Cedar City, Utah residents have been overrun by prairie dogs. The damage the Utah prairie dogs are inflicting has become so bad that a federal lawsuit has come from it.
The complaint was filed in U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City, asserting the U.S. Department of Interior has overstepped its constitutional authority by regulating what happens to the prairie dogs on privately owned property. Attorney Jonathan Wood said that, “These animals are a pest, and the federal government has no interest being involved in their regulation except on their own property.”
“Cedar City is a community under siege by a proliferation of prairie dogs and by federal regulations that prohibit reasonable measure to control the prairie dog population. The town has been inundated with prairie dogs that are leaving parks, gardens, vacant lots, the golf course, and even the local cemetery pockmarked with burrows and tunnels,” said Wood.
The lawsuit goes into further detail about the damage incurred at the municipal airport, golf course, and cemetery. The lawsuit also states that beyond the damage caused at the cemetery grave sites, the prairie dogs inflict emotional harm to patrons of the cemetery. It also details an investment for retirement that was rendered a financial flop because the Utah prairie dogs moved into the property. Any attempt to develop the 3.4 acres of land was rejected because of the animals that occupy the property.