Magazine
Standing up for the underdog

August 16, 1999

After a century of poisoning and shooting the black-tailed prairie dog at will, ranchers are up in arms over the push by conservationists to have the animal listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

Feature

Standing up for the underdog
After a century of poisoning and shooting the black-tailed prairie dog at will, ranchers are up in arms over the push by conservationists to have the animal listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

Sidebar

Facts about prairie dogs
Facts about prairie dogs
Prairie dogs found in pet stores and pounds
Connecticut resident Rebecca Fischer organized Prairie Dog Rescue to deal with the many prairie dogs adopted as pets on the East Coast and later unwanted by their owners.
Craig Knowles, scientist caught in the middle
Wildlife biologist Craig Knowles - the point man for prairie dog conservation in Montana - doesn't think the animal needs to be listed as threatened.
Shooting: It's not a hunt per se
Prairie dog shooting is a profitable sport that many conservationists would like to see banned, or at least controlled, on public lands.
One grassland grows prairie dogs
On Wyoming's Thunder Basin National Grassland, prairie dogs thrive along with a host of other wildlife.
Do prairie dogs steal grass?
For a century, ranchers have believed that prairie dogs compete with cattle for grass - a notion contemporary biologists are debunking.

Essays

An ugly message marches down an Idaho street
Watching as members of the Aryan Nations parade down a Coeur d'Alene street, the writer worries that, in northern Idaho, the distance between Nazi and native is not a comfortable one.

Book Reviews

America's Redrock Wilderness
The Utah Wilderness Coalition has reinventoried BLM lands for a proposed wilderness bill that would protect 9.1 million acres, and the beautiful paperbound book "America's Redrock Wilderness" showcases some of those lands.
Day of 6 billion
The 6 billionth human may have already been born, and the U.N. recommends two Web sites that deal with overpopulation, one from the National Wildlife Federation and the other from the Audubon Society.
Native Americans gather to defend homelands
More than 1,000 Native Americans met at Mount Taylor in New Mexico to celebrate the 10th birthday of the Indigenous Environmental Network.
Waterton-Glacier International Writers Workshop
The 1999 Waterton-Glacier International Writers Workshop takes place Sept. 16-18 in Alberta, Canada.
All That Glitters
A beautifully illustrated book about Native American micaceous pots is reviewed.
Summit to Envision Colorado's Future
A summit is planned for Sept. 24 and 25 at the American Mountaineering Center in Golden, Colo.
Making the land pay
A new report, "Incentives for Conserving Open Lands in Greater Yellowstone," offers suggestions for farmers and ranchers to make land pay without selling out to developers.
Dams must go
The Save Our Wild Salmon Coalition has produced a new report, "Returning Salmon by Restoring Rivers: The Case for Partially Removing Four Dams on the Lower Snake River."
The river rules a hidden canyon
"The Hidden Canyon: A River Journey" pairs a diary by Ed Abbey with photos by John Blaustein to document a river journey down the Grand Canyon.
Beaver and Common Sense Conflict Solutions
A beaver conference will be held Sept. 7-9 in Estes Park, Colo., sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States, Wildlife 2000 and Rocky Mountain National Park.
Effective Forest Road Management Workshop
A workshop for foresters and woodlot owners is offered at Oregon State University's College of Forestry, Sept. 20-21.
Water Issues and Partnerships for Rural Arizona
The Arizona Hydrological Society will hold a symposium Sept. 8-11 in the White Mountains.
A Guide to Land Exchanges in the Northern Rockies
American Wildlands has produced a brochure to explain what exchanges are in the works.
Building on Leopold's Legacy: Conservation for a New Century
The 50th anniversary of "A Sand County Almanac: by Leopold will be held Oct. 4-7 in Madison, Wis.

Perspective

Never underestimate a working majority
The working majority in Congress enforces or ignores Rule 16 as it pleases - the rule that prevents policy-making amendments being added to appropriations bills.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Endangered plane in UT; Mysterious captions and news items; rotting apples in George, Wash.; hog manure in Wheatland, Wyo.; bombs on Gold Dust Peak in Colo.; signs of the times; AZ gov. vs. owls; Margaret Mead and Nazis; Air Force reassigns Ryan Berry.

Dear Friends

Dear Friends
HCN's new Web page; summer visitors; a no-no on names; books and more books; George Ochenski correction; MANAS.

