Comments About Wild Horse Fertility Control

/ Neda’s Blog
wild horses at Return to Freedom Photo: Aurora

Wild horses at Return to Freedom. Photo: Aurora

About fertility control:
Unfortunately, decades of propaganda have scapegoated our wild horses and burros as the “biggest concern” on the range by livestock ranchers even while the ranges are ravaged by mining, fracking and drought, livestock ranchers continue to point the finger at the wild horse who is outnumbered by millions of privately owned livestock. While our wild horses fight to survive – the American tax payer is paying the price – special interests profit from livestock, and the sale of our minerals and natural resources on our federal land; Americans pay over $132 million a year in direct costs alone to support livestock grazing on our public lands — yet less than 3% of America’s beef supply is from cattle grazing on public lands.

Return to Freedom advocates for wild horses to live in their naturally selected family and social bands on their rightful ranges. Although it certainly is not wild horses and burros that are overpopulating our public lands, if population management will minimize or eliminate capture and removal, RTF advocates for using the most minimally intrusive, humane tools available as an alternative to the costly and traumatic roundups and warehousing of fractured wild horse herds. Currently, the only tool available which has decades of data supporting humane, safe and proven results is the Native PZP fertility control vaccine. RTF has used Native PZP since 2000 to slow down reproduction. Mares at RTF’s American Wild Horse Sanctuary are living into their 30’s and show no signs of illness, laminitis or other claims of disease or negative behavior. The biology of the mare is to birth almost every year and the herd certainly is invigorated by the raising of the foals- but if the result is more roundups, population management is a more humane alternative. Native PZP is non-hormonal and does not affect the food chain, so it will not poison other animals. The BLM has been moving rapidly towards all methods of permanent sterilization- many which run a high risk of causing infection and death and ALL of which permanently alter natural behavior, and destroy genetic diversity.

Here is a document I worked on with Dr. Pat Fazio with input from the late Dr. Jay Kirkpatrick (Director, Science and Conservation Center)

Myths and Facts – Native PZP (First Edition 02-28-2015; updated 05-08-15x)FINAL

Neda DeMayo
President, Return to Freedom