City of Lawton works to control prairie dog population

LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- The City of Lawton is working to control the black-tailed prairie dog population around Elmer Thomas Park. They're dispensing pesticide to get rid of some of them.

City officials say the holes the rodents create pose a risk to visitors around the park. Some people have even reported being injured after stepping in the holes.

7News received a tip from a concerned caller that the city was putting "stuff" down the prairie dog holes on Second Street.

The City of Lawton says it was authorized this year to administer pesticide across approximately 80 acres of land in Elmer Thomas Park. The green pellets are the pesticide. The city says it puts the pellets six inches down the prairie dog holes each week in an effort to control the rodent population. That authorization from the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry started November 20th of last year and will continue until February 17th.

There are two areas in Elmer Thomas Park that prairie dogs may inhabit and are not treated by a pesticide. Those areas are designated by signs. Visitors are encouraged not to feed them.

While this may be the first time many are seeing this the City has controlled the population for many years.

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