Archive for March 15th, 2008

Gopher control with the Bun-Vac 6000

Saturday, March 15th, 2008

The farmers in Saskatchewan are once again grappling with how best to control the gophers (more correctly known as Richardson’s ground squirrels) that are over-running their croplands. Not many people, including myself, are entirely happy with even a temporary relaxation of the rules on using the pesticide Strychnine. Shooting gophers could make a difference, but there aren’t enough shooters in Saskatchewan to make a dent in the gopher population. Apparently there is a device on the market called the Rodenator that is considered a humane way to kill the varmints, basically by blowing them up by igniting a mixture of oxygen and propane in their tunnels.

Apparently $380,000 has been committed by the provincial Agriculture ministry to research the problem.

For the National Post story click here.

Perhaps the most fascinating solution mentioned in that article was proposed by an animal-rights activist from B.C.

“There are vacuums that can suck them out of their holes without harming them, and you could set aside some Crown land or farmers’ land for gophers to use,” she said. “Then you could use vegetation they prefer, or radio frequencies to keep them on that land.”

I can’t help but wonder whether she’s thinking of the Bun-Vac 6000, featured in that documentary Wallace & Gromit – The Curse of the Were-Rabbit …