Prairie Dogs

This keystone species of the prairies has seen its numbers reduced by 95%.

Defenders in Action: Defenders Seeks to Curb Wildlife Poisoning

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Prairie Dogs, © Krista Schlyer / WayfarerPhotography.com

Wildlife Coexistence Partnership supports more than 100 projects nationwide in 2011

Wildlife Coexistence Partnership supports more than 100 projects nationwide in 2011
Defenders of Wildlife helps ranchers, communities coexist with wildlife in nine states and Mexico

Summary:

Defenders in Action: Working with Private Landowners

Prairie dogs are often not tolerated by private landowners, many of whom have eradicated them from their properties. Fortunately, there are others who understand the critical role this keystone species plays in maintaining a healthy grassland environment. Defenders of Wildlife is making sure that conservation-minded landowners are able to help protect prairie dogs on their own land.

The Problem

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Species at Risk

Defenders in Action: Stopping Prairie Dog Poisoning on National Grasslands

Our nation’s 17 Great Plains national grasslands are managed by the U.S. Forest Service. These 3.5 million acres of public land are prime habitat for prairie dogs and other wildlife. As the main public lands in a region dominated by private land, the national grasslands are critical for maintaining healthy wildlife populations.

The Problem

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Species at Risk

Wild Matters: Relocation Redux and More

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by Heidi Ridgley and James Navarro

Relocation Redux

Prairie Dog Relocation, Photo: Lacy Gray / Defenders of Wildlife

Joel Sartore: Protect Nebraska’s Prairie Dogs

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Defenders board member and award-winning National Geographic photographer Joel Sartore speaks out against prairie dog poisoning in his home state of Nebraska.

Background and Recovery

Then and Now

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Species at Risk

Resources

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How You Can Help

Your support will help us fight to protect prairie dogs and other threatened and endangered wildlife.

Adopt a Prairie Dogs

A symbolic adoption helps save real animals in the wild.

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Prairie Dogs 101

Prairie dogs are burrowing rodents that live in large colonies in the grasslands of central and western North America. The five species of prairie dogs (black-tailed, white-tailed, Gunnison’s, Mexican and Utah) were once likely more than one billion strong, and their colonies covered roughly 100 million acres. Since the late 1800s, their numbers have been reduced by at least 95 percent, and they are now found in comparatively small and fragmented colonies that total roughly 2-3 million acres.

Why They’re Important

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