Let’s hear it for pit BBQ! Burro’s are excellent at protecting herds in the hill country here in Texas and farmers appreciate their herds having a burro to discourage attacks by predators such as coyote. “We’re looking at a system where the big animals were already killed by humans,” Lundgren says. Watched a documentary called “Unbranded” regarding wild mustangs being trained to trail from Mexico to Canada. One possible answer lies in the surface springs of Nevada’s Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, a desert-wetlands preserve on the edge of Death Valley, where the majority of burros were removed in the 1990s. I read here and agree maybe mankind should be eliminated…..i think nature would then be fine if we were taken out of the picture….why do we need these game parks for hunting because it makes $$$$$$$$$$$$…its usually some kind of monetary stuff involved. The resulting springs are “strange and magical places,” he says, starkly isolated groves of densely packed willows and cattails, with game trails leading into the thickets opened up by foraging burros. The BEST thing to do would be to allow them to be hunted. Please support them. I’ve been to Death Valley springs inhabited by wild donkeys. I don’t know if it has ever been done. So there is no benefitr to the native species. My bet is that the ecosystem will thrive, and the predator (mountain lion) population will increase and the donkey population will level off. that cubs often don’t have exposure to more challenging prey. Maintenance of genetic diversity over time is going to require higher population size than even the largest HMA now has. In 2018, Lundgren turned his attention to Death Valley. Yes, yes they are! STUPID PEOPLE!!!!! If you take away the burro, the land will revert to desert with no vegetation. Round ’em up. Fossil records indicate they were once native to the habitat, so perhaps the BLM should do some research themselves or fund it if they have the money before deciding, to remove the burros. At stake is Sourdough Springs that feeds an oasis for vegetation and wildlife in forbidding Death Valley National Park, the largest area of the national park system in the U.S. outside of Alaska. Spay and neuter is neither, even in the hands of the most skilled practitioners. Burros have been a familiar sight in Death Valley going back to the California Gold Rush in the mid-1800s, when prospectors used them as transportation and then left them behind.. Over the next century, the burros multiplied, ate up much of the vegetation and otherwise damaged the ecosystem in the Death Valley area, which was declared a national monument in … He says that while he’s interested in evaluating Lundgren’s research when it comes out next year, he’s also cautious about ascribing benefits to the burros’ presence. Also, they can be very useful during natural disasters to move large quantities of supplies in difficult terrain, to move wounded people. This project takes care of individual burros, allows native habitats to … The study could answers some questions: who benefit most from the donkeys and what native species struggle the most from having them, what species may be extinct do the donkey activities, what kind of land damage and landscape changes cause by the donkeys and if those changes will be permanent, what is the maximum population of the donkeys before the ecosystem collapse, will the underground water go to waste if not discovery by the donkey, what native species benefit from the underground water, how much of impact mountain lions have on the donkey population, and so on. And for gods sakes, do we really not know what happened to Grand Canyon National Park? human – mediated extra – range dispersal). At the same time, she added, “Death Valley is a national park and we’re mandated to preserve the native species, which the burros are in competition for limited resources with.” “Non-native species force you to start making decisions about what kind of ecosystem you want and what your values are.” In addition, burro herds in the park tend to shield themselves by clustering around areas of heavy human habitation, which lions tend to avoid. “Land managers there go and manually remove wild vegetation, doing exactly what the burros were doing for free.”. In this day and age of technology, everything is moving at warp speed, even evolution. The Lost Burro Mine can be found about 2.7 miles SSE of Teakettle Junction through the Lost Burro Gap along the Hidden Valley road. Posted on Jun 27, 2019, The National Park Service illegally approved diversion of a desert spring for a mine outside the park to accommodate “the current administration’s priorities,” according to a complaint filed today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). The young and inexperienced lions that remain have a hard time going after wild burros. This is not native species! Silt hillsides crowned with rock and scree give way to dry streambeds and barren salt flats, the air dancing under a pitiless sun. As for myself, I want to live. For things not easily eradicated if they become a problem, it is a big risk. It was a dream like experience, because the horses were the same color as the dust. “I think looking holistically at this issue — the comparatively low resilience of the system should be measured against the gains [burros provide.] THERE WAS A TIME when the burros were considered indispensable. Increased numbers of predators will eventually have the desired effect of controlling herd over population. Studies defining the benefits of wild equines in their particular environs are rare, and unacceptable to the agencies under Interior that manage them. Jesus came into this world with a donkey watching over Him and rode a donkey into Nazareth. “And it’s really the only water in many of these landscapes. I really don’t see the difference between donkeys and domesticated livestock such as sheep and cattle. The Legacy of Charles Elton. And ranchers are allowed to kill mountain lions that reach a certain age! “And it’s really the only