Watch: Prairie Dogs Do the Wave

To avoid being eaten

Black-tailed prairie dogs will do the wave together to avoid being eaten. (chadh/Flickr)
Photo: chadh/Flickr

Like football fans at a stadium, black-tailed prairie dogs also do the wave.

A study published last month suggests that the animals use this bobbing motion, which researchers call a “jump-yip,” not to cheer on a favorite team, but rather to avoid being eaten.

In fact, they’re testing the watchfulness of their neighbors. Alert prairie dogs will catch the wave, pass it through the colony, and hopefully live to dance another day. 

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