Become a Prairie Dog Monthly Giving Pal!

Prairie Dog Pals would like to invite you to join our VERY exclusive group of members who donate to us on a monthly basis. These special members sustain us in a way that feeds the wild colonies of prairie Gunnison's paw printdogs that we maintain, cares for the prairie dogs that we relocate, and pays for our monthly bills. Without this special club, called the Prairie Dog Monthly Giving Pal Club, we could not survive.

Won’t you join this fabulous and generous club?

The best thing about it is that it’s easy! Just go to our donation page and select “monthly donation.” Once you’ve entered your information, your credit card will be charged every month for the amount that you choose.  It’s that simple!

As a thank you, if you pledge over $10 per month, we would like to send you a beautiful, hand-made prairie dog paw necklace made by Sharyn Davidson.  What are you waiting for?

Join today! Become a Prairie Dog Monthly Giving Pal!

Devils Tower adopts new prairie dog plan

A new Prairie Dog Management Plan for Devils Tower National Monument is now being put into place after a “Finding of No Significant Impact” report was recently finalized.

The plan will implement an adaptive strategy for the management of the black tailed prairie dog, according to a news release from the Devils Tower staff.

The plan aims to maintain a healthy prairie dog population, protect Monument resources and infrastructure, and ensure human health and safety.

Read more:  Devil’s Tower

Should animal cognition be considered by lawmakers for conservation policies?

Should animal cognition be considered by lawmakers for conservation policies? Many scientists believe it should.

The Humane Society Institute for Science & Policy is sponsoring a symposium next week in Washington, D.C., entitled “The Science of Animal Thinking and Emotion: Sentience as a Factor in Policy and Practice.”

Excerpt from the website:

Science is making stunning discoveries about animal cognition, awareness and emotion. How can we leverage this information for positive change in government and industry? This two-day conference brings together thought-leaders in the science and implications of animal sentience, and influential voices in the policy and corporate domains. As the bedrock of ethics, sentience deserves a more prominent place in the legislative and corporate landscape.

Read more at:  Cognition

Devils Tower adopts new prairie dog plan

A new Prairie Dog Management Plan for Devils Tower National Monument is now being put into place after a “Finding of No Significant Impact” report was recently finalized.

The plan will implement an adaptive strategy for the management of the black tailed prairie dog, according to a news release from the Devils Tower staff.

The plan aims to maintain a healthy prairie dog population, protect Monument resources and infrastructure, and ensure human health and safety.

Read more:  Devil’s Tower

Research Update: Preventing Predation of Endangered Black-footed Ferrets

Black-footed ferrets are one of the most endangered mammals in the world and their recovery efforts include ferret-and-fence_originala multi-agency captive breeding and reintroduction program. From 1991 to 2010, more than 3,000 captive-reared ferrets were reintroduced at 19 sites across North America. The captive-breeding program has successfully saved ferrets from extinction, but maintaining the captive population and producing kits for reintroduction is expensive. Furthermore, survival rates of captive-reared ferrets are lower than those of wild-born kits.

In an effort to help boost the survival of wild-born black-footed ferrets, scientists with the USDA-APHIS National Wildlife Research Center, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the University of Montana recently tested the effectiveness and feasibility of electric fencing to protect young ferrets from coyote predation at the UL Bend National Wildlife Refuge in Montana.

Researchers fenced portions of two prairie dog colonies within the wildlife refuge in order to exclude coyotes from areas inhabited by adult female ferrets and their litters. Results showed the electric fencing was an effective tool for reducing coyote activity in the study area and researchers observed a 22 percent higher survival rate for ferret kits living in protected areas versus unprotected areas. However, the fencing was not perfect and coyotes were found inside the fenced area on three occasions.

The cost for the fencing and its installation were approximately $7,200 per mile. Maintenance and monitoring costs for 2 months were an additional $1,025 per mile. Based on these numbers, researchers estimate that a 20–30 percent increase in the survival rate of wild-born kits would cost around $4,500 per ferret kit over 10 years. That cost drops to around $2,100 per ferret kit, if monitoring is done using volunteers and donated or borrowed vehicles. This study provides decisionmakers with valuable information for comparing the costs of breeding ferrets in captivity versus improving the survival of existing wild-born ferrets.

Read more:  Ferrets