I have talked about the prairie and I have talked about my dog. But I haven’t talked about prairie dogs.
Prairie dogs are burrowing rodents that inhabit various fields in the area. Prairie dogs are, of course, not dogs. They are more closely related to ground squirrels.
The prairie dogs were not happy that I had Claira along for this walk. They would start chirping when she was about 30 feet away and would disappear into their burrows when she was within 20 feet. This close up was acquired through patience and a very well behaved dog. I could tell Claira wanted to go play with them and see what all the ruckus was about.
Prairie dogs are considered a nuisance by land owners. Getting a colony cleared out by shooting them is considered poor form these days. To get rid of them today they generally use soap suds and a high powered vacuum (no kidding). Usually they relocate the colony somewhere else or sometimes sell them to people in Japan as pets (true story).
Prairie dog colonies are sometimes wiped out by an infection of the bubonic plague (aka The Black Death). Yeah, the plague that wiped out one third of the population of Europe. They don’t look so cute at this point, do they?
I posed a challenge in the Dusted Bear post. Find the guy in the picture. In case you couldn’t find him, here he is. This is in the lower left of the picture. This is a screen shot of the image at 1:1 magnification (1 picture pixel is one screen pixel).