If you have found brown mounds of dirt in your yard you have a new neighbor. These are often the result of pocket gophers. These little rodents can dig burrows under your grass or in your planters and can do a surprising amount of damage.  

They have been known to gnaw through underground cables, divert water through their tunnels, kill plants and trees by sheering off roots, and make your lawn look like it has spots like a leopard. They are also not that easy to get rid of. 

Utah State University offers extensive information on pocket gophers and ways to control them. 

Pocket gophers are not protected by the state of Utah or by and federal law. There are poisons and bait you can buy at home and garden centers, but you have to be careful if you have pets.

There are devices that will put the granules underground in the tunnels to protect other animals and children. Trapping them can be effective, especially on a small scale. Traps can also be dangerous for pets. Careful placement of the these devices can get the job done. 

This video from Utah company demonstrates an interesting way to rid your yard of gophers. They pump carbon monoxide into the tunnels. There are no residual effects of poisons left in the yard and it is environmentally friendly. 

Good luck if you discover you have pocket gophers making a home in your lawn. You might want to wall it off and make your own rodent zoo. Charge tickets for the neighborhood kids to come and see. 

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