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Pocket gopher

Pocket gophers, commonly referred to as just gophers, are burrowing rodents of the family Geomyidae

Gopher Control Force A Bit About Gophers

Pocket gophers excavate long shallow, winding tunnels to obtain roots and tubers. Burrows for nesting and food storage, however, are deep and extensive and are marked by conspicuous mounds of earth near the entrances.

Pocket gophers dig primarily with their front claws and use their front teeth to cut roots and loosen soil or rocks. When moving backward through tunnels, they arch the tail so that its sensitive tip touches the tunnel wall. This allows the pocket gopher to run backward nearly as fast as it can forward.

Occasionally, gophers venture short distances from their burrows to collect succulent herbs, cutting the plants into short pieces and carrying them back in their cheek pouches. Pocket gophers do not hibernate, and stems, roots, and tubers that they hoard in storage chambers enable them to survive the winter. These solitary, pugnacious animals tolerate company only during the breeding season in spring or early summer.

About four weeks after mating, the female produces a litter of two to six, and she cares for her blind, hairless young for about six weeks. Then the offspring begin to develop rapidly, and in several more weeks they leave the mother’s burrow to excavate their own shelters.

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