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Encyclopedia > Pocket gopher
Pocket gophers
Fossil range: Early Oligocene - Recent

Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Superfamily: Geomyoidea
Family: Geomyidae
Bonaparte, 1845
Genera

Cratogeomys
Geomys
Orthogeomys
Pappogeomys
Thomomys
Zygogeomys The Oligocene epoch is a geologic period of time that extends from about 34 million to 23 million years before the present. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1999x1324, 363 KB) Pocket gopher; Gillian Bowser; 1990 http://www. ... Scientific classification or biological classification is a method by which biologists group and categorize species of organisms. ... For other uses, see Animal (disambiguation). ... Typical Classes Subphylum Urochordata - Tunicates Ascidiacea Thaliacea Larvacea Subphylum Cephalochordata - Lancelets Subphylum Myxini - Hagfishes Subphylum Vertebrata - Vertebrates Petromyzontida - Lampreys Placodermi (extinct) Chondrichthyes - Cartilaginous fishes Acanthodii (extinct) Actinopterygii - Ray-finned fishes Actinistia - Coelacanths Dipnoi - Lungfishes Amphibia - Amphibians Reptilia - Reptiles Aves - Birds Mammalia - Mammals Chordates (phylum Chordata) include the vertebrates, together with... Subclasses & Infraclasses Subclass †Allotheria* Subclass Prototheria Subclass Theria Infraclass †Trituberculata Infraclass Metatheria Infraclass Eutheria Mammals (class Mammalia) are warm-blooded, vertebrate animals characterized by the production of milk in female mammary glands and by the presence of: hair, three middle ear bones used in hearing, and a neocortex region in... Suborders Sciuromorpha Castorimorpha Myomorpha Anomaluromorpha Hystricomorpha Rodentia is an order of mammals also known as rodents. ... Families †Eomyidae †Florentiamyidae Geomyidae Heteromyidae Geomyoidea is a superfamily of rodent that contains the pocket gophers (Geomyidae), the kangaroo rats and mice (Heteromyidae), and their fossil relatives. ... Charles Lucien Jules Laurent Bonaparte (May 24, 1803 _ July 29, 1857) was a French naturalist and ornithologist. ... Species See text The genus Geomys contains nine species of pocket gophers often collectively referred to as the eastern pocket gophers. ... Orthogeomys is a genus of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Pappogeomys is a genus of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Species Thomomys talpoides Thomomys idahoensis Thomomys clusius Thomomys mazama Thomomys monticola Thomomys bulbivorus Thomomys bottae Thomomys townsendii Thomomys umbrinus The smooth-toothed pocket gophers, genus Thomomys, are so called because they among the only pocket gophers without grooves on their incisors. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Michoacan Pocket Gopher (Zygogeomys trichopus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ...

The pocket gophers are burrowing rodents of the family Geomyidae. These are the "true" gophers, though several ground squirrels of the family Sciuridae are often called gophers as well. The name "pocket gopher" on its own may be used to refer to any of a number of subspecies of the family. Pocket gophers, despite being largely a pest, are a symbol of the U.S. state of Minnesota, sometimes called the "Gopher State". Suborders Sciuromorpha Castorimorpha Myomorpha Anomaluromorpha Hystricomorpha Rodentia is an order of mammals also known as rodents. ... A gopher is a small burrowing rodent. ... Genera See entry. ... Genera Many: see text. ... This article is about the zoological term. ... The hierarchy of scientific classification In biological classification, family (Latin: familia, plural familiae) is a rank, or a taxon in that rank. ... Capital Saint Paul Largest city Minneapolis Area  Ranked 12th  - Total 87,014 sq mi (225,365 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 400 miles (645 km)  - % water 8. ...

Contents

Distribution

Pocket gophers are widely distributed in North America, extending into Central America. North America North America is a continent[1] in the Earths northern hemisphere and (chiefly) western hemisphere. ... For other uses, see Central America (disambiguation). ...


Appearance

Gophers are heavily built, and most are moderately large, weighing a few hundred grams. A few species reach weights approaching 1 kg. Males are always larger than the females and can be nearly double their weight.[1] Most gophers have brown fur which often closely matches the color of the soil in which they live. Their most characteristic feature is their large cheek pouches, from which the word "pocket" in their name derives. These pouches are fur-lined, and can be turned inside out. They extend from the side of the mouth well back onto the shoulders. They have small eyes and a short, hairy tail which they use to feel around tunnels when they walk backwards. BIC pen cap, about 1 gram. ... The hierarchy of scientific classification. ... The U.S. National Prototype Kilogram, which currently serves as the primary standard for measuring mass in the U.S. It was assigned to the United States in 1889 and is periodically recertified and traceable to the primary international standard, The Kilogram, held at the Bureau International des Poids et... A dogs hair usually consists of longer, stiffer, guard hairs—which can be straight, wiry, or wavy, and of various lengths, hiding a soft, short-haired undercoat. ... Loess field in Germany Surface-water-gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland Technically, soil forms the pedosphere: the interface between the lithosphere (rocky part of the planet) and the biosphere, atmosphere, and hydrosphere. ... Look up Cheek in Wiktionary, the free dictionary The Cheeks are the fleshy area of the face below the eyes and between the nose and the left or right ear, the skin being suspended by the chin and the yaws. ... Human mouth The mouth, also known as the buccal cavity or the oral cavity, is the orifice through which an organism takes in food and water. ... This article is about the body part. ...


