Monday, April 13, 2009
Kansas is helping out its neighbors by letting Missouri have some of its Greater Prairie Chickens.
Missouri has only a few hundred of the rare birds statewide, while Kansas has a springtime population of 25,000 to 40,000. Missouri conservation officials are allowed to trap about 100 of the Kansas birds per year, 50 cocks and 50 hens.
Max Alleger led a team of state conservationists for several days in Kansas over the past month trapping the birds.
The team locates prairie chicken booming grounds, where males gather during the summer mating season to attract females. The males' booming sound can travel more than a mile.
Trapped males are then taken to Missouri and released. Females are fitted with radio transmitters and picked up with their chicks in July to be shipped to Missouri.