National Prairie Dog Expert to Speak at Doane
John Hoogland, one of the foremost researchers of Black-Tailed Prairie Dogs, will share his expertise at Doane College Wednesday, Nov. 8, as he presents "Ecology and Social Behavior of Prairie Dogs," at 7 p.m. in Whitcomb Lee Conservatory.
Prairie dogs are a controversial topic in the Midwest, viewed as a nuisance by some and an essential link in prairie habitat preservation by others. Hoogland, a professor of biology at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, has studied prairie dog behavior for more than 33 years.
Hoogland earned his doctorate in biology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He is an editor and contributor to the recent book "Conservation of the Black-Tailed Prairie Dog: Saving North America's Western Grasslands."
His presentation will explore such questions as: Can prairie dogs be saved from extinction? Should they be? Why do female prairie dogs mate with multiple males,? Why do prairie dogs give alarm calls? and Why do adult prairie dogs commonly kill the offspring of other adult prairie dogs?
Doane College's Aldrich Prairie Research Site near Grafton is home to the eastern-most Black-tailed Prairie Dog colony in Nebraska. Its 50 acres of wetland and prairie provide a unique combination of habitats.
It also provides abundant opportunities for undergraduate research and study in areas such as microbiology of wetlands, animal behavior and genetics studies, plant science, and the ecology of the prairie. Undergraduate research also has extended to the Departments of History, Physics, Biology, and Information Science and Technology.
In 2004, the Nebraska Wildlife Federation honored Doane with a Conservation Education Award for its work with the Aldrich Prairie Research site. The award honors select Nebraskans for conservation of the state's fish, wildlife and natural resources.
Doane College is the first private liberal arts and sciences college in Nebraska. Accomplished faculty and staff enliven the college's liberal arts focus to educate students to become leaders. The college transforms the concept of leadership by connecting superior classroom learning with real-world experience. Doane has campuses in Crete, Lincoln and Grand Island, and is consistently ranked among the top colleges and universities in the Midwest by U.S.News & World Report and The Princeton Review.