water in many of these landscapes. They “harvest” the first “Kill” of the season on any “Lottery Hunt” !!! This researcher, however, has raised a very interesting question, an introduced species may fill a niche that was occupied by an organism that was driven to extinction by humans. enemy is the Park Service…damned government….leave God’s creatures alone!!!! No different than any other invasive species. Let’s not be fools: it is most definitely a question of desirable vs. undesirable. We need to leave the burros. They are an invasive species and as such are a detriment to the desert environment. Adding big animals back into modern ecosystems changes them in ways we aren’t used to, he argues, and some of the changes “are actually a restoration to the way the world must have been for 15 million years.”, “Places like Death Valley are extremely low-productivity systems, and are pretty water-limited and forage-limited,” says Erik Beever, a research biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey who has worked on the long-term impact of burro and cattle removal in the Mojave Desert. The wild burros of Death Valley stand about 4 feet at the shoulders and weigh about 450 pounds. Keep the Ranchers out and let the animals surviving there alone. Yes, it seems BLM always has an issue with the wildlife, and it always comes down to the ranchers and the cattle on our public lands…..which need to leave. Burros and horses were placed here by man, not nature and they should be taken care of by man to allow for these ecosystems to attempt to return back to at least a large percentage of their normal state. I’ve been to Death Valley springs inhabited by donkeys. You should have paid attention to to how creatures go about their lives as free creatures, not as pets or beasts of burden. Seems to me that the donkeys are doing the rest of the wildlife a big favor at keeping the wet spots open and digging new ones. Domestic cattle have decimated public lands in the western U.S. but Americans love to eat them. The Coast Guard abandoned the island a few years later, leaving the reindeer. Don’t Fix What Ain’t Broke !!! Animals that succeed in New environments should be celebrated. Burros set free by long-ago prospectors who failed to strike it rich in the landscape now known as Death Valley National Park have steadily increased in number. Where they around then? Death Valley National Park is con... tinuing its work to reduce feral burro populations within the park's boundaries. In addition, burro herds in the park tend to shield themselves by clustering around areas of heavy human habitation, which lions tend to avoid. Humans are so filthy, greedy, arrogant and selfish that they knowingly do this. Burros were introduced to the southern deserts of the United States and Mexico by the Spaniards in the 1500's. “Exotic” herbivores like burros seem to be ensuring the springs stay open, she says, though it’s healthiest for the ecosystem at large if they don’t linger for too long. But as far as he knows, well-digging behavior and its impacts in Death Valley have never been the subject of formal scientific research. . His study revealed the same 50% infant mortality rate that kept the population at its low end and correlated directly with a resident cougar population. Get the ball rolling. Burros should be eradicated. One point, the horses and the burro’s were not native BUT the government knew what was RIGHT, RIGHT. Invasive burros, Equua asinus, are often called donkeys and can be found throughout the backcountry in Death Valley.They are an introduced species that originally descended from the African wild ass and are NOT native to North America. Photographs of these wells have been used as evidence of negative burro impact, Lundgren says. I get the point of herd control for burros Ana wild mustangs. Beautifully written, indeed. As it is a blind surgery, there is no guarantee that damage isn’t done to other internal organs, such as puncturing the bowel. The burros are playing a vital role in the ecosystem, especially in light of the fact that the megafauna are extinct. https://www.metacafe.com/watch/1355176/lost_burro_mine_death_valley At first glance, the burro problem seems like a cut-and-dried example of “invasion biology,” a conservation subdiscipline that focuses on the destructive impact of non-native species — from cats and rats that wreak havoc on island ecosystems to Asian carp and zebra mussels that clog inland waterways. But could the mammals be helping native species flourish? What other business gets to take someone else’s land and claim it as their own to just drop off animals to eat and destroy the landscape and then pick em up later to go slaughter? The most invasive species of all lacks the will and brains to prevent its own self destruction. They compete with native species for browse and scarce water. Burro populations do need priority for genetic management. I agree there is always change. Leaving no food to regrow for either the feral or natie animals. Familiar with the area? In short, it is what it is and it is changing. You go first! Death Valley has over 600 springs and ponds. Thought provoking. I cannot even imagine how difficult it must have been. In my area, I have the evidence of my own eyes and biological surveys. Visual: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times via Getty. Originally they are from Africa (where they were called Wild Asses), but have been surviving happily for the past 500 years in the dry deserts such as Death Valley. They can work this problem out. No other species has right to share anything without humans mercy. Parenje Zebri Zebra Befruchtung zebra fertilization. Those wild burros aren’t hurting anything out there.,they have been there for a long time. As a result the deer population exploded and that winter State wildlife had to fly in and drop hay to these starving deer. The damage wrought by burros to vegetation communities is staggering and increasing, and the herd keeps expanding and spreading. How selfish and uncaring. Email High