspaper, the UNLV Scarlet and Gray Free Press, and a news reporter for KUNV 91.5 FM, covering everything from the Route 91 shooting to UNLV housing. She has also contributed to the UNLV News Center and worked as a production engineer for several KUNV broadcasts before joining the Nevada Current. She’s an Aries.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Things have gotten worse for the Wild Horses and Burros under the Trump administration. However, previous administration have also been neglegent in their handling of the herd sizes. The BLM’s main “management” technique has been for years to round them up, usually via helicopters after running them for many miles with no regard for the ability of the foals to keep up, then pen them up and feed them for the rest of their lives. I agree that the Department of the Interior owes the American people answers to the use of fertility control (PZP) versus round-ups, bait/gather/treat with PZP then release rather than heli use, unlimited sales, etc…and
    better ones than the examples shown by many administrations.

  2. As a Palomino Valley, NV resident, I can attest to the community sadness at the loss of our feral horses to an illegal round up by the Paiute Tribe. Nevada has suffered a great loss with the mismanagement of our wild horses, including the loss of our beloved horses in our valley.

    • @ Stacie Clark~ Many are heartsick about the roundup you speak of. I am an advocate for America’s wild horse and burro populations, and keeping our open public lands available for their free roaming. The Paiute tribe should be ashamed and repentive for this huge loss of wild life. Why? Greed? Anyway, I offer my sympathy and assure you, I and many are grieving with you all in Palomino Valley. This is all our loss. Sincerely Patti L. WA State.

  3. Actually, AWHC and RTF Wild Horse Protection Groups have actually stated that the “Trump Administration has Doubled Down on Our Wild Horses by REMOVING them at a ‘Record Pace’ – Trump must be Stopped — NOW, Before it’s too late to save them. It’s that simple.

  4. A truly special resource is being destroyed by our own government. Rather ironic that a beautiful mustang, adopted at age 6, was just named Horse of the Year!
    These animals are the best of the best through natural selection. Anyone who watched PBS’s Nature “Equus: Story of the Horse” would agree.

  5. We are facing the same issues here in Australia . Culls, helicopters being used to shoot horses from leaving them suffering for days until they die , pregnant mares shot – it’s endless aggravated cruelty. There’s no discussion with stakeholders that care , a blunt refusal to acknowledge any heritage significance and community sentiments. Have a look on Facebook at Barmah Brumby Preservation Group. It’s a story only nightmares are made of.

  6. The lack of protection and/or interest by the Government of the wild horses in Nevada, California and everywhere else they can legally roam, is abominable !!
    They are being rounded up off of public lands, herded cruelly by helicopters, run for miles at top speed, penned indefinitely while awaiting their fate.
    Many mares are separated from their foals, some foals cannot keep up, many injuries !!!! All of this because ranchers want to illegally graze their cattle on public lands. Apparently the BML turns a deaf ear and a blind eye and ignores the fact that the wild horses and burros are PROTECTED BY LAW!!!

  7. Worse these greedy manipulative politically connected rich whit ranchers WELFARE GRAZING on PUBLIC LAND THAT BELONGS TO WILDLIFE & allegedly “protected” wild horses routinely lie about herd #’s when its cattle & use public land as COLLATERAL FOR BANK LOANS! It’s NOT THEIR FUCKING LAND but like the lowlife Bundys who owe MILLIONS in unpaid fees RepubliCON assholes like Stewart in Utah help them kill horses to get even RICHER. Sue the banks, kick cattle OFF PUBLIC LANDS, FREE THE HORSES, charge criminal BLM & FORCE RANCHERS TO PAY FULL MARKET VALUE for any lands they graze on that’s not theirs!

  8. Even though horses, including modern horses are a native species, they were specifically listed as a non-indigenous species to the US by IUCN, IUCS, TNC in the 1993 Harmful Non-Indigenous Species in the United States. OTA-F-565, NTIS order #PB107679, GPO stock #O52-003-01347-9-. This report has been rewritten and republished but the info is still false. have a copy of digital report. Despite hundred and hundreds of horse fossils found all over US from FL to Yukon are in Alaska, lot of fraud at implemented in the 1992 UN Convention of Biological Diversity, but even though US was largely behind this treaty, President Bush (41) decided not to sign it. He did, however, sign UN Agenda 21 as well as the Framework Convention for Climate Change. The OTA Report was an explanation for Article 8(h) The Alien/ Invasive Species Law that directs parties to the convention to prevent, control, and eradicate alien, invasive species where found to the extent possible where found outside their original range. See EO 13112, The Alien/Invasive Species Act in effect 2001.

  9. Finn the Wild Horses out West were and are supposed to be protected under the Nixon law. The Safe Act needs to be passed to protect these horses from being shipped to slaughter. Wild Horses served in wars and should be protected. They are an American icon that needs to be saved

  10. Although I voted for Trump i am extremely upset about his treatment of our various wildlife groups. Chief among them are the fates of wild horses and burros whom I have tried to help via groups such as Save Them All. I am not sure I can vote for him again

    • I’ve often said, that though I am fiscal conservative, I can never vote Republican because we Are destroying the planet (and any inhabitants that hinder “growth) and Republicans are in deep deep denial.

  11. Thank you to both Representative Titus for speaking out against the atrocities and mismanagement that have happened over the last two years of these national treasures and Jennifer Solis for writing this article. I truly believe that if the nation was more aware of this issue there would be a public outcry against what is currently going on. Miss Solis I urge you to keep shining a light on this issue- Great article. Best regards, Dr Ryan

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