BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) — Boulder City Council delayed a decision on Tuesday night about whether to use lethal measures to control a prairie dog colony. Public comment went on for so long that the council was unable to reach a conclusion.

(credit: CBS)

The proposed plan focuses on a large area north of Jay Road between Highway 36 and the Diagonal Highway. If approved, the new control efforts would start in 2021.

Currently, the city relies on non-lethal relocation, but a summary of the new motion states the method has, “resulted in an inability to keep up with the rates of establishment and spread of prairie dogs in [Open Space and Mountain Parks] irrigated fields,” leading to “noticeable impacts to agricultural viability and to vegetation and soils across the landscape.”

An estimated 132,000 prairie dogs inhabit 4,457 acres of city-managed Open Space. According to the motion presented to council, that number represents the “highest levels since OSMP began tracking acres occupied in 1996.”

Boulder City Council’s next meeting is on Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 6 p.m. You can watch it live on Boulder 8 TV.

RELATED: Boulder Considers More Lethal Measures To Control Prairie Dog Population

Audra Streetman

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