Changes in black-tailed prairie dog towns on the Texas Panhandle determined by a geographic information system
Ernst, Andrea E.
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This study provided current, technologically advanced data on present populations and distributions of black-tailed prairie dog towns on the Texas High Plains.Additionally, these data provided up-to-date acreage estimates to further enhance conservation assessment and strategy plans recently being developed and coordinated by state and federal wildlife agencies. One main objective of this study was to determine if black-tailed prairie dog towns on the Texas High Plains, greater than 40 hectares (100 acres), were of the same size and spatial distribution in 1991 as they were in 1998. This was accomplished by (I) creating a GIS coverage of locations and size of prairie dog towns surveyed in 1991 and (2) determining the current (1998) black-tailed prairie dog population. Both the historical and current population estimates were obtained by utilizing aerial photography followed by final incorporation into the GIS. Once the prairie dog town GIS coverages were produced, differences of acreage were compared between years.