Photo © Bruce Porisch

Prairie Dog

Distribution of prairie dogs covers most of the western two-thirds of the state. The population is considered stable in the state, in fact prairie dog control measures are actively taken to assist damage the animals cause on some private land.

In other parts of the country, prairie dogs home range has decreased. The US Fish and Wildlife Service considered a petition to list them as a federal threatened species in the late 1990s. South Dakota is one of eleven states that has worked cooperatively to develop management programs to help avoid the need to list the black-tailed prairie dog as a federal threatened species. In August 2004, the black-tailed prairie dog was removed from federal candidate list, due to results of surveys that better described the extent of the species' range and commitments by state, tribal, federal, and private entities to continue to work cooperatively on this issue.


Year-round - except in the Conata Basin and several other areas within the Buffalo Gap National Grasslands. Please contact the US Forest Service for additional information regarding specific closure locations at 605.279.2125.

Daily Limit:


Shooting Hours:


There are no restrictions on caliber of rifles and/or handguns.