Gopher mounds are generally flat, not rounded little hills like mole tunnels are, so they can be tricky to spot. How do you know if what you’re looking at is a gopher mound, or just a patch of dirt? Filled-in gopher holes look a lot like a regular dirt patch at first glance, but if you look closely, you may be able to see where the hole once was. Gophers tend to fill their holes when they’ve served their purpose, and leave whats called a “plug” behind. If you can see a slight indentation or protrusion in the dirt patch you’re examining, it may be the site where a gopher tunneled above ground.
Because gophers burrow, they can cause problems with preexisting underground equipment such as power cables, internet lines, sprinkler systems, irrigation pipes, and more. If they do happen to hit a main water line, substantial soil erosion can occur in the time it takes for that pipe to be repaired. If they hit a power line or internet cable, it will likely warrant a costly, inconvenient repair bill.
If you notice that the pipes and cables running below ground are having substantially more problems than normal, a check for pests interfering with these systems is a great idea. The sheaths of dirt that house these pipes and cables give gophers easy access, which can spell disaster if they’re allowed free reign.
Some gopher tunnels can be as shallow as 6-12 inches underground, which can have a severe impact on the stability and integrity of your lawn if they’re packed in close enough together. Step in the wrong place, and this can seriously injure anyone the ground collapses on, forming a nasty little pit that can bruise or break legs. In extreme cases, giant sinkholes can occur, and have been known to be downright deadly. For obvious reasons, this makes it imperative to fill gopher holes as soon as possible.
If bare dirt patches begin appearing clustered together in a certain part of your yard, make sure to cordon it off until you can have it professionally inspected for pests and make sure the tunnels are filled back in to retain the integrity of the ground.
If you notice vegetation disappearing into thin air, the lower parts of trees being stripped of bark, or formerly-healthy trees and shrubs starting to show signs of distress, you may have a gopher problem. Gophers can often make their presence known before their holes start appearing by dragging vegetation down into their tunnels by the roots, or gnawing at the roots of trees and various shrubberies.
While none of these signs point to gophers beyond a reasonable doubt—holes in the yard could mean the neighbor got an unruly pup, burst pipes could just be burst pipes, and so on—seeing more than one of these sorts of problems beginning to appear around the same time means getting us in to check things out could save you a lot of money down the road.
Moles, Voles, Raccoons, Possums could all potentially cause damage similar to gophers. Call the experts who can identify and take care of any rodent or pest on your property. Gopher Control and Pest Control Experts in Riverside, San Diego, Los Angeles and other surrounding areas.
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