gopher showing front teeth do not get close

Gopher Control Tips

A pest often overlooked until they move in is the pocket gopher, often shortened to just gopher. These pesky rodents dig up yards, destroy gardens, and leave ankle-turning soft spots in your lawn. Having an arsenal of gopher control tips helps increase your chances of success when battling these relentless diggers. First, knowing what gophers are and their habits will help you understand how to manage gophers in your yard.

What Are Gophers?

Gophers are small mammals that belong to the rodent family. They spend most of their lives underground, only coming above ground to eat a treat of fresh plants. Unlike many other rodents, gophers are territorial and don’t share living spaces. Therefore, gopher control tips are vital to preventing gophers from breeding and filling your yard with extensive burrows.

Four Species Of Gophers Call Colorado Home

Colorado is home to four types of gophers. Each species generally takes up residence in different Colorado areas with little overlap. The most common gopher in Colorado is the northern pocket gopher. Other Colorado gophers include Botta’s pocket gophers, the plains pocket gopher, and the yellow-faced pocket gopher.

Regardless of species, they share many characteristics. They range from 7 to 10 inches long and have short fur ranging from tan to assorted shades of brown. Additionally, they have round ears and extremely sharp teeth with two longer upper and lower incisors in front. Although each species has distinct habitat preferences, gopher control tips will help you reclaim your yard.

gopher control for yards when you first see them

Gopher Control Tips Help Prevent Damage From Their Diet

In addition to burrowing in your yard for shelter, gophers eat underground too. As vegetarians, gophers eat the parts of plants they come across while digging. Among these are the bulbs and roots they encounter. Occasionally gophers will emerge from their tunnel to feed on tender grasses and leaves, never straying far from the tunnel entrance.

gopher hole leaves no grass to grow destroying yard

A Gopher’s Habitat Is Underground

Gophers live almost exclusively underground. Tunnels consist of multiple branches, including areas for sleeping, raising young, and storing food. When constructing tunnels, the dirt removed creates mounds on the surface. Gophers are excavating pros with tunnels that may reach 600 feet. A single gopher can move over 2 tons of soil in a year.

Gophers Cause Extensive Damage

Gophers rarely make it into homes. Therefore, they are only on a homeowner’s radar as potential pests once it’s too late. The amount of damage a gopher problem will bring to your doorstep means you must have gopher control tips on hand.

gopher causing major damage to yard needing removal and ongoing control

Gopher Tunnels Are More Than Unsightly

Many people take great pride in maintaining a beautiful yard. When gophers move in, their extensive digging leaves telltale signs. Large dirt mounds, raised areas, and soft spots litter the ground. While unsightly, the uneven ground makes it easiest to trip, twist an ankle, or cause other painful injuries. Gopher control tips will help get your beautiful yard back.

Gophers Wrek Havoc On Gardens And Lawns

Because they eat the roots and bulbs of plants, lawns, and gardens show significant damage when gophers move in. On top of the tunnels and mounds, grass develops dead spots. These spots happen because gophers eat the root systems, killing off grass. Not only will you notice plants dying in vegetable gardens, but gophers will pull entire plants into their tunnels to eat. They are leaving you with little to show for your hard work.

Pipes And Utilities

On top of the damage to your yard, gophers pose a threat to underground utilities. When they come across buried cables, fiber lines, hoses, and even pipes, they will chew right through. On top of immense frustration, this behavior becomes time-consuming and expensive.

Gopher Removal Tips

When you see the first signs of gophers, it is time to put gopher control tips in place to help mitigate these pests. Gophers are notoriously tricky to get rid of. Their underground life makes them hard to keep out of your yard. Many steps that help reduce other pests do not help here. However, there are steps to help reduce the number of gophers and the amount of damage they cause.

catmint deters gophers

Plants That Deter Gophers

There are plants that gophers find offputting. Using these plants in and around your garden decreases the likelihood of gophers burrowing in that area. Some common plants gopher dislike include lavender, rosemary, catmint, and marigolds. Other plants known to deter gophers include gopher spurge, crown imperials, and salvia.

Gopher Control Trips Using Smell

Keeping gophers out of the garden is essential to having beautiful flowers and bountiful veggies. Gophers have a great sense of smell. Thus, using strong scents they dislike is a practical use of gopher control tips. 

Gopher Control Tips – Repellents

There are many gopher repellents on the market. Castor oil is a common ingredient among these products. When using any repellent, follow instructions carefully and ensure it is safe around children and pets. For a homemade repellent, mix one tablespoon of dish soap and two tablespoons of caster oil in a gallon of water. Then, spray regularly over problem areas.

net on strawberries to keep gophers off

Physical Gopher Barriers

Repellents fade over time and require reapplication. Another of the gopher control tips worth exploring is metal barriers. These barriers obstruct gopher’s paths, preventing them from tunneling in certain areas. In turn, they cannot reach the roots of protected plants.

Gopher Mesh To Cover Large Or Small Areas

A standard tool in gopher control tips, gopher mesh is made of galvanized steel. The openings in the mesh are ¾ inch or smaller and made of wire too thick for gophers to chew through. Although commonly used in smaller areas, such as under and around garden beds, it also works for large spaces. Laying gopher mesh under sod helps deter gophers over large areas.

Gopher Baskets Protect Plant Roots

Similar to gopher mesh, these baskets are premade wire cages designed to protect roots when planting. They come in various sizes, from 1 gallon to 15 gallons.

ultra sonic device removes even large rodents

Ultrasonic Spikes To Drive Gophers Away

Yet another tool in the gopher control tips arsenal are ultrasonic spikes. As the name suggests, these spikes emit pulses of ultrasonic sounds that burrowing pests find annoying. Thus, sending them packing in the other direction. Gopher spikes come solar-powered and economically priced. However, mixed reviews question their efficacy.

Keep It Safe And Call In The Professionals

When looking into gopher control tips, you will encounter extreme methods to eradicate these pests. Methods using flooding, fumes, and gasoline are dangerous and toxic to the environment. If gophers have you at your wit’s end, call in the professionals. Pest control professionals have the knowledge and tools to reduce the number of gophers in your yard safely.

OMNIS Pest Control – Gopher Control Experts

As a locally owned and operated business, OMNIS understands the struggles our neighbor’s experience regarding gophers. Our highly trained technicians will assess your property and build a detailed plan to address your gopher problem. We use industry-leading tools and products to aid you and your yard. Our friendly and dedicated team is here to help. Contact us today for more information on gopher control. 

adult gopher walking in yard