The U.S. Bureau of Land Management will conduct an emergency gathering of wild burros north of Lake Havasu City today in an effort to mitigate a rising public safety concern on State Route 95.
“The purpose of this gather is to help protect wild burros as well as motorists who are traveling to Lake Havasu’s fantastic recreation opportunities,” said BLM Colorado River District Manager William Mack. “It is important for our agency to find the needed balance in public land use that keeps both the public and wildlife safe.”
According to BLM Public Information Officer Valerie Gohlke, motor vehicle accidents can be common as the region’s burros venture into the mountainous roadways of Northern Havasu.
“Burros are difficult to spot because of their dark coloring, and the fact their eyes do not reflect light like deer eyes do,” Gohlke said. “Over the past year and a half, the Colorado River District has been routinely conducting nuisance gathers involving wild burros associated with human health and safety issues, property damage or direct injury to members of the public in the form of biting, kicking or trampling.”
Today’s burro-gathering effort aims to capture about 50 of the animals and transport them to the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Facility in Florence, where they will be prepared for possible adoption, Gohlke said.
Similar gathers have been conducted in the Parker, Kingman and Bullhead City regions this year. Efforts along the Colorado River in August were successful, capturing hundreds of the animals for transport to the Florence facility. The rising number of burros throughout Arizona continues to vex BLM officials, however.
According to past statements from BLM officials, there should be a maximum of 1,676 wild burros in Arizona. As of 2017, there were an estimated 6,241 burros living throughout the state.
For information about how to adopt a wild horse or burro, visit https://www.blm.gov/programs/wild-horse-and-burro.