Friday, February 11, 2011

Black-tailed Prairie Dogs


While looking for Burrowing Owls in West Texas a couple months ago, we found these guys instead. Black-tailed Prairie Dogs. Or as I prefer to call them, P-dawgs! They are crazy skittish but two different ones let me get pretty close. I've been a prairie dog fan for a while. And yeah, they carry the plague. But it's no harder to treat than the flu, big deal. Camera Critters

21 comments:

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Carazay cute guys, way too cute. Is the disease airborne, I mean you aren't shaking their hands, so how does this pass on to humans then...never knew~

Mylene said...

They are cute :)

Thanks for visiting my entry for Skywatch :)

Steve Borichevsky said...

Funny you should mention Burrowing Owls. I was doing a breading bird census out in Yuma, Colorado. My buddy and I were on the side of a dirt road scanning the fields looking for Burrowing Owls in a farmer’s field. A pick-up truck came roaring up to investigate. We started chatting with the farmer. It seems that city people were coming in from Denver to dump Prairie Dogs in his field, and relieved that we were not carrying burlap sacks full of varmints, he became more relaxed and friendly.

We had a couple of Burrowing Owls in the spotting scope and showed him and his son the birds. He mentioned, “Oh, yeah, when we start seeing a lot of those, we know it is time to get after the Prairie Dogs.” This may sound like a broken cause-effect chain to non-naturalist. In fact, Burrowing Owls depend on abandoned Prairie Dog dens.

Misty Dawn said...

Great photographs! They are so cute! Here, we have groundhogs, and the farmers hate them.

So did you find any Burrowing Owls?

Siromade said...

Oh they're very cute. I love those captures.

ladyfi said...

Those little prairie dogs are delightful! Great shots.

John S. Mead said...

Great shots as usual, Jill. I worked one summer as a ranger near Gunnison ,CO and we had several prairie dog towns. There were great fun until the plague tests cam back positive and we had to implement population control measures. They are some of the most comical of critter...Thanks for making me smile with your images!

cat said...

You have really captured these adorable critters very well indeed.

biobabbler said...

I have a friend (grad school days) who had worked on black footed ferrets (they LOVE prairie dogs, munch, munch, munch) so she was constantly surrounded by the plague, so people working there were instructed to tell their doctors (if they fell ill with x, y, and z symptoms) that they might have the plague. They were also told the doctors wouldn't believe them and they'd have to emphasize VERY STRONGLY that it was a real possibility. =)

Out on the prairie said...

I found a small bag the other day and laughed, it was acollection of bones I picked up while sitting in a town waiting for a mother and young to arise. We are looking for Saw Whet Owls next weekend.

Gary said...

Great shots of an animal we don't have. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

Wonderful clear shots! Beautiful animals.

chubskulit said...

Simply gorgeous!


Camera Critters, have a great weekend.

Janie said...

They're awfully cute. You're probably safe from the plague as long as you don't make contact. Great photos!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

They are cute -- you're not gonna let one bite you anyway, so who cares about the plague !

Where one (set) of our kids live near Boulder there are a lot of prairie dogs. The Celestial Seasoning Tea company is there and they kind of got in trouble when they "got rid" of the some of them , which were making holes in their lovely lawns. Of course most customers of Celestial Seasoning (me included) care more for the prairie dogs than they do for grass. Which really doesn't belong in that part of Colorado anyway although it is nice to see the green.

twobarkingdogs said...

oh no! another little rat-like animal for my mutts to chase!

great photos!

Martha Z said...

You've been posting some pretty cool stuff while I was off in Yosemite. There is one good thing about the lower elevations this time of year, the birding is great. I agree, though, I'm anxious to get back into the mountains.

Marie said...

Neat photos -- I've always thought prarie dogs were fascinating. Had no idea about the plague but since they're skittish you're probably not going to get close enough to catch it anyway.

Visiting from the Camera Crittters meme :)

Arija said...

Yup, they really are crazy cute!
I guess you'd have to get up close and personal to catch the plague. Rats carry the plague too but there has to be the plague around for them to do so.

You do live an exciting life with all the wonderful wild life you get to admire.

Dominic Gendron said...

Love those dog! Great serie ;)

lina@happy family said...

Excellent shots! Totally cute :)