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Prairie Dogs: A Threatened Species or Public Health Nuisance?

By Kenneth Barbalace
[Wednesday, March 21, 2007]
In the Midwest of the United States the matter of whether prairie dogs are a threatened species or an over populated public health nuisance that causes severe economic damage has been raging for decades.

This article is the first in a series of articles that we will publish on EnvironmentalChemistry.com on the subject of Prairie dogs over the coming month or so. On a personal note, if you have never seen a prairie dog in person you are truly missing something, they are adorable creatures and fun to watch in their natural habitat (but please remember, they are wild animals, and don't make appropriate pets).

Read entire article: Prairie Dogs: A Threatened Species or Public Health Nuisance?


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KermyFrag said...

The argument that prairie dogs are hazardous to cattle is not justified. Once upon a time millions of prairie dogs coexisted with millions of bison. Somehow the bison managed to flourish on the prairie without breaking legs and starving to death. Crazy right?

Instead of figuring out how to control the prairie dog population, why don't we try to figure out how to control the human population and our tendency to wipe out certain species because they happen to be occupying a piece of land that we'd like to build another Wal-Mart on.

Anonymous said...

I was stationed at Vandenberg AFB in California in the 1970s, and I can testify that there were many thousands of wild prairie dogs living there, as well as ferrets, badgers, and turkeys. The prairie dogs were preyed upon by hawks and buzzards, and, I assume, the ferrets and badgers.

They were amusing little creatures, and I was very glad to see them doing so well in the open lands of Vandenberg AFB. They could also be easily seen in areas outside but near the base. I have not been back there in decades, but I would be very surprised if all of the animals that I described are not still there.

Over the years, I often wondered why no one ever talks about all of the many prairie dogs living in California.

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