Fort Collins Prairie Dog Colony Gets a New Home
The process to relocate a prairie dog colony living in a future brewery site began this week.
The Coloradoan reports that volunteers from the local Prairie Dog Relocation Group and members from a Boulder-based nonprofit began luring the animals from a field near Lemay Avenue and Buckingham Street into long, metal cages with oats and food pellets, covering them with sheets to help reduce stress. The displaced dogs are being moved to their new home at Cathy Fromme Prairie into a burrow system very closely replicated to their original home.
So far 93 animals have been captured, but trapping will continue into June. Until they can get situated, the burrow openings will be covered to protect the prairie dogs from predators.
The relocation project had to get a pass from property owners, city officials, and the Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife; while relocation is pricier than extermination, the concern for the animals goes far beyond them being "cute."
"The prairie dogs are not rebounding from plague incidents like they have in the past," Helen Taylor of the Prairie Dog Relocation Group tells the Coloradoan. "It makes sense that rather than kill them, move them to appropriate habitats where they can augment populations that are at risk."
If you'd like to make a contribution to this prairie dog relocation project, you can make a donation HERE. Funds are not only needed for the project, but for educational programs, as well.