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October 25, 2013

The Prairie Dog Coalition to Honor Con Slobodchikoff, Ph. D.

Annual Living on Burrowed Time gala to support efforts to protect prairie dogs, wildlife on the Great Plains

Prairie Dog Coalition

The Prairie Dog Coalition, a program of The Humane Society of the United States, will honor those who have helped protect prairie dogs at the 9th annual “Living on Burrowed Time IX” gala on Oct. 26. This year’s event will celebrate and honor special guest Con Slobodchikoff, Ph. D. as Prairie Dog Protector of the Year.

Slobodchikoff, Ph. D., professor emeritus at Northern Arizona University, director of the Animal Language Institute, and president and CEO of Animal Communications, Ltd. Slobodchikoff is a world-renowned animal behaviorist who has been studying prairie dog communication for more than 30 years. Last year, he was featured on BBC and NPR for his research on animal communication and published Chasing Dr. Doolittle: Learning the Language of Animals.

Slobodchikoff said: “Prairie dogs are rapidly disappearing. I salute everyone who is trying to save prairie dogs and keep them from going extinct. People said that there were lots of Passenger pigeons, until the last one died. I am really happy that so many people are working so hard to keep the same thing from happening to prairie dogs.”

Lindsey Sterling-Krank, director of the Prairie Dog Coalition said, "We are thrilled to honor Con's work this year. He has helped bridge the gap between prairie dogs and people time and time again. Beyond that, his research helps humans understand animals better so that we can coexist with less conflict."

Slobodchikoff’s work in animal communication, specifically in studying the prairie dog language, goes unparalleled. His work suggests that prairie dogs have a complex communication system that borders on language. His research proves prairie dogs have the ability to construct new words, and their language is the most sophisticated animal language system discovered to date.

As part of continuing efforts for native wildlife species of the West to have a bright future, proceeds from this year’s Living on Burrowed Time event will support the Prairie Dog Coalition’s work to save prairie dogs, associated species and their ecosystem. Ensuring survival of the prairie dog also ensures survival of hawks, eagles, badgers and black footed ferrets.

The gala will take place Oct. 26 at 5:30 p.m. at the St. Julien Hotel ballroom in Boulder. Tickets include fine dining, libations, music and dancing. There will be live and silent auctions. Auction items include an autographed football by Super Bowl champion Peyton Manning, a Breville Compact Juicer, a behind-the-scenes tour of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and more.

The Prairie Dog Coalition would like to thank several important sponsors for their support including Bishop Family Foundation, HSUS board member Patrick Partners Inc., David and Julie Worthington, Momentum, Diane Brinkmann, The Andrew Currie Fund & Love Animals.org and Hendricks Financial Services.

Media Contact: Samantha Miller, smiller@humanesociety.org, 301-258-1417

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