On July 31st, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced its intent to acquire more short-term holding facilities for the Wild Horse and Burro (WHB) Program. The BLM aims to have facilities in the 30 states that are east of the Mississippi River. Currently, the WHB Program manages 26.9 million acres of public lands across Western States. The acquisition of more facilities across the eastern states would help address the shortage of corral sites that the program currently has.
The Wild Horse and Burro Program began in 1971 as a way for BLM to implement P.L. 92-125, the Wild-Free Roaming Horses Act. This Act was passed to protect the wild horse and burro populations while sustaining the nation’s public lands. To achieve this goal, the BLM must manage the wild horse and burro population which requires controlling the density of these populations in certain areas. The program currently has 177 herd management areas on which BLM conducts regular Gathers and Removals of wild horses and burros. These activities are one of the major contributors to the need for additional holding facilities. Humane transportation is essential to the vitality of wild horse and burro populations, which limits the hours that the animals may spend in transit. These additional holding facilities will help broaden the WHB adoption and sales program by providing greater regional shipping and receiving locations.
For those interested in learning more about how to provide an Off-Range Corral Site, please visit the BLM’s Request for Information Site. Interested parties must complete and submit a questionnaire to the BLM no later than August 30, 2020.