Please view the video capturing prairie dogs below from one of our projects to learn more about capture (for rescue & relocation) with the soap and water method.
FOR YOUR SAFETY AND THE SAFETY OF WILD PRAIRIE DOGS, DO NOT ATTEMPT CAPTURING YOURSELF!
To not jeopardize wild prairie dogs, it is essential to know that you need proper licensing and permitting from varying agencies depending on your state to perform relocation/translocation efforts. Additionally, you need landowner permission in writing. Otherwise, you're trespassing onto private property, and the result can lead to fines, arrest, and potentially putting the captured prairie dogs at risk for euthanasia. Please know the law and do your research or contact a professional or get guidance through contacting this site by email. State laws vary widely. Often numerous agencies are involved in the oversight of how these activities are performed. Just because one agency may give you approval doesn't mean you can assume all will. You have to do thorough research and documentation in advance before going about this type of work.
If you are interested in participating as a volunteer, please contact us. We can put you in touch with organizations with the experience to make capture and relocation efforts a safe, fun, lawful, and educational experience while keeping the welfare and safety of wild prairie dogs a top priority.
*Note that you risk being bit or seriously injured by a number of things such as angry adult wild prairie dogs capable of removing a finger or two, black widow spiders, other spiders, insects, rattlesnakes, other snakes, badgers, and more if you attempt to try this on your own without proper guidance and licensing/permitting.
This video can give you a better understanding of what it involves to capture, observe, quarantine, and relocate prairie dogs from properties where they are unwanted and would otherwise be destroyed.
After capture, each prairie dog is treated for fleas and then put under quarantine and observation for approximately two weeks before being released to be forever free.
During quarantine, their health and nutrition are monitored, and intervention is taken when necessary to restore them to health before turning out into a new location. This quarantine and observation period is a critical element to a successful release onto a new site. Those who have benefited from quarantine and the observation period often fare far better than those released to a new site the same day they are captured. Each prairie dog's health and nutrition have been restored as much as possible. Still, then they are evaluated and released utilizing a slow and deliberate process that takes each new site into account. Consideration is taken about how successful coteries are established in the wild with their release. Assuming the suitable release site is appropriately prepared for their arrival, the initial release process often starts with a small group of females that get right to work with new tunnel systems and burrow construction. Next, if the timing of the release necessitated that any pups or young prairie dogs required relocation, a small group of babies is released with the females and given time to reunite and integrate. Finally, after a short time, any remaining young, any remaining rehabbed females, and all the male prairie dogs are brought to join the rest of the group which has been developed by the initial females and is occupied, developed, and ready to accept newcomers. Many times funding does not exist to allow for this quarantine and observation period. Hence, those released' survival rates may not be as high as those that have had that luxury of full quarantine and observation coupled with knowledgeable management and monitoring of the site.
We are grateful for ALL rescuers and relocation organizations that provide their knowledge and expertise to safely and humanely give prairie dogs a new lease on life.
Donations are greatly needed to Prairie Dog Sid's Charity to help support those involved in prairie dog relocation efforts along with the efforts of:
PMS Recycled Vermin
Daryl Hogue & Lynda Watson
Over 30 years experience in wild-to-wild relocation services
Need translocation/relocation assistance?
You can also reach out to us for information about zoo enclosure recommendations, pups, proper captive care, nutrition, and owner education on this website, along with what you can do to help support conservation efforts in the wild.
While any donation you make is incredibly appreciated, you can best serve the prairie dogs by sending monetary donations where portions of your contributions are not wasted by shipping and freight costs. By choosing to contribute to Prairie Dog Sid's Charity (see below) for the benefit of Daryl Hogue and Lynda Watson of PMS Recycled Vermin you can trust that 100% of all monies are spent toward what is listed here. You can pride yourself in knowing that you made a difference in helping save those that have no voice and would otherwise be destroyed without your help.
These are approximate day-to-day operating expenses for ongoing needs:
( all items below are conservative approximations )
Suitable land – translocation/relocation organizations DESPERATELY need donations of suitable land or land that can be readily sold in order to obtain an appropriate location where unwanted wild prairie dogs can be safely relocated for permanent residence. Not all land is inhabitable for wild prairie dogs. Some reasons not all land is suitable for relocation include having too many competing invasive species decreasing resource access potential, high predator risk, no access or growth of native prairie grasses safe for the species, or sight obstruction that can put them at risk as prey. Please contact us or one of the experienced relocation organizations listed on this site for more information and assistance in determining whether a proposed land site is suitable for long-term sustainability.
Funding for Veterinarian Costs – Costs for veterinary care often run very high due to the volume of prairie dogs being moved. Depending on your preference, we can assist you with donating directly to an account at the appropriate veterinarian's office to help with ongoing vet care and medication costs that routinely arise if you choose not to contribute to a relocation organization directly.
