You’ve heard of adopting a pet, like a cat or dog, but tomorrow in Decorah about 40 wild horses are up for adoption.
“Each animal has their own personality. They have their own character,” says Martha Malik of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.
The bureau is trying to thin the wild horse population that roams on public land in the western U.S. — so these are wild horses.
“The most important thing about gentling an animal is having the time to do it and making the time to do it because all they want is tender loving care,” Malik says.
You can adopt a wild horse for $125. If you adopt a second horse that’s at least three years old, the additional fee is $25. Interested buyers can look the horses over from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. today.
“That gives you the opportunity to take a look at the animals, the look at the different sizes, colors, their personality traits,” Malik says.
The sale will start at 8 a.m. tomorrow at American Ag Sales and Supply in Decorah. Federal officials say in the past year there’s been an 18 percent increase in the number of wild horses and burros in the western U.S. As of last month, the Bureau of Land Management had more than 47,000 wild horses and burros in holding facilities. The state of Nevada has more than 30,000 wild horses and burros roaming on public lands, the most of any state.
(Reporting by Sarah Boden of Iowa Public Radio; additional reporting by Radio Iowa’s O. Kay Henderson/photo courtesy of Bureau of Land Management)