Killer Buyer: Adventures of
a New Mexico Horse Dealer
By Carolyn Bertin
Fear of cholesterol. Who
would have thought it would lead to wholesale slaughter of horses?
In the early 1990s diners in France and
Belgium ran the price of low-cholesterol horse meat sky high.
In New Mexico, horses began selling for 55 to 60 cents on the
hoof -- the same price beef cattle brought.
Horses about to be loaded into
a semi cattle truck headed for a Ft. Worth slaughter house. The
white stallion once ruled a herd on the Rainbow Plateau of the
Navajo Nation. Photo courtesy Carolyn Bertin.
"Killer Buyer" is a true story
set in the years of 1992 through the present. During this period
the free range horses of Navajo country and other regions of
hte American Southwest have had more to fear than the slaughter
house. These were also the worst drought years in living memory.
Pushed by the poverty of Navajo ranchers, pulled by the lure
of the European meat market, they left by the thousands in double
decker cattle trucks, never to return.
A Spanish Mustang mare, 3 years
old, from near Chinle on the Navajo Nation. Behind her is an
orphan filly a few weeks old that she met at a livestock action.
She adopted and mothered the filly, despite her precarious hold
on life. Photo courtesy Carolyn Bertin.
We invite you to read about the horses
you see in the photos above: the white stallion from the Rainbow
Plateau, the Chinle mare and orphan filly. We tell their stories,
and those of many more, in "Killer Buyer: True Adventures
of a New Mexico Horse Trader."