Money - for travel costs, gas, soap, and water to keep hydrated in hot, dry, and dusty conditions = $150 - $300 per trip due to current gas prices and the cost of cheap motel stays where applicable when working out of town.
Bedding - sawdust, wild prairie dogs urine is very concentrated because they do not drink water in the wild but obtain it via the dew on grasses and through their diet, so they need to have their cages cleaned every day, unlike pet prairie dogs where different litter is recommended = $200 per month.
Feed & Supplies - can include but are not limited to such basic needs as sweet potatoes, greens, fresh grasses, fresh timothy hay, and other grass hays, and water bottles (wild prairie dogs destroy these frequently during their temporary stays) = $300 per month
Funds to help with monthly water, heating, air conditioning, ventilation, and specialized lighting = $300 per month. Prairie dogs coming in from a relocation effort are housed in a large outbuilding that facilitates and attends to their special needs.
Funds to assist with maintenance of outbuilding facilities, equipment, insurance, and construction costs associated with outbuildings, caging, and more- costs vary
Non-Routine Items Needed:
(while these entities have most of the major equipment needed for prairie dog relocation, they could both benefit from donations of the following)
A Used 3/4 2 Wheel Drive Pick Up Truck.
Old mobile trailer - to serve as an additional portable outbuilding for any emergency overflow of wild-caught prairie dogs. It must have a good roof and structure, but the inside condition isn't a concern.
You can send charitable non-profit donations to Prairie Dog Sid's Charity to help with numerous annual relocation/translocation project costs, rescue, and more to help prairie dogs in need by visiting the following page and clicking on the "Donate" button:
If you have trouble donating, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A cause to be celebrated, prairie restoration at Caprock Canyons State Park!
Other state and national parks are initiating interest to learn, partner, and follow to help support and restore our vanishing prairie ecosystem before it is too late. Prairie dogs as a keystone species are paramount to this restoration effort for future generations to enjoy prairie habitat benefits.
Many of you may have already read about the prairie dog release near Honey Flat at the beautiful Caprock Canyons State Park located in Quitaque, Texas. This release was not financed using taxpayer's money through Texas Parks and Wildlife's annual budget but was funded entirely through prairie dog-related fundraising contributions and out of the pocket of the relocators.
Caprock Canyons is a 15,000-acre state park located in the Texas Panhandle. In part, the park's mission is found in the Caprock Prairie Restoration Project, where the goal is to restore the great majority of the area back to the way the Great Plains existed before European settlement, but we need your help. We invite all those that are passionate about prairie dogs in the wild along with the numerous other species that make up our rapidly vanishing prairie ecosystem to become a partner today in this mission so that you too can be part of making this goal a reality.
Today, the park is home to the Texas State wild bison herd, where they hope to see it grow and flourish similarly to near historic numbers for the area. The park is also working toward the reintroduction of pronghorn. Eventually, they want to see the populations of prairie dogs, bison, and pronghorn thrive for all to enjoy for many generations to come.
Additional land within the park has been designated to prairie dogs for a future release that has tremendous potential. Sadly, mesquite, an invasive species, has overrun much of this land, and it requires clearing, which isn't free and requires funding to complete. There is a wealth of native prairie grasses which sprouted underneath the mesquite from my site observation in May. The mesquite must be removed for the underlying grass growth to be successful enough to sustain prairie dogs and their population's expansion into the future. We are in the process of CLEARING BY HAND what we can without support, but this is painstakingly slow without the proper equipment needed to do this more quickly and efficiently.
Our current target is to clear the one designated site of thirty acres with additional acreage to follow once those released are established and stable.
This protected land is an incredible gift to those prairie dogs that require relocation from areas where they are unwanted and are due to be destroyed.
Again, prairie dogs urgently need your help and ongoing support. Caprock Canyons State Park has a partnership with Caprock Partners Foundation.
This tax-deductable organization assists in fundraising efforts to help the park financially make this big project a reality. Caprock Partners Foundation is a small group of people trying to carry out a big job. For those that want to be part of this park's ongoing mission, consider an annual membership to the Foundation for $25. There is a way to designate your donations to prairie dogs when donating.
Some may be interested in knowing that any contributions made to Caprock Partners Foundation can be designated strictly toward the site development for future prairie dog releases and site work. Undesignated funds will be used generally toward the goal stated for all three species, emphasizing overall park development, pronghorn, and bison. You can designate any contribution as you see fit.
If you have any questions about this project's prairie dog aspect, please don't hesitate to contact Gena Seaberg at email@example.com or 425.870.1729.
About Caprock Canyons State Park & Trailway:
Like and check out Caprock Canyons State Park on Facebook:
Caprock Partners Foundation:
Some other newsworthy relocation projects…
San Angelo, Texas – Mary E. Lee Park
Wichita Falls, Texas - Kiwanis Park
Midland, Texas – City of Midland
Burleson, Texas – Chesapeake Natural Gas