A horse will at least render energy back to the environment both during its life and once it is dead, while your bike will only pollute it more. Look at the flabberlip making such pronouncements. What a joke. At least the eunuch has pseudoscience on his side. All you have is unsupported opinion at this juncture. Over populated herds can also *strip* grasslands through over grazing. Now I seem to remember from my elementary geography lessons, that reduced fauna through over grazing can result in excessive wind erosion, removing topsoil and reducing once fertile areas to virtual desert. The horse will stomp around with four hooves.
The weight is equally distributed on the hooves, which exert minimum compaction forces on the soil. On the other hand, your bike is taken on the so-called trails. Your body exerts a much greater force on the tires, which in turn compact the soil. This is not a valid comparison, unless you assume that the horse and a human(+bike) have the same weight, which is of course not true. Horses are a lot heaier. If you were to visit woodland near to myself in SE England, you will see bridleways that are constantly being churned up by horses, that are virtually impossible to navigate by persons on foot or mountain bike.
You will see hoof prints, not bike prints in the faunaless, hardened, rutted ground. Even other birds will benefit from some of the parasitic pests commonly seen on wild mustangs as well as domestic horses (i.e. ticks, fleas, and flies). Can anyone tell me how wild animals will benefit from a bike? Less pollution (I gave up my car for a bike). And a narrow trail through a piece of woodland which plays host to bikers who exhaust nothing but CO2, I’m sure is a lot less detrimental than a road carrying cars which as we know, exhaust evil stuff. I’d rather see a new cycle path than a new road. I think it is wrong and idiotic of anyone to assume that an animal does harm to the environment. Again, I refer you to many documented cases of large herds stripping vast areas of vegitation