The Black-footed Ferret Recovery Plan outlines steps for recovery of the
black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes) throughout its historical range.
Evidence suggests that the ferret was widely distributed and was probably
common prior to the destruction of its principal prey and associate, the
prairie dog (Cynomus m.). A recent outbreak of canine distemper in Wyoming
led to removal, to a captive breeding facility in Wyoming, of the last known.
ferrets ,in the wild. Despite the extfeme susceptibility of the black-footed
ferret to canine distemper, a strategy has been suggested in this plan to
anticipate-local extinctions of populations reintroduced from captive-bred
stock generated by the 58 remaining ferrets in captivity so that the ferret
may be returned to the wild and managed with minimum intervention.
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