7 WEEKS TO PRAIRIE DOGS! We're headed back to the Valles Caldera National Preserve (VCNP), New Mexico, in March to return to our research on the Gunnison's prairie dog (GPD). John came to the VCNP to resume studies on GPDs in 2013. With 11 years of GPD research under his belt (including 6 at the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, from '89-'95), the GPDs still manage to surprise John every season.
This year, three intrepid Prairie Dog Squad members will be joining John in his annual effort to collect data on mating behaviors, kinship, female dispersal, infanticide, alarm calling, and more. The research season begins as the prairie dogs are emerging from winter hibernation in March, and ends after all of the new offspring have emerged from their nursery burrows in June.