In 2010, the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust provided partial funding for a Prairie Dog Education and Public Information Center for the Second Chance Center for Animals in Flagstaff, AZ. The SCCA, a humane shelter in a Native American area serving not only dogs and cats, is located in habitat occupied by Gunnison’s Prairie dog.
During the construction of the Second Chance Center in 2003, great care was taken in locating the 20,000 square foot facility so that it would have minimal, if any, impact on an existing community of prairie dogs on the property. Since completion, additional steps have been taken to protect and enhance the prairie dog community.
The Prairie Dog Education and Public Information Center includes a minimally invasive walking path around the protected prairie dog colony. HSWLT provided money to create a matching fund for the SCC to use to generate funding for the project. The funds raised were used to provide the outlining and framing of the public observation trail.
In addition, the information packages and the weatherproof distribution facility for these packets were also funded. Additional materials such as benches, trees and other landscaping, and brick linings for the all weather trail will be provided through funding generated by the SCCA and other generous sources.
This small project significantly enhances the public education capacity at this unique privately supported shelter. It demonstrates the role of the prairie dog in a broader ecosystem management and will sustain a healthy and diverse colony of Gunnison’s prairie dogs.
In order to expand the scope of HSWLT’s influence and effectiveness for the benefit of wildlife, we frequently share funds, expertise and HSWLT’s humane philosophy with other organizations. All HSWLT shared efforts are rooted in our commitment to providing wildlife with safe places to live, forever, by assisting other organizations that share our concerns for wildlife and habitat.