News

An island becomes a protest ground
On La Framboise Island in Pierre, S.D., Sioux Indian activists have been protesting since March against the Army Corps of Engineers' plan to return most of Missouri River bottomland it once managed to the state, rather than giving all back to 7 tribes.
The Wayward West
Burlington Northern to pay for toxic dumping; vandalism of Escalante enviro homes; Vail ski resort road crosses protected wetlands; Telluride ski area expansion; strontium 90 found by chinook spawning area at Hanford; Sen. Orrin Hatch runs for president.
Judge halts nine timber sales
Federal Judge William Dwyer has blocked nine major timber sales, saying that the Forest Service and the BLM have failed to protect rare animal and plant species in old-growth forest, as required under the Northwest Forest Plan.
Reviving a refuge
California's Tule Lake National Wildlife Refuge has been managed to benefit agriculture, not wildlife, critics say, but if water is given to the wetlands before it goes to irrigation, that could change.
Taylor Ranch sells
The remaining 54,000 acres of Colorado's Taylor Ranch - called La Sierra by the Hispanic locals - have been sold to Western Properties Investors, and no one is sure what the fate of the land will be.
High Country News Classifieds
  • CANYONLANDS FIELD INSTITUTE
    Colorado Plateau Natural & Human History Field Seminars. Lodge, river, hiking options. Small groups, guest experts.
  • NATURE EDUCATION DIRECTOR
    Our mission is to inspire a life-long connection to nature and community through creative exploration of the outdoors. We are seeking an educational leader who...
  • DEVELOPMENT AND MARKETING DIRECTOR
    The Development and Marketing Director is a senior position responsible for the execution of all development and marketing strategies to raise funds and increase public...
  • DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR
    Coordinates all Wyoming Wildlife Federation philanthropic activities. Tasks include identification, recruitment, and retention of donors, organizing fundraising events, and assisting with grant writing.
  • REALTOR NEEDS A REMOTE ASSISTANT
    This is a business assistant position, The working hours are flexible and you can chose to work from anywhere of your choice, the pay is...
  • CORPORATE & GRANTS PARTNER MANAGER
    Forever Our Rivers Foundation Corporate Partnerships Manager February 2020 www.ForeverOurRivers.org Forever Our Rivers Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, was formed in late 2016 with the mission...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Central Oregon LandWatch is seeking an Executive Director to advance our mission and oversee the development of the organization. Job Description: The Executive Director oversees...
  • WESTERN NATIVE SEED
    Specializing in native seeds and seed mixes for western states.
  • MEDIA DIRECTOR
    Love working with the media? Shine a spotlight on passionate, bold activists fighting for wild lands, endangered species, wild rivers and protecting the climate.
  • STAFF ATTORNEY - NEVADA
    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking an attorney to expand our litigation portfolio in Nevada. Come join our hard-hitting team as we fight for...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Montana Wildlife Federation seeks an energetic leader to advance our mission, sustain our operations, and grow our grassroots power. For a full position description,...
  • HISTORIC COMMERCIAL OPPORTUNITY IN DOWNTOWN NOGALES
    Nogales. 3 active lower spaces and upper floor with lots of potential. 520-245-9000 [email protected]
  • CHUCK BURR'S CULTUREQUAKE.COM BLOG
    Change will happen when we see a new way of living. Thinking to save the world.
  • COMING TO TUCSON?
    Popular vacation house, furnished, 2 bed/1 bath, yard, dog-friendly. Lee at [email protected] or 520-791-9246.
  • DIRECTOR, TEXAS WATER PROGRAMS
    The National Wildlife Federation seeks a Director to lead our water-related policy and program work in Texas, with a primary focus on NWF's signature Texas...
  • SPLIT CREEK RANCH
    Spectacular country home on 48 acres with Wallowa River running through it! 541-398-1148 www.RubyPeakRealty.com
  • OJO CALIENTE COMMERCIAL VENTURE
    Outstanding location near the world famous Ojo Caliente Mineral Spring Resort. Classic adobe Mercantile complete w/living quarters, separate 6 unit B&B, metal building and spacious...
  • NEW MEXICO GILA NATIONAL FOREST HORSE RANCH
    43 acres in the Gila National Forest. Horse facility, custom home. Year-round outdoor living. REDUCED to $999,000, 575-536-3109.
  • EVERLAND MOUNTAIN RETREAT
    Everland Mountain Retreat includes 318 mountaintop acres with a 3,200 square foot lodge and two smaller homes. Endless vistas of the Appalachian mountains, open skies,...
  • COPPER CANYON MEXICO CAMPING & BACKPACKING
    Camping, hiking, backpacking, R2R2R, Tarahumara Easter, Mushroom Festival, www.coppercanyontrails.org.