/ Modified jan 25, 2016 5:03 a.m.

State Wants to Reduce Wild Burro Herds Numbering 4,800

Federal agency says it must conduct environmental analysis before taking action.

The Arizona Game and Fish Commission this week called on the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to address the overpopulation of wild burros in the state.

A resolution the Commission approved last week said there are more than 4,800 burros in Arizona, three times the state-federal burro limit established in a federal law passed in 1971.

BLM spokesman Jayson Barangan said the bureau needs to conduct an environmental analysis before taking any action.

Since the 1971 law was passed, federal agencies removing burros from public lands have put the animals up for adoption by individuals. In the last decade, adoption demand has declined, officials reported.

Burros in the state, including along the Colorado River and in and around the Grand Canyon, are descendants of animals brought in by miners over the centuries. Too many burros lead to overgrazing, harming grasslands, competition with cattle and leading to erosion.

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