Flooding will cause unseen damage, and settling. Maybe not now, but
later. I have run water 24 hours, and not gotten the gopher. Then I
thought, "I wonder where all that water went, and what damage it did. I
gave up flooding forthwith.
Trap them. Consider it a challenge. I do. Every time there's a new
hole, I keep after it until they are dead or gone. Word must be out in
Gopherdom, as I have had gophers disappear, and they didn't get trapped
in my traps. Just one day, no more holes, but nothing in my traps, either.
I consider it a personal challenge every time I get a gopher. And if
you don't notice it until they have more than four piles of dirt, you
aren't checking your property often enough.
Funny you should mention that because I stopped the garden hose
after noticing that the cracks and joints in the concrete retaining
walls and steps and even in the driveway were seeping water.
Then I thought about the house, which for one of the two
garden hoses, was at the same level. That's when I stopped.
Still, I was amazed that ZERO water came to the surface, even after
roughly 5,000 gallons was pumped into the ground. Wow. What a capacity
to absorb water the dry soil has! (It has only rained once since about
May of this year).
Maybe the time to flush them out is after the rains start?
Google St. Francis Dam collapse, California. It happened when the dirt
in the dam became so saturated that it flowed like water, creating the
new word, "liquefaction." You have created the same thing, only you
have undermined your retaining walls, steps, and driveway putting air
holes in there where you've washed away support dirt, or caused it to
subside and drop. Look to see them start sinking, cracking, and
otherwise rapidy deteriorating here shortly.
I'll look, for sure.
But, there's no way I put more water in than that which is
absorbed during a good week of rainy onslaught from the sky.
Still, maybe the rain doesn't soak as deeply as the water
I put in via the tunnels?
Yeah. It was literally flowing out of the base of the retaining wall,
where there was concrete on concrete.
I wonder if it's good (or bad) for the roots to flood things like
that; but, more intriguing is how the gopher manages to stay dry
in the winter when it rains for weeks on end here in California.
The ground must be sopping wet three feet deep from the rains.
Dunno. But, I've belated learned the way to go is either to
put rodenticide in there (no more hugging 'dem critters); or,
to put the Mcabee trap (it hugs them for you).
Once I'm sure the rodent is gone, I can then continue on
with covering all my "lawns" with wood chips:
After a week of dealing with this, and with all your help,
I'm pretty sure the best answer is the $9 Macabee trap and
a carrot (or some other enticement).
Of course, I haven't set any traps yet, but, I have a few
other lawns to try this on.
BTW, what do you call it when you have patches of "lawn"
separated by "stuff" (like driveways, the house, the pool,
etc.). Are they lawnlets? They're about 20' by 20' (or so)
and are built into the landscaping (the house is on a hill).
Having yet to set the traps, my main question is:
1. Do people bother covering their scent on the trap?
2. Do people use two, back to back, like in the illustrations?
3. Do people bait the traps (carrots? lettuce? celery?)
No, no, and no. Gophers are gardeners. They dig tunnels under
vegetation, then cruise along, eating the roots of the plants. They may
tunnel under concrete, but not a lot, and not far. There is no food there.
Thanks. I find it interesting that gopher burrows are up to
about 6 feet deep. I know *tree* roots go deeper than that,
but, my intuition tells me most of the roots must be in the
first two feet of soil.
Not familiar with that, Oren. I'm going Friday. Where is it? It was
weird in Mexico, going along, and seeing how they would do a floor at a
time, leaving the rebar sticking up for the next floor, IF they got the
money ever to do another floor. And it was very common to see. You can
see all sorts of improvised construction methods in Mexico, some
hilarious, some ingenious.
Yeah. After spending about $30 or $40 on noxious chemicals, and who knows
what it costs for 10,000 gallons of well water to be pumped, plus possibly
damaging the steps and retaining walls (from the water pressure), I now
realize why the $9 *reusable* trap is the way to go.
I have the trap ready just in case I see any gopher mounds tomorrow, as
I tramped them all down and raked them over for an hour today, so, anything
that shows up tomorrow is fresh (and would mean the flooding failed anyway).
On Sat, 30 Nov 2013 05:35:27 +0000, Danny D'Amico wrote:
This article seems to be pretty good about what to do:
It seems to indicate I have a Botta’s (or valley) pocket gopher:
Thomism bottae http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Botta%27s_pocket_gopher
Since you have to know thine enemy before you can make it leave,
I'm researching a bit on this particular species set.
The female produces one litter of about 6 gophers per year and
the babies live on average about 3 years. Their deep lodge system
can easily be 1 to 3 meters below ground, but their tunnels are
shallower, at about 10 to 50 cm deep. They move about above ground
mostly at night but are most active underground in the afternoon.
However, this article says they breed thrice a year:
Since they feed wholly on plant matter, you'd think they would
go away once I covered the "lawn" with chips...
At a hardware store, I did see a gadget, that allows
you to park a vehicle near the hole, and run exhaust
into the gopher hole. I figure it would either bug out
the other hole, or die in place and stink.
I tried one time to flood it out with the garden hose,
but 15 minutes or so, and no results I could tell.
Wonder if the actor Bill Murray makes house calls?
Hello, Mr. Groundhog, this is Mr. Squirrel, your
This was several years ago. It was a flex tube
about an inch diameter, with a sort of cup at
the end to go over the exhaust pipe. Many small
engines like Briggs and Stratton lawn mowers,
the exhaust goes through 1/2 pipe thread. It would
be possible to unscrew the muffler, and screw some
iron pipe on. Would be noisy, but that might help
the general effect.
Stuff to cram in, and light on fire?
I wonder if, some wet day, you might
cram in some dry sawdust. Light that on
fire, and push in combustion air with a
shop vac. Dunno if that would help, but it
might be fun to try. Road flare and back
fill could do some thing.
On Mon, 02 Dec 2013 19:11:19 -0500, Stormin Mormon wrote:
I think I've given up on the "novel" ways to get 'em.
I really just wanted them to go away.
I bought the Mcabee trap, so, if any pop up on the lawn
where I had flooded them, I'll put the trap in and let
you know what happens.
At the moment, I have tramped down all the gopher mounds,
so, if there is any activity in the flooded areas, I'll
probably know by tomorrow.
Looks like a railroad flare to me, just shorter. I have also used the
cheap smoke bombs sold at 4th of July and New Years. Those work, too.
Just use them on the freshest dirt mound, and seal afterward. The
chemicals in them create their own oxygen, and they won't go out
underground. They will leave a stain on the grass, tho.
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