Behavior

All pocket gophers are burrowers. They are larder hoarders, and their cheek pouches are used for transporting food back to their burrows. Gophers can collect large hoards. Their presence is unambiguously announced by the appearance of mounds of fresh dirt about 20 cm in diameter. These mounds will often appear in vegetable gardens, lawns, or farms, as gophers like moist soil. They also enjoy feeding on vegetables. For this reason, some species are considered agricultural pests. They may also damage trees in forests. Although they will attempt to flee when threatened, they may attack other animals, including cats and humans, and can inflict serious bites with their long, sharp teeth. A burrow is a hole or tunnel dug into the ground by an animal to create a space suitable for habitation, temporary refuge, or as a byproduct of locomotion. ... Hoarding is the storing of food or other goods. ... Look up mound in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ... DIAMETER is an AAA protocol (Authentication, Authorization and Accounting) succeeding its predecessor RADIUS. // The name is a pun on the RADIUS protocol, which is the predecessor (a diameter is twice the radius). ... A plate of vegetables Vegetable is a culinary term which generally refers to an edible part of a plant. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... A lawn is an area of recreational or amenity land planted with grass, and sometimes clover and other plants, which are maintained at a low, even height. ... Farms, East of Gorgan, Iran. ... Larval form of some beetle is damaging specimen of Sceliphron destillatorius in entomogical collection. ... A decidous beech forest in Slovenia. ...


Classification

There has been much debate among taxonomists about which races of pocket gopher should be recognised as full species, and the following list cannot be regarded as definitive. Look up taxonomy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

  • Family Geomyidae
    • Genus Cratogeomys; some authors treat this genus as a subgenus of Pappogeomys.
      • Yellow-faced Pocket Gopher (Cratogeomys castanops)
      • Smoky Pocket Gopher (C. fumosus)
      • Llano Pocket Gopher (C. gymnurus)
      • Merriam´s Pocket Gopher (C. merriami)
      • Querétaro Pocket Gopher (C. neglectus)
      • Naked-nosed Pocket Gopher (C. tylorhinus)
      • Zinser´s Pocket Gopher (C. zinseri)
    • Genus Geomys - eastern pocket gophers; principally found in the south-western United States, east of the Sierra Nevada mountains.
      • Geomys arenarius; two subspecies, the Desert and White Sands Pocket Gophers
      • Attwater's Pocket Gopher (G. attwateri)
      • Plains Pocket Gopher (G. bursarius); two subspecies
      • Jones' Pocket Gopher (G. knoxjonesi)
      • Geomys personatus; 5 subspecies including the Texas, Davis, Maritime and Carrizo Springs Pocket Gophers
      • Geomys pinetis; 4 subspecies, the Southeastern, Cumberland Island, Sherman's and Goff's Pocket Gophers
      • Geomys texensis; 2 subspecies, including the LLano Pocket Gopher
    • Genus Orthogeomys - giant pocket gophers or taltuzas; found in Mexico and Central America.
      • Chiriqui Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys cavator)
      • Cherrie´s Pocket Gopher (O. cherriei)
      • Oaxacan Pocket Gopher (O. cuniculus)
      • Darien Pocket Gopher (O. dariensis)
      • Giant Pocket Gopher (O. grandis)
      • Variable Pocket Gopher (O. heterodus)
      • Hispid Pocket Gopher (O. hispidus)
      • Big Pocket Gopher (O. lanius)
      • Nicaraguan Pocket Gopher (O. matagalpae)
      • Thaeler´s Pocket Gopher (O. thaeleri)
      • Underwood´s Pocket Gopher (O. underwoodi)
    • Genus Pappogeomys; found in Mexico.
      • Alcorn´s Pocket Gopher (Pappogeomys alcorni)
      • Buller´s Pocket Gopher (P. bulleri)
    • Genus Thomomys - western pocket gophers; widely distributed in North America, extending into the northwestern US, Canada and the southeastern US.
      • Thomomys bottae; many subspecies, including the Botta's, Fish Spring, Bonneville, Clear Lake, San Antonio, Pistol River, Mount Ellen, Guadalupe, Limpia, Mearns', Stansbury Island, Antelope Island, Cebolleta, Salinas, Skull Valley, Swasey Springs, Harquahala and Limpia Greek Pocket Gophers.
      • Camas Pocket Gopher (T. bulbivorus)
      • Wyoming Pocket Gopher (T. clusius)
      • Idaho Pocket Gopher (T. idahoensis)
      • Mazama Pocket Gopher (T. mazama); several subspecies including the Western, Gold Beach, Olympic, and Tacoma Pocket Gophers.
      • Mountain Pocket Gopher (T. monticola)
      • Northern Pocket Gopher (T. talpoides); very widely distributed; several subspecies including the Cheyenne Northern Pocket Gopher
      • Townsend´s Pocket Gopher (T. townsendii)
      • Southern Pocket Gopher (T. umbrinus)
    • Genus Zygogeomys
      • Michoacan Pocket Gopher or Tuza (Zygogeomys trichopus)

