The federal Bureau of Land Management announced Wednesday it will use fertility treatment on some 900 wild horses that it hopes to round up in western states during the current fiscal year.
The "catch, treat and release" approach comes amidst ongoing controversy over the roundups, which are designed to control the population of horses on federal rangelands.
The BLM argues that reducing herd sizes are necessary to protect the range and to keep the horse populations healthy into the future. Animal welfare groups say the roundups are illegal because the government has failed to prove that wild horses and burros are overpopulated or harm the environment. They also believe that the roundups or "gathers," in which the BLM chases the animals with helicopters and ships them to holding facilities in the Midwest, are cruel.
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