Contributors to this thread:
Okay I was watching Tucker Carlson the other night and there was a cowboy type who was a big advocate of horse meat..HUUUUUH??? But I do have to admit he made some really valid points...heck I would try it I guess. I have seen a few wild horses and they are really a sight to behold in the west and not sure I would ever want to shoot one but..they are hitting the western environment in a hard way and as big as a moose or bigger. and it is a real dilemma what to do with them..
Why would it be different than elk or moose really
Lewis and Clark ate theirs a couple times and made it all the way home.
Rancher friend of mine had too many horses some years back, and the meat market wasn't worth it so he slaughtered some for the freezer.
It's not bad. Similar to venison in that it's easy to dry out. Sometimes I wonder how my horses would taste when they act up;)
Bou why is shooting a dog different than a coyote. I mean I wouldn’t have a problem with a horse, but if it had been my horse and I was attached to it - different story
Wild horses and burros are destroying a lot of public land out West.
I'd hunt them, I think it would be a real challenge, and the meat yield would be impressive!
I tried Mule meat while in Austria . Wasn't bad at all. Figure horse must taste similar. As far as shooting one , if its legal count me in !
It's just because you have been isolated. Horse is eaten all over the world. Some places eat a lot and some a little, so association has more to do with location. Just like some people love cat meat and some people think that is disgusting. I LOVE muskrat. People (who dont know any better) think I am off my rocker.
Don't see why not, there are a couple other countries I know of where it is fairly common to eat it.
The overpopulation of non-native horses and buros in the western states is a big issue.
The numbers are above carrying capacity across most or all of the areas where they roam and the BLM holding area that was set up to handle excess horses from the range is over capacity as well. They have no native predators to keep their numbers in check. These non-native animals are out competing native animals for limited food and water resources.
If you pay attention in the wild horse management areas, you will notice significantly lower diversity and big game species in the areas where there are horses.
If you look at the fence lines between the horse management areas and surrounding areas without horses you will notice significant differences in the vegetation from one side to the other - not just the grasses the horses eat, but the shrub species that they trample.
If you look at the water sources in the horse management areas, you will not see much vegetation as it has all been beaten to dust by the horses.
Management of these non-native animals under the Wild Horse and Burro act of 1971 that does not allow for shooting them or using them for food (even for animal food) and places significant restrictions on rounding them up costs us millions of dollars annually and gets more expensive every year.
Why not sell licenses and allow hunting to keep these on-native animal populations in balance?
The BLM would quit burning money on the management of these animals and would finally be able to keep the numbers within the carrying capacity.
It would also allow native wildlife to recover in those areas and provide more hunting opportunities for those species.
I would be all for the use of hunting to manage these animals. I would also butcher and eat any horse I shot.
Option B would be total elimination of them from the western ranges with no leasing of those lands for livestock grazing to allow recovery of native wildlife in those areas.
my business partner is from china and swears donkey meat is the best meat in the world....so i guess why not
Horse meat is good. It's taboo because you normally don't eat transportation...
I have eaten in Europe, not bad!
I keep donkey meat in the freezer. That way, any time I want a piece of ass....
Horse is good, so is cat, kangaroo, and dog. Different cultures different tastes. if you haven't tried it then you can't comment. same with squirrel and other critters. it's all meat just a little different taste and texture. I don't get why people get so hung up on a name of an animal, if you are hungry enough, you will eat anything placed in front of you ... my wife says no Monkey, but I say... Yummy on the grill!
Pretty sure I ate some in France, tasted pretty good, tasted like venison as I remember, but that was in the eighties. It's popular over there! I love horses, but we need a market for the excess and lame ones. They are livestock and feral animals depending on the situation, need to be controlled like everything else!
They also make good sleeping bags when it's cold.
They should have never been allowed to be called “wild” in any legislative language...
They are feral, non-native, and invasive, they should be eradicated from all wild lands, just like feral swine (not wild pigs)
Wild horses are an invasive species, and need control. That said, I am a horseman, and I like horses. I'm not eating them. (Nor would I eat feral dogs or cats.)
