By Scott Sonner, AP
Reno, NV – Federal inspectors are recommending the Bureau of Land Management step up its research into population control methods for wild horses to help curb the spiraling costs of rounding them up.
A report the Interior Department's inspector general issued Monday mostly defends the BLM roundups often criticized by horse protection advocates.
Inspectors say they found no evidence of inhumane treatment of animals and concluded the roundups are necessary to cull the overpopulated herds that take a toll on the health of the range.
The OIG says the agency's budget for gathering and housing the mustangs has nearly doubled the last six years to $66 million this year. But it says if left unchecked, the number of wild horses will grow from the current 38,000, to 238,000 by 2020.