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Forest Service Banned From Selling Wild Horses For Slaughter

Kyle Hendrix/Bureau of Land Management

Congress yesterday passed the fiscal year 2020 "minibus" spending bill prohibiting the U.S. Forest Service from euthanizing healthy wild horses and burros and selling them for slaughter. 

Congress had previously prohibited the Bureau of Land Management from lethal control of the animals, but the ban did not extend to the Forest Service until now. The agency manages a much smaller but still significant population of federally protected wild horses and burros in the West. The expanded prohibition is a direct response to the Forest Service's plan, unveiled in 2018, to sell California wild horses captured in the Modoc National Forest without limitation on slaughter. The plan drew sharp opposition from the public and political leaders.