A closeup portrait.  ©John Hoogland 2007
 A mother carefully carries her baby in her mouth as she transfers her litter from one burrow into another.  ©John Hoogland 2006
 After a little over five weeks nursing underground, this litter makes their first emergence into the sunlight. ©John Hoogland 2006
 We mark emergent juveniles according to their mother's marking scheme. The following year these individuals will receive unique markings, but for now the only distinguishing mark is a cap of ink on the head for female babies. ©John Hoogland 2006
 In a trap.  ©MRR 2016
 It's a tough life for a prairie dog, and juveniles are especially vulnerable to predation. Here a long-tailed weasel approaches a nursery burrow. ©John Hoogland 2006
 Juvenile prairie dogs are very small. ©John Hoogland 2007
 An overhead photo while handling an especially cooperative juvenile. ©John Hoogland 2007
 When they first emerge, baby prairie dogs will tentatively remain near their burrow. ©John Hoogland 2007
 Huddled together.  ©John Hoogland 2007
 Babies are tiny but have full bellies after foraging.  ©John Hoogland 2007
 Two mothers stand on alert, surrounded by their offspring. ©John Hoogland 2011
 Mothers may transfer their offspring either by leading them or by carrying them.  ©John Hoogland 2006
 Relaxed and autogrooming.  ©John Hoogland 2007
 Sibling curiosity.  ©MRR 2017
 Testing what's edible.  ©MRR 2017
 Mother and son both autogrooming (self-grooming).  ©MRR 2017
 A funny face while playing.  ©MRR 2017
 Daughter seeks permission to suckle.  ©MRR 2017
 More common in certain species and less common in others, this Gunnison's prairie dog gives us a rare glimpse of aboveground nursing.  ©MRR 2017
 Rearing up to pounce.  ©MRR 2017
 Tussling in play provides as much learning as it does fun for juveniles.  ©MRR 2017
 A playful baby pounces on his mother.  ©MRR 2017
 Who knows what's going on underground; this baby woke up one morning with one eye closed, perhaps from a scratch. Later in the day the eye was open and healthy.  ©MRR 2017
 The Collar Belly marking on this juvenile makes him especially cute - in this researcher's opinion.  ©MRR 2017
 Siblings tumble into a burrow as they play.  ©MRR 2017
 Cops and robbers?  ©MRR 2017
 A relaxed sitting juvenile eating grass.  ©MRR 2017
 A post-plague juvenile at our Redondo Meadows colony.  ©MRR 2017
 A shy litter on their first day of emergence.  ©MRR 2017
 A baby runs behind his mother during a burrow transfer. This is called "leading."  ©MRR 2017
 Sibling touch time.  ©MRR 2017
 A baby drops a glob of dirt after a test bite.  ©MRR 2017
 Released back into his nursery burrow.  ©MRR 2017
 Sisters playing.  ©MRR 2017
 Playing looks nothing like the fights adults will engage it, but play does prepare prairie dogs for hostile interactions in adulthood.  ©MRR 2017
 A portrait on all fours.  ©MRR 2017
 Reaching for the high stuff.  ©MRR 2017
 Play copulating is a common form of play among juveniles.  ©MRR 2017
 Wrestling.  ©MRR 2017
 Sometimes three or more babies get in on the play.  ©MRR 2017
 Watching juveniles tumble into all sorts of positions can be very amusing.  ©MRR 2017
 A bear hug.  ©MRR 2017
 A pounce.  ©MRR 2017
 And a tumble.  ©MRR 2017
 Juveniles spend a lot of time exploring their surroundings, foraging, and playing, but also spend a considerable amount of their day just watching.  ©MRR 2017
 Siblings covered in dust as they play-fight over a bit of forage.  ©MRR 2017
 Not all juvenile prairie dogs will survive the summer or their first winter. Their carefree early months are brief.  ©MRR 2017
 Two weeks after emerging for the first time, juveniles are already markedly grown.  ©MRR 2017
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