Nor am I "hunting" them. They would be a terrible game species. This needs another solution.
There was a frozen food truck that came around a couple years ago, similar to Swanse or whatever it is called. They mostly sold food to tourist camps, but decided to stop at our place I guess. They had horse on their product list for sale. I’d have a bit of a hard time eating it I think.
Horse=McRoyal with cheese in Montreal
Deertick, why would horses be a terrible game species? The are big, smart, tough and have a lot of meat on them.
Non-lethal attempts to control their populations has proven to be miserable failure.
Having some feral horses running around out in the sagebrush is kind of cool, especially for city folks. I’m OK with a few out there, but the numbers out there now are ridiculous and they are destroying the range.
The costs are huge associated with the wild horse program. Rounding them up and hauling them to a giant feedlot that is overcrowded and has no more space. Then feeding and medicating them in that feedlot till they die of “natural” causes 20 or more years later. While the numbers on the range keep increasing beyond what the land can support and starving. That is humane? Pretty stupid if you ask me.
Hunting would generate revenue to offset and eventually eliminate the costs.
All the horses in the holding area should be butchered and sold - even if just for dog food.
If hunting and ending the holding pen is not an option, I am 100% in favor of total eradication on my public lands.
Would also be a great source to feed zoo animals
Just one more Bad law the libs push though. Travis hits the nail on the head completely. The solution is simple, but several people have to grow a set and make hard , correct decisions. All horses in holding pens need to be rounded up and slaughter. Then the rest on Mangent areas control though hunting or rounding up enough to bring population in check . Now the whole problem is when the act went into effect and latter legislation that outlawed the slaughter of horses in this country put all the places that use to process horses out of business. I know there are some in Canada that process horses not sure about Mexico. So they would have to be hauled a long ways and then there are the hoops you have to jump through going into a different country .
I loved horses as a kid. Wild Horse Annie seemed like a superhero to my young mind.
Treeline covered the reality very well, I think. Sign me up.
Treeline X2. Pretty well sums it up!!
I ate horse in France and Poland, it was pretty good actually...
Oh no, not Mr Ed. Say it ain't so. I don't think the American public would go for horse meat let alone a hunting season for them. The anti hunting. Groups would jump all over it and raise funds like never before, giving them huge power in the banning of all hunting.
You would have to figure out, how to score the head, for the books
I found zebra to be one of my favorite meats in Africa. Didn’t believe till I tried it. Properly prepared it is delicious.
The internet cowboys want a horse season... imagine that
The horse represents the west, the west was settled on horseback, the horse gives the west a proud heritage,,,,,,, I would not consider it an invasive species,,,,,,,,
With that said, excess horses that need to be destroyed for whatever reason, should feed those who are hungry, nothing wrong with that meat
I'm not saying they shouldn't be dealt with -- I just think hunting them is a pretty poor option. They are not a game species -- maybe a varmint. But even varmints are not hunted well to eradication (in modern times). A better solution is rounding them up, and then slaughtering them for food, though there is the problem of Americans not eating horse meat. That won't change overnight, and I doubt it ever will, so then we'd ship the meat elsewhere. Humane slaughter of horses should be brought back for a number of reasons, and feral horses are part of that. But feral dogs are a problem, too. Does anyone seriously propose that Americans could somehow be coached to develop a taste for hunting and eating feral dogs (and cats)? I like dogs, cats, and horses. The fact that there are destructive feral populations of each is Man's fault, and we have a responsibility to deal with it. Because of the intense co-evolved relationship we have with these species, we must deal with this humanely. I just think dreams of "hunting" and eating horses will never happen -- even if legal. There are other, better ways of reducing or eliminating herds.
I agree LB Shooter, hunting horses will do us no good, not in our culture. IMO populations that are devastating the habitat need to be controlled swiftly by a culling program and not hunting. Its not easy, there are definitely challenges all around with whatever option is considered.
Feral dogs and cats - shoot on sight. Guess that’s my ranch upbringing. Have never and will never pick one up to eat unless it is a survival situation. They are not a game species and are significantly detrimental to native game species.
