The Burros at China Lake

Posted by April Nockleby, ALDF's Online Content Manager on August 19, 2009

In March of 1981, the U.S. Navy secretly shot and killed 648 feral
burros at the Naval Weapons Center in China Lake, California. In the
organization’s first big case, ALDF, representing the Animal Protection
Institute and the Fund for Animals, argued that the Navy had violated
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).The Navy subsequently
released a draft environmental impact statement under NEPA, in which it
advocated the shooting of all 2000-5000 burros in the China Lake area.

After months of negotiation, a settlement was reached on October 20,
1981, and the Navy agreed to allow the Fund for Animals to remove the
burros (with the Navy paying them $50 per burro removed) and the Animal
Protection Institute to adopt them out to safe new homes. There was no
further shooting of burros.

We take a look back at this landmark case as we celebrate ALDF’s 30th anniversary. Help us celebrate 30 years of winning the case against cruelty by signing ALDF’s Animal Bill of Rights! Tell Congress that all animals deserve protection against exploitation and abuse by humans.

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