The BLM is offering a $1,000 incentive for people to adopt wild horses.
Qualified adopters are eligible to receive $500 within 60 days of the adoption date and an additional $500 within 60 days of titling for each animal, which normally occurs one year from the adoption date. Adopters pay a minimum $25 adoption fee per animal.
“We understand that adopting a wild horse or burro represents a commitment. The incentive is designed to help with the adopter’s initial training and humane care,” said BLM Deputy Director of Programs and Policy Brian Steed.
According to a press release from the BLM, the program is part of the agency’s efforts to confront a growing overpopulation of wild horses and burros on fragile rangelands and in off-range holding facilities, which cost taxpayers nearly $50 million every year to maintain.
As of March 1, 2018, the wild horse and burro population on public lands was estimated at about 81,950 animals, which is now more than triple the size the land can support along with other legally mandated uses, the agency stated. It said that chronic overpopulation increases the risk of damage to rangeland resources through overgrazing and raises the chance of starvation and thirst for animals in overpopulated herds.
Potential adopters should visit the BLM website or call 866-468-7826 to learn about the requirements for adopting a wild horse or burro.
The Challis Herd Management Area, one of six such areas in Idaho, covers about 264 square miles east of Clayton. According to the Challis Field Office website, it contains about 200 wild horses.