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House bill would change size of Corolla wild horse herd

Posted March 18, 2010
Updated March 19, 2010

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— A federal bill to protect Corolla wild horses was introduced Thursday in the House of Representatives.

The Corolla Wild Horse Protection Act, introduced by U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., would require the U. S. Department of the Interior, the state of North Carolina, the County of Currituck and the Corolla Wild Horse Fund to craft a new herd management plan that would allow for a herd of no fewer than 100 horses.

The current plan calls for a maximum herd size of 60. The Corolla Wild Horse Fund has said that if the wild herd were managed at that level, the herd would likely have a genetic collapse due to low genetic diversity.

Jones sponsored similar legislation that was enacted into law in 1998 to protect the wild horses roaming 3,000 acres of Cape Lookout National Seashore, Shackleford Banks, in Carteret County. That herd is managed at no fewer than 110 with a target number of 120 to 130.

“These beautiful horses are an essential piece of eastern North Carolina’s heritage,” Jones said in a statement Thursday. “This bill will help protect the viability of the Corolla herd so people can enjoy them for years to come.”

The wild horses of Corolla, also known as bankers, have survived in the Outer Banks for nearly 500 years.

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  • cbarnett Mar 19, 2010

    Glad to see something good come out of Washington for a change. Ha Ha!! Change!! Get it!!

  • dwarner3 Mar 19, 2010

    Actually the yahoos [ clowns ] drive their 4 wheel drives through the fences and anywhere else basically because they could care less who or what is in the way. I can't think of any compelling reason to allow any driving any the beaches

  • smarterthanyou2 Mar 19, 2010

    So basically, the fencing keeps them from wondering into yards and public streets?

  • The original American Mar 19, 2010

    The horses are a non-native species and should have been removed many years ago.

  • ratherbnnc Mar 19, 2010

    ", instead we have a fence to keep the horses up in 4WD territory."

    Is this true? I drove around in the dunes last year and had several horses come within 15 ft of my stopped Jeep. No fences anywhere that I noticed.
    smarterthanyou2

    In a certain part they are fenced in, but its a large area. The fencing is more towards Corolla itself and not north towards Carova,Swan Beach or the beach area.

  • smarterthanyou2 Mar 19, 2010

    ", instead we have a fence to keep the horses up in 4WD territory."

    Is this true? I drove around in the dunes last year and had several horses come within 15 ft of my stopped Jeep. No fences anywhere that I noticed.

  • Eduardo1 Mar 19, 2010

    yea. lets blame it all on the "rich-yankees"
    I don't know it, but someone has to tell oceanchild71 that the war between the states has been over a few years

  • oceanchild71 Mar 18, 2010

    Thank you, Rep. Jones for allowing science to guide a policy rather than some random number created by someone who perceives an easy target in the horses. They are such an important part of the local history.

    Although seeing the horses now is such a change from when I was a kid. Now, all the rich yankees who thought the horses were oh-so-quaint when they vacationed down here now think the horses are a nuisance because of the droppings. Also, people don't want to drive slow in case the horses are in the road. So, instead we have a fence to keep the horses up in 4WD territory. It saddens me to think my children can't have the same memories of the horses I had (and I grew up there). Nonetheless, I hope they get the assistance and protection they need.