Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: New Mexico
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

New Mexico Project

An estimate of abundance and an assessment of the efficacy of sterilization techniques for the control of wild burro populations

February 2015 - March 2018


Participating Agencies

  • Department of Defense, Fort Irwin
Feral burros on Fort Irwin, California

Feral burro populations have increased in numbers and are impacting fragile desert plant communities, reducing forage availability for domestic livestock and wildlife as well as seeking forage and water near human habitations, which brings them into conflict with humans. Fort Irwin, California has a relatively large population of burros (~1,000) that enter into the cantonment area, resulting in human-wildlife conflicts. We propose to estimate the size of the burro population, examine patterns of space use and employ non-lethal methods of immunocontraception or sterilization to reduce recruitment into the existing population in an attempt to reduce population size.

Technical Publications Publication Date
Reddell, C.D., T.K. Karish, G.W. Roemer, and J.W. Cain III. 2016. Investigations into the control of coyote and feral burro populations on the National Training Center Fort Irwin, California. Annual Progress Report to U.S. Army Construction and Engineering Research Laboratory and Fort Irwin National Training Center. July 2016
Presentations Presentation Date
Karish, T., G.W. Roemer, and J.W. Cain III. 2017. Resource selection and movements of feral burros on the Fort Irwin National Training Center. 24th Annual Conference of the Wildlife Society, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA. (POSTER) September 2017
Theses and Dissertations Publication Date
Karish, T. 2020. Habitat selection by feral burros in the Mojave Desert. M.S. Thesis, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces. 86 pp July 2020