BLM Nevada boss wants 4,000 mustangs rounded up

Posted at 11:08 AM, May 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-02 13:08:41-04

RENO, Nev. (AP) -- The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's Nevada director wants to free up more federal rangeland for livestock grazing this summer -- by rounding up 4,000 wild horses in Elko County.

That's more mustangs than were gathered across ten Western states combined last year.

BLM Nevada Director John Ruhs, Governor Brian Sandoval and state wildlife officials say removing the horses from four herd management areas in Elko County -- near the Utah line -- would also benefit the greater sage grouse.

Conservationists say the call for more roundups is a misguided attempt to placate ranchers at the expense of horses and grouse.

They say cattle do far more damage than mustangs to the drought-stricken range and the imperiled bird.