Today on Working Wild U, we’re spotlighting, quite literally, one special species that calls the Great Plains home. A small predator that was thought to be extinct…. twice! Meet the black-footed ferret, the most endangered mammal in North America.
Thanks to community-driven efforts spanning the Great Plains, from dedicated ranchers in eastern Colorado to the Fort Belknap Indian Community in northern Montana, this elusive predator is staging a remarkable comeback. Join Hallie, Jared and producer Zach as they head into the prairie underground for a close look at this unlikely comeback story, and the obstacles that stand in the way.
Links and references from Can we bring black-footed ferrets back from the brink?
Incredible music video about black-footed ferrets:
Safe harbor agreement fact sheet for landowners from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
WWF’s Black-footed ferret information page
WWF’s Plowprint report
Colorado Parks and Wildlife short film on ferret recovery, featuring the May Ranch:
Associated Press story on Fort Belknap reintroduction by Matthew Brown
On Land magazine story on May Ranch reintroduction, A comeback for the ages
Working Wild U is a production of Montana State University Extension and Western Landowners Alliance with support from the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation and you, our listeners.
This episode was written and produced by Zach Altman with support from our hosts, Jared Beaver and Hallie Mahowald.
Louis Wertz and Jared Beaver are our Executive Producers. Music is from Artlist and Blue Dot Sessions.
Special thanks to Tevin Messerly Fort Belknap Fish and Wildlife, Michael Kinsey at Aaniiih Nakoda College, Kristy Bly at World Wildlife Fund, Dallas and Riley May, and Jonathan Rietz at Colorado Parks and Wildlife.