The High Cost of Cheap Grazing on Public Land

Straight from the Horse's Heart

By Andy Kerr as published on his Public Lands Blog

“Bovine bulldozers have caused more harm to the public lands than mining or logging…”

Private “Welfare Cattle” being herded onto BLM Antelope Complex in Nevada, while Wild Horse roundup was being conducted ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

It costs more to feed a domestic house cat than to graze domestic livestock on federal public lands.

This has generally been the case since the early 1900s, when the federal government first required ranchers to pay a fee for grazing their livestock on millions of acres of federal land, primarily in western states.

Each January the USDA Forest Service and the USDI Bureau of Land Management calculate what the federal grazing fee will be for that year. For 2017, it’s $1.87/animal unit month (AUM), down from $2.11/AUM in 2016. An AUM is the amount of forage…

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