Feral pigs are hunted across their range. Most states have no restrictions on day-night, time of year, weapons, shooting from vehicles, helicopters, etc. They are not a game species but are sure hunted hard!
Why would hunting horses not be a good option?
Hunting is significantly more humane than rounding them up off the range and penning them in overcrowded holding pens till they die. I would also argue that hunting them is significantly more humane than either rounding them up for mechanical slaughtering, paid sharp shooters, or letting them die of starvation.
Hunting horses would be a PR nightmare for hunters. Personally, I wouldn't even consider going out and trying to kill one even if the tag was free. No interest.
Round them up and slaughter for dog food.
I ate quite a bit of horse meat while living in France. It's very good. I think that it would be a political loser to propose a hunting season. The animal nut jobs went so far as to pass laws to shut down slaughter houses exporting horse meat, inadvertently causing far more suffering for horses. I can't imagine the media campaign they'd launch over a horse hunting season.
Maybe someone should look at getting a season going? Im positive it would take pressure off the griz hunt! Anti's would FREAK OUT.
Sounds like your ‘calling’ Treeline
Do wolves eat horses? I'm just curious, because it seems if they share the same range with elk and mule deer, wouldn't they also eat horses and their ponies? I'm totally oblivious, because I'm not sure if they even inhabit the same areas, but just thinking out loud?
Zebra is the closest I've had to eating horse and it was actually really good. I'll admit, I was hesitant at first.
I had some in Switzerland it was good
“Because of the intense co-evolved relationship we have with these species, we must deal with this humanely. I just think dreams of ‘hunting’ and eating horses will never happen -- even if legal. There are other, better ways of reducing or eliminating herds.”
If Hunting isn’t “humane” enough or “good” enough (I have no idea what you mean by “better”), then ALL of Hunting - small game, deer, Elk, Moose, bears, cougars, coyotes, goats, sheep, hogs, or what-have-you - ALL of it needs to be stopped in favor of these same, “better” alternatives you have in mind (but which you haven’t quite proposed by name) for the horses and burros.
Biologically, the difference between a horse and a hog, or a cat or a goat or a dog - is nil. It’s 100% emotional/cosmetic.
If we're ready to concede to an environmental train wreck here, we may as well throw in the towel on whitetails and coyotes while we’re at it.
Blows my mind that people think that it should be easier and less controversial to get seasons opened/re-opened on cougars, wolves and grizzlies than on a bunch of ferals which are close to pushing threatened/endangered native species over the edge.
Believe it or not, the average Non-Hunter is capable of rational thought.
The Federal government is too busy trying to slaughter all the bison in the Grand Canyon National Park (claiming it is a non-native species) to spend any time trying to control horses and burros which very clearly are non-native species (and yet are protected by them). Typical government.
Wild horse management is done in a terrible way. The government doesn't allow the public to go gather horses, but hires someone to do it, and the way it's done is a joke!! Most of the ones caught are old. In New Mexico and Arizona, the Navajos just turn their horses out onto the land to fend for themselves. In some places, the horses are a huge problem. Only recently was a law passed allowing people to pick them up, no questions asked. But many don't do it.
As for hunting them, we see them all the time in unit 2 in New Mexico, and is like to see it done. Horses are very smart and run from trucks or even people hundred of yards away.
As for eating horse, if you don't know what you're eating, you'd never know it was horse. Just all all animals, the younger horses are the best, with no taste difference then beef.
I knew a forest ranger (retired) that worked in the Jic Ranger District of the Carson NF (aka unit 2 NM) who hated the horse problem, called them weeds, and wished they could be irradiated.
Midwest is right it would be a PR nightmare to hunt them...
I have zero problems with hunting them. However, I see no sense in rounding them up. I'd simply shoot the vermin from the air and, let the buzzards and worms clean them up. Round up the affordable ones for dog food and, snipe the ones harder to get to. Problem solved.
Its getting time for humans to be made responsible for stupid human decisions.
Parts of Italy still use horse meat to make mortadella, the king of bologna..
