November 24, 2014
A new study is testing birth control on 90 of the wild mares grazing in the Virginia Mountain Range. If the treatment is effective, it may be one way to control the wild horse population.
From sun up to sun down, five days a week, UNR PhD candidate, Meeghan Gray, will be documenting these horses' every move.
all these guys are grazing...eating.
Since the horses were injected with the contraceptives in June, Meeghan has been watching every aspect of their behavior. Namely, aggression.
The study is a joint project between the University's College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources, the Nevada Department of Agriculture and the Virginia Range Wildlife Protection Association.
Many people argue that wild horse round-ups and adoption are too costly and not effective in controlling the population.
If Gray and her team can prove the contraceptives do not affect the horses' well-being and daily life, then they say it could be the best solution for controlling the wild horse population.
This joint project is considered the first long-term behavioral study of its kind. That's why conclusive results won't be ready until at least another year and a half.