If you live out in the stick of the Midwest as I do, one of the many pests you may run into is gophers. You typically do not see gophers in your yard because they spend most of their time underground. But you do see the dirt they have dug out to make their tunnels. These show up in the form of "Gopher Mounds."
I am going to show you how I take care of these rodents. There is plenty of information out on the Internet about gophers but not on how to catch them. What I have found is very basic and it always goes back to "You should hire a professional because you won't be able to do this on your own."
I am here to tell you that you can do it on your own and it won't cost you an arm and a leg. It will cost the gophers their lives. You need to make the choice as to what is more important, your lawn, garden, trees, personal safety, or the life of a gopher. At my house, the gopher loses.
Here is what you will need:
- leather gloves (or use your bare hand if you don't mind all of the greasy, grimy, gopher guts.)
- gopher traps (assume 2 per mound)
- chain or wire to secure the traps in place
- stake to hold the chain or wire in place
- wood, plastic, cardboard, something to cover the hole you dig to help block out light
- two feet of rebar or wooden dowel (to help find tunnels)
Step 1: Finding a fresh gopher mound
When trapping gophers, you want to make sure you focus your energy on fresh mounds. There is no sense wasting your time on a mound and tunnel system that is vacant. I try to walk my property every day if I can. I know where the gophers tend to do their thing so I keep an extra eye out in those areas.
New activity is easy to spot when it is new. After a rain, it can be difficult to tell new from old. New activity can be spotted by pushed over grass, wet dirt, or a mound in the middle of your yard and you are sure you didn't put it there.
When I fine new activity, I make note of where it is. When I get back to the house, I get out my hunting tools and go back.