SALT LAKE CITY — The Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board will meet March 27-28 in Salt Lake City “to discuss the pressing challenge of wild horse and burro management on public lands and the impacts a growing overpopulation is having on the environment,” the BLM announced.
The meeting will be live-streamed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Time on Tuesday and 8 a.m. to noon Mountain Time on Wednesday at http://www.blm.gov/live.
According to the most recent population estimates compiled as of March 1, 2017, there are about 73,000 wild horses and burros in 10 Western states —a record number since the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act was passed — and almost three times the number the habitat can sustainably support in conjunction with other land uses, the BLM stated.
“Healthy wild horses and burros are an important part of our public lands, but without effective management, overpopulation threatens the health of the animals and their habitat,” said Brian Steed, BLM Deputy Director for Programs and Policy. “We look forward to working with the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board to find effective solutions that will help us reach our goal of maintaining healthy wild horses and burros on thriving public rangelands.”
Because wild horses and burros have virtually no natural predators on public rangelands, herds grow at an astonishing rate — doubling in size in just four or five years if not properly managed, the BLM stated.
The meeting will be held at the Radisson Hotel Salt Lake Downtown. The public may address the Advisory Board on Tuesday from 3 to 5 p.m. Mountain Time. Individuals who want to make a statement should register in person with the BLM prior to 2:30 p.m. local time, on that same day at the meeting site.