Country News at [email protected] or submit a letter to the editor. “They aren’t a change from some iron-clad [environmental] truth, and it’s not really scientific to act like they are. The author also seems to indicate that the very real situation here is that these ecosystems are ALWAYS changing, no matter how static we seem to think they are. They will just boom bust anyway… just like st.matthew island. Yes, if predation is there than it is a huge factor. While we are working on improved techniques, this will, at best, be a partial solution. His work has appeared in The Oxford American, the Texas Observer and The Bitter Southerner. With BLM, their always seems to be an issue with wildlife. Burros from Death Valley National Park are heading towards sanctuaries and adoptive homes thanks to a major project made possible by the nonprofit Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue. To determine the benefit and destruction there need to be 10 years study follow up with 20 years study and finally the 50 years study. They can’t grab enough (public) lands to graze more cattle so now burros and wild horses must be removed. I hope and pray there will be a better way to handle them then “killing” them. The amount of vegetation they consume annually is also an important point in determining if there is a healthy balance or limit. I don’t agree with the cruelty of it. I saw the same NOVA. they want to get rid of every thing that lives and breaths. Just because they are in their way. It’s rare indeed that man improves an eco system when the profit motive is present and that’s exactly what we’re talking about. There are wild horses in Death Valley too, their survival there is miraculous, and a wonderful testament to life. As the cougars diminished, the horse population grew. I believe you are absolutely right. yea anytime someones tells you they are an expert but you can’t ask any questions and just trust them…. Wild burros in Death Valley National Park were introduced in the 1800s. ), “There’s an opportunity here to tell people a really interesting story about the dynamism of nature and deep time and ecological change, as opposed to this simplistic black-and-white story that exists in our minds,” Lundgren said. God bless. ‘The people here made the plant. More research needs to be done in this area before we just get rid of certain species. We must reverse the anthropocene , prevent donkey caused plant species extinctiom, and and shrink the donkey carbon hoofprint, which is massive. The answer to the question, “Are they the enemy?”, is always yes. Death Valley Burros: Tracking an Invasive Species. Death Valley National Park is con... tinuing its work to reduce feral burro populations within the park's boundaries. “I think that the idea that these organisms are evolving and responding to each other in this novel system is just so interesting and beautiful, and much more optimistic as a vision of nature, than this fragile native space that needs to be protected.”. There is no doubt we have done more damage to the environment here, and everywhere else, than the animals we let loose around us. How heartless. Much of this area of Death Valley National Park is designated wilderness. (The park’s next set of trapping and adoptions, once again in partnership with Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue, is set to take place this month. This world is theirs too. Several publications have pegged burro population growth directly to birth rates, without recording how many foals actually survive to adulthood. DSCN3572.AVI. However, to actually carry out such a program successfully and, most importantly, humanely is not a simple thing. When are we going to let nature take its course and improve the lot in life for all creatures, especially those who survive as a result of donkeys’ innovative handiwork? Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue to Lead “Save Death Valley’s Wild Burros” Project. arguing that exotic animals — including burros — are filling important roles in ecosystems. And the burros have changed too, from what their North African ancestors were to what they are today in the American Southwest. Naturalization – invasion continuum – A conceptualization of the progression of stages and phases in the status of an alien organism in a new environment which posits that the organism must negotiate a series of barriers. Of these, a subset has the capacity to spread over substantial distances from introduction sites. Death Valley National Park is an American national park that straddles the California–Nevada border, east of the Sierra Nevada.The park boundaries include Death Valley, the northern section of Panamint Valley, the southern section of Eureka Valley, and most of Saline Valley.The park occupies an interface zone between the arid Great Basin and Mojave deserts, protecting the … Be happy, at the same time take deep breath and think positively and act with plan to help, teach and learn from other human, animal and plants. Wasn’t this tried with the wolves in Yellowstone? A lot of us felt that it was going to be a big mistake, it was, but the BLM and the FS look at it to create another agency. Sickening for sure. “Would they react that way if such a wolf decimated their livestock, killed their pet dogs, cats, etc., and tried to attack them…” Yes. So my first question is: What happens when you remove the animals keeping these wells open?”. They a beautiful animals and GOD’s creatures just like you and I. Mankind couldn’t have survived all over the world without them hauling their firewood, water, sticks and stones. The apex predators were eradicated largely because of cattle predation and now there are “too many burros”.  