Oppose Cattle Grazing in Arizona Desert Near Wild Horse Area
The U.S. Forest Service (FS) is accepting public comments on an Environmental Assessment (EA) on the proposal to re-issue a permit to graze up to 525 cow/calf pairs year round in the Sunflower Allotment, a 158,000-acre area located in f the Tonto National Forest northeast of Phoenix, Arizona. It’s been more than a decade since cattle were allowed to graze in this sensitive and fragile Sonoran Desert ecosystem, which has not yet recovered from the effects of past overgrazing. It appears that the only reason for reauthorizing grazing in the allotment is that the rancher who holds the permit is selling his ranch, and the property holds far more value if the grazing permit is reissued than if the allotment remains in non-use.
Our coalition partners at the Salt River Wild Horse Management Group are concerned about the impacts of resumed grazing in the Sunflower Allotment, especially because of the allotment’s proximity to habitat used by the unique and publicly cherished Salt River Wild Horses.
The deadline for comments is May 10, so please act today to oppose the FS plan to reauthorize cattle grazing in the Sunflower Allotment.