Not worried about the "grass" as I haven't watered these lawns
since about May when the last good rains came through from the
Pacific Ocean! :)
My plan is to get rid of the gopher, and then cover the "lawn" with
wood chips. Seems to me that the gopher should go away if I take
all the roots from the plants away; but I don't know my enemy all
that well yet, so, I can't say that for sure.
One thing any hunter needs to do to be successful is to know
their prey. You don't.
Gophers make blockages in their tunnel systems that they can
take down or put up. Your gases may not get to the gopher, are
dangerous for you and your yard, and just won't work as
effectively as trapping.
Once you learn to trap, it is simple, and you will be able to catch
one in 12 hours or less.
Of your methods, exhaust gas works best and is the safest,
although it may kill grass and plants.
I can't imagine the gases being dangerous for me, outside, in the
fresh air, on top of a mountain, nor can I imagine them being bad
for the yard (remember, plants 'eat' carbon dioxide, and 'poop'
However, I *can* imagine trapping being more efficient.
The only problem with trapping, at the moment, is, (a) I don't have
a trap (so I need to buy one), and (b) I think trapping kills them.
I've never done it, so, maybe there is something to that, but, on
cursory inspection, plants *love* carbon dioxide. It's what they
I tried that once. Shoved the hose in as far as possible (6-8 feet) and let
it run. Our soil is sand and all the water did was soak in, burrow never
flooded. Went to pull out the hose, no way...the burrow had collapsed
around it and I had to dig it out. YMMV
I've learned to live with gophers. They move around quite a bit so wait and
he will go next door.
I'm giving up on the water flooding gopher solution method!
I don't know if it worked yet, but, after 10,000 gallons was poured
into two gopher holes, I noticed *all* the concrete cracks weeping.
For example, here's a shot of the steps below the gopher hole:
And, here's a shot of the retaining wall at the bottom of the steps:
Seems to me the water might be damaging things, so, if it didn't
already work on getting rid of my first couple of gophers, I'm
giving up on it and moving on to something else!
Yea. Flooding them out isn't such a hot idea after all.
Turns out just *buying* the Mcabee trap scared them away!
I checked the two 20'x20' "lawns" today (separated by a
walkway) and there were *no new gopher holes*.
Wow. All I did was buy a trap, and the gophers went away.
Maybe the water trick *does work*; but still, it's not all
that efficient, in that you're risking far more damage, and
you're consuming 10,000 gallons of water & electricity to
pump it all out of the ground.
Anyway, I have other "lawns" (separated by a driveway), so,
I will still get a chance to use that trap after all.
The one good thing about the trap, especially since gophers
tend to be solitary creatures (when not breeding), is that
it would be concrete when they're caught.
At the moment, I'm *thinking* that the water made them go
away, but, I won't know for another couple of days.
Meanwhile, I'll put the trap in use on another "lawn".
Seems like I either killed them, or just made it inconvenient for them
so they moved. Then I had to fill in all the holes the water made, and
found places where it washed out a lot of fill, and that concerned me.
Believe me, if you learn how to use that trap, it works very well. Just
make the hole wide enough and tall enough. It has to be wide enough for
the springs to extend, and tall enough so you can push it down the
tunnel a ways with your finger on the back of the trigger so that you
don't set it off setting it. I haven't got caught by one, but by the
look of some of the gophers I have caught, it looks like it hurts big time.
My experience is similar. As I showed in the photos, water was
seeping out of everywhere (concrete steps, concrete retaining wall),
so, I'm not really keen on gushing them out anymore.
I have plenty of other neglected lawns (the landscaper must have had
a big budget because they're scattered all over the place) where I'm
sure I have gophers to trap. But first I'm going to put wood chips
on the two lawns that I've cleared of the gopher.
Then I'll move on to the lawns across a driveway.
I only bought one trap, but, the illustrations show using two,
back to back.
Do you use two? Or just one?
Do you bait with a carrot or something?
No, the trap is trigger activated. They are very sensitive, and tricky.
It works when the gopher pushes against the trigger that is standing
vertical. The two hooks come together across their chest. No bait at
all. I have seen lots of variations, even some that act like a
guillotine. The Macabee is simple, lasts forever, and works once you
learn how to set it properly. They work best at the end of a tunnel,
rather than in the middle of one. Hence, look for the freshest dirt
dome, or damp dirt in the middle of a cone that has just been pushed
out. That means an active tunnel.
gopher going in ONE direction. Hence, you want it where they will be
coming head first, and that is at the END of the tunnel. There are some
that work in tunnels, but you have to dig down, and clear a lot of dirt,
and have them set just right. AND, gophers have been known to nip
fingers of intruders.
My trailer park has a trap they put out, and they
do catch and move and release. Wasted effort.
On the roads near me, I see woodchuck / groundhog
all the time near the roads. Scampering about.
This part of the world has plenty of them. I could
trap and kill five a day, and hardly affect the
You may be unable to do much about things.
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