If you’re a reasonable person this news story is going to piss you off.
How much money should the government spend studying birth control for horses and mules?
$100? $1,000? $10,000? Think higher.
This week’s Golden Horseshoe is awarded to the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for $11 million in anticipated research grants to study birth control methods for wild horses and burros (WHB), including possibilities such as tubal ligation, sterilization and IUD devices.
The Biden administration’s FY 2022 budget request would increase the BLM’s funding by $311.9 million over the enacted FY 2021 budget, bringing it to $1.6 billion, and allowing it to fund research such as the WHB fertility control project listed on Grants.gov.
The government is currently operating under a stopgap spending bill which funds the government until Feb. 18.
The BLM is seeking researchers, according to the project’s grant notice, to “develop and/or test fertility control methods that are safe, humane and applicable to female wild horse (sic) (mares) and which are longer-lasting than currently available fertility control methods used by the BLM in wild mares” or to “address ecological relationships between WHB and their environments, with studies that may also address the effects of climate change on WHB populations.”
The majority of the grant award of $10 million will be for the equine reproductive research, with the remaining $1 million reserved for studying the effects of climate change and other environmental factors on the species.
The agency’s strategic research plan highlights many previously identified methods of reproduction control, including sterilization and other methods such as “intrauterine devices, oviduct ablation techniques, tubal ligation, ovariectomy.”