When You’ve Got a Case of the Blues…See a Specialist…a Prairie Dog!

By Wendy Dew

This past weekend I was feeling a bit blue. So what would any red-blooded American, 30-something female do? I decided to go shopping! On the way to my favorite shopping area there is a super busy intersection where right nearby, believe it or not – a prairie dog colony lives (I know – only in Colorado!). At the intersection there is a large “park and ride” parking lot and a hilly field with tons of prairie dog mounds all over it. I have passed by the area hundreds of times and always try and get a peek at the prairie dogs.

As I headed to the shopping area, I decided to go to the “park and ride” and watch the prairie dogs for a while. The prairie dogs were running, eating, playing and making the funniest little squeaks and peeps. The sun was low in the sky and the field was lit up with golds, oranges and yellows. It was breathtaking! All in the middle of a busy urban area.

Prarie-DogsSitting there watching nature at its best put a really big smile on my face. The antics of the funny little prairie dogs made me laugh and chased my blues away. I think so many of us have forgotten the healing power of our own environment. I think it is so important that kids get exposure to nature, even in little ways, so they can learn to turn to nature when they need a little pick me up.

Well, of course I did go shopping and had a great time! But, when I look back on this day I will remember the nutty little prairie dogs and how they made me smile. I doubt I will remember anything I purchased that day.

About the author: Wendy Dew has been with EPA for 14 years and is the Environmental Education and Outreach Coordinator for Region 8.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.