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Re: It was only a matter of time

--- Clair Ossian <clastic@verizon.net> schrieb am Fr, 18.3.2011:

> Von: Clair Ossian <clastic@verizon.net>
> Betreff: Re: It was only a matter of time
> An: augustoharo@gmail.com, frank@blissnet.com
> CC: dinosaur@usc.edu
> Datum: Freitag, 18. März, 2011 19:53 Uhr
> I am afraid I have to differ. 
> The response below is from someone who does
> not have to live with the mess and danger of prairie dog
> towns.
> I agree...don't eliminate them...but they need to be
> brought into balance.

Both correct ;-)

Prairie dog towns are a major problem to grazing mammals, particularly large 
herds thereof (horses foremost I suppose). Yet Marmotini (ground squirrels) in 
general are keystone species for nutrient turnover in grassland ecosystems.

If possible, rotating spatial exclusion (restricting the PDs on a piece of land 
that is kept inaccessible to farm animals, changing every few years, with the 
recently-vacated "towns" left to erode for a year or so) is probably best. At 
least when there is serious loss of livestock, the benefits may outweigh the 
cost (or actually lost profit) from keeping part of the land ungrazed.
IONO whether they have developed a method to real with this in Central Asia, 
where susliks are similarly challenging and also are a disease reservoir of 
major significance.