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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: Burros, a burden on our deserts, don’t deserve federal protection

Burros
Burros at an animal sanctuary in Ojai.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: The article on the 42 wild burros found dead in the Mojave Desert said that the animals “were never native to the West’s deserts,” “have multiplied without restraint” and have “populations that doubled every four to five years.”

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals successfully promoted legislation that “protects them from capture, harassment, branding or death” as an “integral part of the natural system of public lands” managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Meanwhile, the native animals of the California deserts, from desert bighorn sheep on down, have no protection from the accidentally introduced burros, who sap rare water supplies and are a general nuisance to the rest of us.

Perhaps we need a Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to the Deserts.

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Paul Cooley, Culver City


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