Black-Footed Ferret (Mustela nigripes) Restoration in Badlands National Park 1994-1995
During spring 1994, three black-tailed prairie dog colonies totaling 403 ha within Badlands National Park were selected as locales to release ferrets during fall. This area was selected based on quality of habitat, remoteness from visitors and accessibility for field crews and is located within the Badlands Wilderness Area where mechanical transport is prohibited and approximately 550 bison range freely. Forty proposed release cages were stratified across the 3 colonies based on topography and degree of prairie dog activity. A helicopter was used to airlift over 8,000 lbs of supplies used for construction of 28 release cages/bison exclosures in the Badlands Wilderness Area several months prior to black-footed ferret arrival.