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Law allows slaughter of wild horses for meat

Wednesday, March 2, 2005
By BRAD KNICKERBOCKER / The Christian Science Monitor

ASHLAND, Ore. — Wild horses have always symbolized freedom and the frontier. But ranchers see them as competitors for grazing cattle across millions of acres of arid range. And like the cougars and bears that have been showing up in residential areas, they're also competing with humans for habitat.

Now, a law signed by President Bush will allow the slaughter and export of horse meat from thousands of wild horses. Horse lovers are urging reversal of the measure, which was slipped into a recent federal appropriations bill by Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont.

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Wild horses graze in a Bureau of Land Management holding facility on Jan. 31 near Pawhuska, Okla. In December 2004, Congress repealed the ban on the wild horses' slaughter. STEVE GOOCH / AP

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