The Humane Society’s Prairie Dog Coalition Defends a Declining Species


Prairie Dog Coalition pic

Prairie Dog Coalition

For over two decades, Lu Ann Sidney has served as principal at LNS Consulting Services, a Michigan-based consultancy that works with medical device and sterilization companies. Alongside her professional pursuits, Lu Ann Sidney supports the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and its Prairie Dog Coalition.

A species that once lived in 12 western states, as well as Mexico and Canada, the prairie dog occupies less than 10 percent of its historic ranges. Along with the natural threats the species faces, land development, hunting, and other human-led actions have contributed to drastically reducing the prairie dog population, which is now down by 95 percent.

The HSUS Prairie Dog Coalition is working to save this important animal through a five-pronged approach that focuses on habitat protection and species relocation. The Coalition also works to create buffer zones and visual barriers to help prevent prairie dog populations from moving into grazing land and other areas where they are not welcome. Other activities of the group include conservation education programs aimed at government agencies and members of the public.

Those interested in getting involved with the Prairie Dog Coalition can contribute to the group financially or serve as a volunteer. More information is available at


The Prairie Dog Coalition’s Relocation and Containment Efforts


Prairie Dog Coalition pic

Prairie Dog Coalition

A recipient of several patents, Lu Ann Sidney serves as the principal of LNS Consulting Services and has given talks on a wide range of topics in the medical device development field. Alongside her career, Lu Ann Sidney supports organizations such as the Humane Society of the United States’ Prairie Dog Coalition.

Created as a collaborative project between a variety of groups and individuals concerned about the endangered prairie dog populations, the Prairie Dog Coalition seeks to preserve habitat for the species. Alongside protecting land for the prairie dogs, such as the 18,000-acre Thunder Basin National Grassland in Wyoming, the coalition heads projects for relocation and containment.

The Prairie Dog Coalition’s relocation projects save prairie dogs from land development and human threats such as intentional poisoning. Volunteer teams capture the prairie dogs and transfer them to a preselected release site. Containment efforts include fencing areas or planting buffer zones to prevent prairie dogs from moving beyond a safe territory. Additionally, controlled burns are sometimes performed to encourage colonies to expand into areas where they will not face the possibility of being shot or poisoned.

Volunteer Efforts at Presbyterian Homes and Services

United Presbyterian Church
Image By – Jay Heiser

The principal of LNS Consulting Services in Victoria, Minnesota, Lu Ann Sidney advises clients on the choice of materials for the manufacture of a variety of medical devices, including electron beam sterilization devices. Lu Ann Sidney gives back to her local community by volunteering at GracePointe Crossing, a nursing home in the Presbyterian Homes & Services group.

Established at the behest of a committee of the United Presbyterian Church, Presbyterian Homes & Services built its first residence for senior citizens in 1955. Since then, it has expanded to include 45 communities across Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

Presbyterian Homes & Services maintains a commitment to Christian values such as integrity and stewardship, and it maintains a variety of programs to help residents live a full life. Many of these programs rely on the help of volunteers.

Volunteers at the organization’s nursing homes work in program areas ranging from crafts and sewing to gardening. Within these programs, some volunteers take on tasks such as visiting with the residents one-on-one or bringing therapy pets for visits, while other volunteers help with administrative tasks and serve in the dining room.