Nov 17, 2010 3:12 PM by Greg Boyce

Prairie dog conference scheduled in Poncha Springs

Protecting prairie dogs will be the topic of a meeting in Poncha Springs on December 2 at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds.

"The Division of Wildlife has been inventorying Gunnison's prairie dog colonies and establishing local management plans for more than a year now," said DOW biologist Ed Schmal. "This meeting is an opportunity for interested parties to get an update and provide input."

There are three kinds of prairie dogs in Colorado: black-tailed, white-tailed and Gunnison's. Black-tailed prairie dogs are the most common and are found mainly east of the foothills. Gunnison's and white-tailed prairie dogs are less numerous and found in mountain valleys and parks in western and central Colorado.

Schmal said the meeting is not a forum for people to simply give their opinions about prairie dogs. The half-day session is designed to map out conservation efforts and actions.

While considered a nuisance by many, they do provide an important food source for predators such as hawks, badgers, coyotes, and foxes.

Private landowners, conservationists, concerned citizens, and representatives of local, federal, and state agencies are invited to attend. The Chaffee County Fairgrounds are located at 10165 County Rd. 120.  The meeting runs from 9:30 a.m. to noon.




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