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Gopher Control

One of the most destructive pests at our farm, and in gardens and landscapes in the California Bay Area, is the California Pocket Gopher. Some detailed information about this pest and how to control it is given at the University of California Integrated Pest Management website: http://ipm.ucanr.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7433.html


The ways we use to reduce gopher damage include:


  1. Protecting the adjacent urban forest, which provides habitat for Great Horned Screech Owls and Red Tail Hawks. We have an adjacent forest with eucalyptus, walnut, and oak trees that provides habitat for owls and hawks. If you don’t have tall trees with large screech owls near your garden, then another owl that can be helpful in controlling gophers is the Barn Owl. You can attract barn owls by installing a barn owl box. Barn owl boxes can be purchased at www.barnowlbox.com.

  2. Trapping the gophers with traps. We’ve had the most success with the Cinch medium-sized gopher trap. Cinch Gopher Traps It can sometimes help to bait the Cinch Traps with peanut butter. Another trap that is highly reviewed by other organic farmers (we’ve had less experience using this one) is the Gopher Hawk. Gopher Hawk Trap

  3. Planting valuable young trees into gopher wire baskets. Figs are especially attractive to gophers and need