A scientific study attributed the population crash to the limited food supply in interaction with climatic factors (the winter of 1963–64 was exceptionally severe in the region). This will give you the bigger picture of how the ecosystem will response to the donkeys. Humans are not entitled to pets and should stop raising livestock at the expense of wild species. Today most of the species earlier than human evolve are destroyed. It’s possible that some of the behavior decried in wild burros — well digging, for example — may have been present in America’s Pleistocene horses, camels, and rhinos, which went extinct long before Europeans re-introduced equids to the West. There are also roving burros… They are not evil. i propose that the full culli g of donkeys should be coordinated with the abbatois so that good meat does not go to waste. Correct both times. Just to add. Attitudes to the presence and value of large herbivores on arid lands need to change. It may looks strong but in reality it is not. Death Valley National Park hopes to be burro-free within the next five years. However, people who do not actually do these surgeries often see them as a panacea and a ‘risk free’ approach. Interesting article with some balance information. As with nearly all issues in biology, it’s very context-dependent, so they may be more helpful in some years than others.”, “Places like Death Valley are extremely low-productivity systems, and are pretty water-limited and forage-limited,” says Erik Beever, a research biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey who has worked on the long-term impact of burro and cattle removal in the Mojave Desert. When you take a life away you take everything away. Central America, South America,. TRNP runs a near perfect program for their wild horses. This story, however, brings back the memory that sometimes people consider introducing a different species to a niche to replace an extinct species. Leave the burros alone or relocate them. I agree with Lili, these animals have every right to live as we humans do. My knee-jerk reaction is always to get rid of the exotic species, horses, burros, goats, domesticated then feralized cats,…. The burros, descendants of animals brought to Death Valley by 19th-century prospectors, are a "non-native" species in the park. Burros in Death Valley Discussion in ' West – California, the desert southwest and whatev ' started by motocopter , Oct 19, 2019 . Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue to Lead “Save Death Valley’s Wild Burros” Project. . same goes for the silver spring monkeys in Florida…. I care for feral or community cats so I understand the problem to a point. Export 1/3 of the burro population to Burro Mountain, New Mexico just 20 miles southwest of Silver City , New Mexico. Most of the burros range within Management units 1 through 5 on the west side of Death Valley. They removed the coyotes, then donkeys because their populations started to boom, and the land further degraded. It’s a nice thought that the burros dig these ‘wells’ and this benefits the native species but the burros don’t share the wells. these deeds will be a long sad painful death till nature is allowed to balance what the obsolete successful man of today cannot fathom . Why do all these studies on the impact of grazing either omit grazing livestock or make a point to include them in the survey but then recommend wild horse and burro removal? Wild Donkeys may be a keystone animal for the desert; however this should be studied empirically. The Lost Burro Mine can be found about 2.7 miles SSE of Teakettle Junction through the Lost Burro Gap along the Hidden Valley road. From the beginning, according to Lundgren, the scientific literature on Southwestern burros has assumed they are undesirable, and has emphasized the damage they cause. There in not one blade of grass left on the property and the management is 99% volunteer. I traveled to Death Valley and Fort Irwin to film efforts by the Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue to remove burros from national park lands. Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on FlipBoard (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window). Burros of Death Valley represent a remarkable case study in resilience and potential adaptation, and are part of a far more nuanced debate about how … Wild burros. Why is it *any* surprise that the plants they evolved with are benefitting from them being there? “leave the ecosystem alone including the burros” That’s simplistic. Making love the Wild Ass way! Originally brought in by miners over 100 years ago, burros aren't native to this landscape and without predators here populations have soared -- growing at roughly 20% yearly! These kinds of unforeseen consequences are common in conservation land management, Davis says, and the onus for environmental damage tends to be placed on non-native species rather than other factors that might be amiss in the ecosystem, like the absence of predators. In the late 1800s, mining towns spread throughout the Southwest, pulling mineral wealth out of places like California’s Death Valley. We can’t even manage ourselves, let alone NATURE !!!! Honestly, the Fish and Game and the Park People are,,,, in my opinion,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, should be dissolved, and gone. How is world is surviving it is unknown. If rounded up the following years will show more births, if added mother nature stressors (predation etc) than more births, if little stressors, than less births. Mr. Beever’s studies and opinions disregard any positivity regarding wild equines, but a single, anecdotal observation years ago somehow manages to make its way into many Environmental Assessments for the removal of wild equines: How plants are disappearing for the sake of human need. “The lack of predation is an assumption that’s carried around without anyone explicitly testing it.”, In the course of the 2018 and 2019 field seasons spent monitoring Death Valley field sites in areas like Willow Canyon and Mesquite Spring, Lundgren says he has found considerable evidence of predation: around 33 burro carcasses in the riparian vegetation, half of which he characterizes as undeniable kills from mountain lions. Alone including the burros were doing for free. ” kill all these.... 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