Investigate Las Vegas Horse Massacre

Targets: BLM Director Neil Kornze and Deputy Inspector General Mary Kendall

Goal: Stop the unnecessary suffering and death of America’s wild horses.

A group of over 200 wild horses west of Las Vegas were found to be enduring starvation conditions on and around federal land, and 28 have since died at human hands. When the BLM found the emaciated mustangs, who were in their charge, they opted to kill a score of the exhausted and hungry creatures. We need to pool our voices in demanding a federal investigation regarding the decision-making process responsible for the death of these majestic animals and the conditions under which they came to be starving in the first place.

The herd was found some 30 miles west of Las Vegas near the BLM-administered Red Rock Canyon National Park. The federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is responsible for administering the land as well as “protect[ing] and manag[ing] wild horses and burros,” according to the BLM’s own website. The New York Times reported that the BLM justified their decision on the grounds that the horses had apparently been reduced to eating “desert shrubs” with “little or no nutritional value” after being forced to travel “10 or more miles” to find any sustenance because of “extreme drought and lack of forage.” As a result, 28 of the equestrian climate refugees were so close to starvation by the time the BLM happened upon them that BLM officials saw fit to “euthanize” them.

When the BLM’s response to starving horses is lethal, there is cause for rigorous investigation and firm reaction. We are observing a gross mismanagement of one of our most treasured domestic wildlife populations either 1) directly through BLM neglect and misconduct, or 2) through allowing climate change to proceed in such an unfettered fashion that ending dozens of innocent lives was in fact the least of all evils. It is imperative that the Department of the Interior, the BLM’s parent agency, conduct a thorough investigation into the matter and make swift, sweeping changes to BLM practices in order to protect and manage wild horses and their habitats.


Dear Director Kornze and Deputy Inspector General Kendall,

This September, over 200 wild horses on and around federal lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management were found to be starving to death, due to drought and depletion of foraging stocks.  Agents of the Bureau of Land Management went on to kill 28 of these wild horses that the Bureau has a duty to protect and manage.

In light of this recent, unnecessary loss of American national treasures at the hands of Bureau of Labor Management agents, it is undeniably your duty to promptly pursue a thorough investigation into the cause of this tragedy so that similar events can be prevented in the future. I urge you to carry out that duty.

Further, if the investigation concludes that Bureau of Land Management officials had the means to prevent the conditions that led to the killings, or that the horses could have been saved by any reasonable means despite the condition they were found in, I demand swift recourse for responsible officials and the implementation of prevention strategies.

Sincerely, [Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Cat Kindsfather

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  1. Why do public officials seemingly always escape prosecution and other consequences for their illegal acts?
    Clearly any common citizen who allowed the exact same thing to occur would be prosecuted.
    Why should public employees be able to dodge the bullet and go scott free? That is just WRONG!!!!!

    • Bob,a couple of years ago here in Utah, that is exactly what happened. Someone turned in a lady for not being able to take care of her (25-75) horses. It was during the winter and she couldn’t afford hay for all of them. They were starving and dying. The local sheriffs office & BLM came in asked for donations to feed the horses and take in some and then hauled the lady and her 22 year old son to jail. It is very disgusting how the government take care of our wild horses.

  2. This is NOT ACCEPTABLE!!! You can’t tell me there are protection laws for a little frog but, still nothing is in place for the wild American horse!!! I personally feel like the Government doesn’t want to do anything to help them, they must be benefiting from this.

  3. Margaret, Johannesburg south Africa says:

    Hope the people concerned rot in hell ten times over, they should be strung up to dry!!! Also that no one comes to their assistance. Bless the souls of those majestic beautiful creatures that would never harm a human. May they forever live in anguish and strife!!!!

  4. This is outrageous. Our wild horses and burros deserve way better than this. It’s time to teach some of these ranchers in the West that they cannot continue to steal the grazing exclusively for their cattle and sheep. They need to start feeding on their own land like they do in the Midwest. It’s just plain suspicious when the BLM can do things like declaring parts of wild horse country unable to sustain any herds because of lack of adequate forage and water and 10 minutes later allow some rancher to put his cattle out there. Add to this the threat of climate change and our wild horses and burros get the short end of the stick every time. This has to stop.


    The BLM needs an overhaul. Corruption is rampant. Taxpayers demand answers now!!

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