CARTHAGE, Mo. — In the market for a wild horse or burro? You can adopt one on April 5 or 6.
The Bureau of Land Management will hold an adoption and sale event that weekend at the Civil War Ranch in Carthage, 11838 Civil War Road. Animals will be available from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, April 5, and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 6.
All horses will have been examined by a vet, vaccinated, dewormed and blood-tested. Those purchasing a horse should have adequate feed, care and an enclosed area such as a corral, barn stall or other accommodations to house the horse. Any horse or burro purchased at the event must be transported in stock-type, step-up trailer.
Jason Lutterman, spokesman for the program, said buyers will also need to have a 6-foot-tall fence and at least 200 square feet of roaming space. Adopters will obtain the title to the animal one year after adoption upon completion of a veterinary examination.
"You should be an experience horse trainer if you plan on riding or using the horse," Lutterman said. "The animals are untouched, straight from the wild."
This week, the BLM launched a program that lowered the adoption price from $125 to $25 and is offering incentives for adoption of untrained horses by offering up to $1,000. Adopters receive $500 within 60 days of adoption and another $500 within 60 days of titling each animal.
"This is geared toward helping folks get their facilities ready for a mustang if they need to raise their fence or get their corrals ready," Lutterman said. "If they plan on having the horse trained, that financial incentive can help with that as well."
The event will feature Greg Reynolds, a horse trainer with experience in gentling wild mustangs. He will be on-site both days to demonstrate gentling and training techniques.
The wild horse and burro program was started by the Bureau of Land Management as part of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act. Each year, the bureau removes thousands of wild horses as part of the program and in fiscal year 2018 removed nearly 11,500 horses and burros.
"We are responsible for making sure these animals have everything that they need out on the range and are protected," Lutterman said. "These horses don't have any natural predators, so we have to manage their population."
The bureau estimates there are nearly 82,000 wild horses and burros across 10 states in the West. Herds can increase by 15 to 20 percent per year.
Those interested in adopting a horse can submit applications on-site until the close of the event on Saturday, April 6. For more information on the program, visit www.blm.gov/programs/wild-horse-and-burro.