Humane Gopher Control

February 1, 2014Allison Murray

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This is a part of my front yard. See all those lovely orange piles? That’s my dirt. I live in Oklahoma where we have clay, known locally as red dirt and white carpet is just about the worst thing you could do to your home. Unless you like orange tinged carpet in which case, have at it!

But the reason why my dirt is all up on top of the grass is because I have a weensy pest problem. Gophers.

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Now I apologize for the poor pictures but these are the three main little “communities” I have in my front yard. Yep, I didn’t even step foot in the backyard to snap pics back there!

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And this is the newest  one on the north side of my house. My father had parked his trailer over here one day and a few days later there were 7 or so mounds. The next day we counted 18.  All of these holes are just steps away from my foundation. Eek!

I knew that something needed to be done, but to be honest sometimes when I’m sitting at my computer and thinking I stare off into my front yard. And guess what I watch? Sometimes it is the roadrunner that lives in my flower bed tooling around, sometimes it is the neighborhood dogs, sometimes it is “my” squirrel that lives in the pecan tree but often it’s little creatures popping their heads out of the soil and pushing it around with these cute little hands! Yes, I’ve become attached to my gophers.

And when my dad drove me to the hardware store and bought a cone of “poison peanuts” I got so, so upset. Like crying in the hardware store kind of losing it. I hate the thought of killing anything. It was then mentioned that these creatures were a serious risk to my home and its foundation and that something needed to be done which I understood. Though they didn’t sell anything there, finally the sales guy told us about a humane gopher approach by using windmills (because I guess a weepy me is just too depressing to not try to do something about it!)

humane-gopher-dreamalittelbiIt turns out that these windmills when attached to a long piece of conduit pushed into the ground create a rattling sound that reverberates and drives underground creatures like gophers and moles crazy. So I snapped up three online and my dad and I went back to the hardware store again to purchase 10 foot conduit poles for under two bucks each. My dad then made a thumper which is a tool to drive things into the ground using a larger metal pipe and cap. He slipped it over the conduit and drove it into the ground.

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To be honest I’m not sure what I expected out of the long skinny boxes that arrived in the mail but I was super surprised that I had to put these things together. The directions are easy enough to follow but you really need two sets of hands to get this worked out easily.

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After putting together you slide onto the pole and then allow the wind to do its thing.

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And since I have a tendency to run into things these suckers are a good 6 feet up in the air so that we don’t have to worry about me slicing my head open when I’m not paying attention.

Oh, and see those other little red dirt piles? Those are from crickets. Yuck. And see back in the shadows? Those were brand new gopher holes from that day!

But now my windmills are in place and I’ll see just how they work out for me. The reviews are either really positive or really negative, but my dad did some research for me and I’m pretty confident that these are going to work well with my particular type of soil. I’m not sure just how long it should take before these suckers start working but I’ll keep you posted. As long is it drives them away from my foundation these guys can live in my back, back yard or out near the street to their heart’s content! And yay for not putting out poison and killing my cute little pests!

Written by Allison Murray - Visit Website

Comments (1)

  • Pat schwab

    February 1, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    Hi Allison, we have had gopher problems but never to your extent. They are cute to watch but can be very destructive. I hope this works for you and they look cool in your yard. Pat S

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