Black-tailed prairie dogs are tough, social animals that live in and around burrows deep within the prairie soil. They grow to between 14 and 17 inches long and weigh about 2 to 3 pounds. They?re a burrowing rodent related to ground squirrels, and they live from three to five years. Black-tailed? prairie dogs live in complex communities, called “towns” or “colonies.” The colony is an underground tunnel system leading to various chambers.
Prairie dogs play a very important role in sustaining other prairie life. Biologists count more than 170 vertebrate species that are affected by the prairie dogs’ existence. They represent the primary diet for a number of species including: Black-Footed Ferrets (federally endangered), Swift foxes, Ferruginous Hawks, Burrowing Owls, Golden Eagles, Badgers, Prairie Falcons, Mountain Plovers, and many more. Prairie dog populations are directly linked to the success or failure of all of these other species.
Our prairie dogs are named Meeka and Mika, they are both female and very friendly. They used to be pets, but now they?re a part of the River Bend Family! We are currently working with TPWD on plans to build them a larger enclosure. Come and see them soon!