CREATED Sep. 25, 2012
SONOITA, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - A number of prairie dogs got a new accessory this week that will help wildlife specialists better understand the animal's movements and colonization practices.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department fitted GPS radio collars on 30 black-tailed prairie dogs and released them at Las Cienegas National Conservation Area Monday, according to Mark Hart with the AZ Game and Fish Department.
The GPS collars will allow Game and Fish to track movement of the animals among their colonies.
More than 120 prairie dogs were trapped and checked for parasites. They were also weighed, measured and tagged before being returned to their colony or used to create a new colony at Las Cienegas.
Hart tells KGUN9 that Game and Fish has been reintroducing prairie dogs to Las Ciegenas since 2008 with source populations outside Arizona. The relative good health of the now 180 prairie dogs at Las Cienegas enabled the first-time creation of a new colony with a source population in Arizona.