The hypocrisy of people who clamor for the "re-introduction" of wolves because they are a native species while simultaneously advocating for "wild" horses tells me these people will never be won over. They go on pure emotion in spite of logic. Arguing with them is pointless.
Now, if wild horses can contract and spread cwd, then maybe the government will grow a pair and eradicate the lot of them.
After high school in the 80s, I worked on a ranch and most of the horses were mustangs caught in the 70s. They always talked about doing one more round up and I was all in but it never materialized. They are part of the American West but not as protected wildlife. They should be utilized and managed so they fit in without too much impact on wildlife and land resources.
Feral horses and donkeys need to be managed. Nobody touts the nostalgia of feral hogs running wild and free. Horses and donkeys are no different. I'd hunt and eat either in a heartbeat. Agree with Treeline.
If one wants to eat horse meat, I see nothing wrong with such.. Ive had Dog and Monkey while in Olongapo, PI. ...
Lever Action, I'm with you on the muskrat, about as good a game meat as there is. grandpa said they ate horse/mule/donkey in the Depression.
I've skinned so many muskrats, I don't think I could eat one due to the fact they have the most rancid smelling guts of any animal I know. If I broke a gut or two while skinning a pile of rats, my farts would smell like muskrat guts afterwards!
I grew up as a skinner working for a local fur buyer in the early '70's during Jr. high and high school years.... Ive skinned, fleshed, stretched thousands of 'rats in those years, along with my own rats I trapped... I made good money back then trapping and skinning, not only rats, but coon, beaver, Fox(red&grays), coyote, mink, weasel, 'possum and skunk ... Muskrat when fresh was just like rabbit and is very good, same for beaver .. ...
They should be exterminated. They're invasive and causing damage. If it were legal, I would hunt the heck out of them.
When my daughter was in hunter ed, there was a Chinese guy from LA who was there with some relatives who were also doing hunter ed. He said that the Chinese consider donkey such a delicacy, that if hunting wild burros were legalized, they'd be shot up in a jiffy as all the orientals in L.A. would swarm the desert to hunt them. I say let em.
That's funny Midwest , and very true. I have put up rats for 35 or so years and always have the same result!
Horse tags..... sign me up! I'd do it in a second, really wouldn't care who's feathers it ruffled.... eatin' one would almost be justice considering all the chunks they'd taken out of me over the years.....
Years ago they had a herd of feral donkeys on the Big Isle. Folks there hunted them. I've had some jerky and a couple roasts from them, very good...... wouldn't go as far as calling them the best ass I've ever had though.....
A group of PETAphiles got a law passed protecting them was what I was told. Went from being a decent food hunt to being illegal. OTOH..... they worked hard at eradicating the Big Isle axis herd and are working at eradicating pigs, goats and sheep..... and protecting the donkey in the same breath..... that's a special kind of crazy right there.....
Yep Tom, that is totally f-d up for sure! Wrong in the head!
HDE. The guy doing the trapping out there in unit 2 in New Mexico is a joke!! We talked to him several times, and was usually 30 to 40 horses short of his quota. We see the wild horses out there all the time, and the stallions are just plain mean, and something you don't want to tangle with. They will chase you off water tanks and follow you...
A few years ago there was two hoses running around with arrows in them, and it wasn't a pretty sight the way the feds came pulling into elk camp one day round noon, checking equipment and looking for information.
Horse meat has to be cooked at same temp as bear and pork, has Trichinosis.
Trichinosis infects an animal by the animal eating the muscle tissue of an infected animal. This is why carnivores usually have it and herbivores don’t. I’m skeptical that horses can have trichinosis.
I'm all for hunting them but agree with midwest. As for the "co-evolved" viewpoint, yes, culturally, we domesticated horses and used them - for transportation and food.
“yes, culturally, we domesticated horses and used them - for transportation and food.“
Except in North America, where we hunted them to extinction before figuring out that domestication was another valuable option. We never would have had the Great Plains Horse Culture if the Euros hadn’t reintroduced them...
Trichinosis concerns strike me as something that the PETA types would make up to make hunting them seem pointless.
