Shadow Bear: What I have observed of them, myself, is that these tiny animals breed in early spring when the males roam the night in search of females...Mothers typically give birth to three kits in early summer and raise their young alone in abandoned prairie dog burrows.
Shiona (the white heroine): I read that ferrets stalk and kill prairie dogs during the night. Using their keen sense of smell and whiskers to guide them through pitch-black burrows, ferrets suffocate the sleeping prey, an impressive feat considering the two species are about the same weight.
Shadow Bear: In turn, coyotes, badgers, and owls prey on ferrets, whose life span in the wild is often less than two winters … They have a short, quick life.
That awkward post-coital chat was inexplicably plagiarized from a scientific article about black-footed ferrets. The author probably did it for the realism. We all know how pioneer women struggled to survive on their own, waging a constant battle against enemies and the elements, with barely enough time to kick back and do some light reading about South Dakota's prairie mammals.
Here are some other books from Shadow Bear's author, Cassie Edwards. As you can see from the titles, her romance novels are clearly sensitive and respectful to Native Americans and their history: