Or maybe I should say how to be unsuccessful trapping gophers. Much to the relief of the little furry devils that have decided this year my garden is the place to tunnel and reproduce; I am not one of the great trappers of all time. As a matter of fact I make Bill Murray look like the best that ever chased one of these pocket gophers. Maybe that’s it. Word has gotten out that my gardens are the safe place to spend the summer. Well…. “things are going to change” I said as I headed to the store to buy a few new traps. Yes things are going to change.
Now you might ask, (you might if you are not a gardener), why we can’t live with a few gophers in the garden. After all we are all creatures of the earth, right? As is said, if you have to ask…….. Anyway a single gopher can wipe out an entire garden if left to its own devices. I have way more than a single gopher. My garden is in big trouble.
For many years I have owned a couple of box type traps to go after the occasional gopher that takes up residence. Once in a blue moon I catch one, but usually I think it is all my digging and disrupting their burrows setting the traps that convinces them to go somewhere else. This year nothing deters them. After returning from the store with a couple of Macabee traps, a new Victor box trap and one other brand I can’t remember the name of, I set about the dirty business. The Macabee, (I think a better name would be “Macabre” look awful. If these things are as deadly as they look the gophers are in big trouble. I set one of these a few days ago and supposedly they are fool proof and very successful as long as you remember to tie a string to it and stake it to the ground. Nothing yet. The really weird story involves the Victor box trap.
Now these things are large and made of heavy plastic, one is pictured above. If a gopher is trapped in one of these, it is probably instant demise. There is no way a pocket gopher could move the trap. I dug out the entrance to one of the gopher tunnels and set the trap. The next morning I walked out to the front field where one of my vegetable gardens is to check. The trap was gone. No evidence of anything, just gone. I looked all over and it could not be found. Now what the???!!! At first I thought alright, I am not so young any more, did I really set it where I thought I did? Did I even set it at all? Because I have been eating my vegetables and hence have no memory issues, I realized I did set it and it was really gone.
After much thought all I can come up with is this possibility. We live in a place where there are skunks, opossums, raccoons, coyotes, and even foxes. What I am thinking is this. Maybe a gopher was caught and one of the larger animals smelled it, grabbed the gopher and the trap and dragged it off into the underbrush to eat the gopher. Maybe I am crazy, but that is all I can come up with???? So I guess I will have to buy myself another of these traps and secure it somehow when I set it. In the meantime I need to go outside and tend to the other traps I have going. If I can’t get rid of the ##$$!!!%% **!!!, I mean gophers, it won’t be for lack of trying.