After the war, my dad crewed on a boat that was taking a bunch of Mustangs over to Poland to replenish their supply.... probably the last time there was a lot of demand for them....
It amazes me that we Americans think we ought to be able to dictate to the rest of the world what is/is not OK to eat.
But it’s not as if any one end of the political spectrum has a corner on hypocrisy. I guess what qualifies you for the “Center” is a willingness to recognize your own hypocrisies and reconsider them....
Too bad we can’t easily show all the bad issues on commercials and the news to get public support for changing the law.
"...the stallions are just plain mean, and something you don't want to tangle with. They will chase you off water tanks and follow you..."
Yep, they do the same thing to elk. It causes me no [emotional] pain at all to see horse carcasses out in unit 2...
Many of the wild horse herds don’t even have Spanish horse genetics.
There are large numbers of horses that are descended from animals dumped by people that couldn’t or wouldn’t take care of them so they could “be free”...
Google it...there were major outbreaks in France. France along with Quebec, are horse meat eaters. Camels Walruses are also carriers.
"Google it...there were major outbreaks in France"
As for causation, everything I see is domestic horses, that were fed infected animal waste to fatten them up, and exported. I doubt if a wild horse would voluntarily eat an infected carcass.
The grass Wild horses eat possibly have snails infected with the parasite, perched on the blades of grass. A wild horse, while grazing ingests a snail, accidentally ingesting an infected snail.
Same way our moose here contacted brain worm, by accidentally ingesting snails.
Just to be politically correct (or incorrect) there should be no reference of horses in the US as “wild”. They are feral and should be referred to as such.
There's a strong kill market in Japan for horses. Buyers buy colts and yearling draft horses at auction in the U.S. for market value, truck them to Washington state to feed lots then there are flown live to Japan to slaughter. Some expensive meat by the time it gets there.
Carrols which has now turned into Burger King got in some major trouble in the 70's for serving burgers that were made with horse meat. I used to love those burgers, a lot better then the garbage they serve today!! Shawn
It's funny I've always thought there was an incredible opportunity for non-hunters to acquire meat. I've seen lame horses for sale for a bargain time after time. I'm thinking you'd want to "finish" them for a few months first but cost of animal is next to nothing. Just so counter cultural here. I've often had the conversation with people about topics like that and you'll get responses like "that would be horrible if someone would consider eating a horse" to which I'll usually respond "but if you'll eat beef, isn't that like animal discrimination?"
This picture was taken within 1/2 mile of my house and is 5 acres that are fenced in so the feral horses can’t get to the vegetation. We have over 100 head that live within a 3 mile 180 degree radius of our house and they’ve absolutely destroyed the desert which has resulted in the few deer that lived here leaving and I haven’t seen a chukar since 2010. They need to be dealt with but the lib’s are too stupid to realize the damage they cause.
They also remove sage brush and other shrubs and will pull it out to get to the grass that grows within the brush. There’s another shrub they really like to eat and they have nearly eradicated those. It’s a dark green shrub with coral colored blooms but I can never remember its name.
horses could be a great food source if American's didn't have a stigma against eating them me? I'd eat horse, absolutely, I never had but would
Wow that's a stark photo Tilzbow!
There is no logic. The same sort of folks have programs that capture feral cats, neuter them, and then re-release them in the city. Never mind the number of songbirds they kill, or the fact that they are FERAL!!!
Or here in Santa Fe NM there is an ordinance that prairie dogs need to be relocated when an area is developed. Companies make a living vacuum sucking them out of their burrows into a padded truck and relocating them. But it's fine to doze over packrats, mice and rattle snakes. Prairie dogs rank higher on the "cute" meter I guess.
"Wild" horses are treated with reverence. "Wild" pigs, goats, boa constrictors not so much. Call all of them what they are: FERAL.
Heck there are a lot of hunters who say "I could never shoot a zebra...that would be like shooting a horse". Say what?!
From: Deertick 28-May-18 " There are other, better ways of reducing or eliminating herds. "
The BLM hasnt found a way They cant give away the ones they have. We live near a reservation, the next 5-6 miles north of me there are over 600. They are a real problem.
