Date of Award
Rebecca L. Powell, Ph.D.
Attitudes, Denver, Prairie Dogs, Urban Wildlife
The conservation of prairie dogs is highly contested due to the embedded view that they are pests. This research addressed the ecological and social viability of prairie dog colonies in Denver, Colorado. Remote sensing analysis was applied to identify potentially viable areas for urban prairie dog colonies. In order to assess the social viability of urban colonies, knowledge and attitudinal surveys were distributed to residents near existing colonies and residents near potential colonies. Statistical analysis of responses provided insight into relationships between proximity to colonies, ecological knowledge, attitudes towards prairie dogs, demographics, and the presence of educational literature. Results indicated that women are consistently more favorable towards prairie dogs; knowledge was strongly associated with favorability towards prairie dogs; and residents living near colonies were more favorable towards local prairie dogs than residents living near potential colonies. While additional education and outreach is necessary in order to improve residents' attitudes towards prairie dogs, this species has the potential to be viable in Denver.
Morse, Lauren K., "Scampering in the City: Examining the Ecological and Social Viability of Black-Tailed Prairie Dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) in Denver, Colorado" (2010). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 885.
Received from ProQuest
Lauren K. Morse
Geography, Wildlife Conservation, Wildlife Management