They haven't found a way because slaughter is illegal. They are a terrible problem. No doubt. Very destructive. Rounding them up for slaughter would be WAY more efficient than any other means. Adoption is a proven failure if the goal is population control. Legalizing horse slaughter would be a great start. There would be none to hunt if that came to pass.
At least the national park service is able to get rid of them on their lands as they are not bound by the 1971 Law.
Although, I am not sure that they are going to find homes for the 2,500 burros that they anticipate getting rounded up out of Death Valley.
Ballot with 3 boxes:
I will adopt a feral horse/donkey and keep it myself
I will donate $$$ for somebody else to adopt the critter
I will pay $100 for a hunting permit to reduce said critter to possession in my freezer
BLM has actually proposed paying people $1000 to take the Feral horses they round up.
Having lived and hunted in Feral horse range it's bad. Had a stallion follow me, till I hit it with a couple rocks. I wish I could have sent something more lethal his way! Had a BLM Law Enforcement Officer tell me if they found a dead horse or heard of one, they wouldn't do anything about it....
Those opposed to dealing with the horses but smart enough to see the environmental concern tend to argue that all cattle and sheep grazing on public lands must be eliminated first before they can blame feral horses for anything...
Other livestock grazing is regulated and the leasees required to rotate the grazing and maintain the fences and water sources or they can lose their lease.
Under the feral horse protection law, everybody’s hands are tied.
Obviously, there are not many people that want to adopt these horses.
They should be hauled and dumped on anyone’s lawn, subdivision or city park that votes to keep them. Same goes for wolves... That would change some minds!
The BLM could make ban
" I LOVE muskrat" Yeah me too.
My daughter had a "smart horse" Wild caught when a foal. The big advantage that horse was tough and smart. Sold he to an outfitter for a pack horse.
So many are inbreed and weak.
I'm in. ...heck I've eaten @ MacDonald several times. ...where do you think the $1 menu came from.
Im an expert on this topic I have about 20 around my property and a 100 in the area and I own horses. Hate them with a passion shoot them with blunts every chance I get they get in and eat my hay, they get in and fight with my horses have crippled a 15,000. horse a couple of times . I will let you know how they taste I dont think it is illegal to hunt them if they are deemed feral and they are by the state so come and hunt them this is in Placitas NM just north of albq if we can hunt feral hogs this is no different. theres not a blade of grass in the hills around here the rabbit brush has taken over , I have a dumbass neighbor that feeds them out of spite .sorry Need to rant . anyway they are a big problem lets do something
I happen to be in Europe currently and saw horse at the market. I thought if this thread and tried it. Was pretty good.
stick slinger, that's pretty interesting. Is that a sausage product of some sort? "Cavallo" I ger and I think "Zrebicek" is the brand name. "Salama" suggests a cured sausage?
I'm in. ...heck I've eaten @ MacDonald several times. ...where do you think the $1 menu came from.
Sorry for delayed double post....not sure how it happened.
I'd looked into it before, but did some online sleuthing to refresh my memory.
Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971: The act provides specific protections to "all unbranded and unclaimed horses and burros on public lands of the United States," and makes it a crime for anyone to harass or kill these animals on federal land.
The way I read it, horses & burros are only protected on federal land? That would be National Forest/Grassland & BLM? So on Private they can be killed, no? What about on State land?
smarba, that's interesting... I'd book a burro/mustang bowhunt on a ranch if the price was right
That could be interesting...
...the other red meat! Don't want to try horse...there are restaurants in China that specialize in donkey meat!
I ate some of my zebra in Africa.That's pretty close to a horse I'd say and I thought it was very good
I’m not going to show my wife this thread. I’ve been in arguments with her about the wild horses taking over areas out west. Dumb argument when you live near Philadelphia
I'm usually good at keeping the freezer full...but I'm open to eat horse...get one of those off years and strip the saddle and bridle and start the barbie YEEEEHAAAAAAAA....roast em Cowboy!!!!