Some sources also list a genus Hypogeomys, with one species, but this genus name is normally used for the Malagasy Giant Rat, which belongs to the family Nesomyidae. Pappogeomys is a genus of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Yellow-faced Pocket Gopher, Cratogeomys castanops, is a pocket gopher that is native to the shortgrass prairie in Southwestern North America and Northern Mexico. ... Binomial name (Merriam, 1892) The Smoky Pocket Gopher (Pappogeomys fumosus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Llano Pocket Gopher (Geomys texensis) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Merriam, 1902) The Querétaro Pocket Gopher (Pappogeomys neglectus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Merriam, 1895) The Naked-nosed Pocket Gopher (Pappogeomys tylorhinus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Species See text The genus Geomys contains nine species of pocket gophers often collectively referred to as the eastern pocket gophers. ... The Sierra Nevada (Spanish for Snowy Range) is a mountain range that is almost entirely in the eastern portion of the U.S. state of California. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Desert Pocket Gopher (Geomys arenarius) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Shaw, 1800) The Plains Pocket Gopher (Geomys bursarius) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name True, 1889 The Texas Pocket Gopher (Geomys personatus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Rafinesque, 1817) Subspecies Geomys pinetis austrinus Geomys pinetis colonus Geomys pinetis cumberlandius Geomys pinetis floridanus Geomys pinetis goffi Geomys pinetis fontanelus The Southeastern Pocket Gopher, Geomys pinetis, is the only pocket gopher in its range. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Llano Pocket Gopher (Geomys texensis) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Orthogeomys is a genus of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... For other uses, see Central America (disambiguation). ... Binomial name (Bangs, 1902) The Chiriqui Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys cavator) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Elliot, 1905 The Oaxacan Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys cuniculus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Goldman, 1912) The Darien Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys dariensis) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Thomas, 1893) The Giant Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys grandis) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Peters, 1865) The Variable Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys heterodus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Le Conte, 1852) The Hispid Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys hispidus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (Elliot, 1905) The Big Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys lanius) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name (J.A. Allen, 1910) The Nicaraguan Pocket Gopher (Orthogeomys matagalpae) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Pappogeomys is a genus of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Species Thomomys talpoides Thomomys idahoensis Thomomys clusius Thomomys mazama Thomomys monticola Thomomys bulbivorus Thomomys bottae Thomomys townsendii Thomomys umbrinus The smooth-toothed pocket gophers, genus Thomomys, are so called because they among the only pocket gophers without grooves on their incisors. ... North America North America is a continent[1] in the Earths northern hemisphere and (chiefly) western hemisphere. ... Binomial name Thomomys bottae (Eydoux and Gervais, 1836) Bottas pocket gopher (Thomomys bottae) is a pocket gopher native to western North America, from California east to Texas and from southern Utah and Colorado south to Mexico. ... Binomial name (Richardson, 1829) The Camas Pocket Gopher (Thomomys bulbivorus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Coues, 1875 The Wyoming Pocket Gopher (Thomomys clusius) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1901 The Idaho Pocket Gopher (Thomomys idahoensis) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Thomomys mazama Merriam, 1897 The Mazama Pocket Gopher, Thomomys mazama, is a smooth-toothed pocket gopher restricted to the Pacific Northwest. ... Trinomial name Thomomys mazama tacomensis Taylor, 1919 The Tacoma Pocket Gopher (Thomomys mazama tacomensis), was a subspecies of the Mazama Pocket Gopher that was restricted to a few isolated populations in the southern Puget Sound area and on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. ... Moutain Pocket Gophers originated in South East Africa. ... Binomial name Thomomys talpoides The Northern Pocket Gopher, Thomomys talpoides, was first discovered by Lewis and Clark on April 9, 1805 at the mouth of the Knife River, North Dakota. ... Binomial name (Richardson, 1829) The Southern Pocket Gopher (Thomomys umbrinus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Michoacan Pocket Gopher (Zygogeomys trichopus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name Merriam, 1895 The Michoacan Pocket Gopher (Zygogeomys trichopus) is a species of rodent in the Geomyidae family. ... Binomial name A. Grandidier, 1869 The Malagasy Giant Rat (Hypogeomys antimena), also known as the Votsovotsa, is a rodent found only in the Menabe region of Madagascar. ... Binomial name Hypogeomys antimena A. Grandidier, 1869 The Malagasy Giant Rat (Hypogeomys antimena), also known as the Votsovotsa, is a rodent found only in the Menabe region of Madagascar. ... Subfamilies see text Nesomyidae is a family of rodents in the large and complex superfamily Muroidea. ...


Pest Management

Image File history File links Broom_icon. ...

Gopher trapping

Gopher traps can be employed to kill them. These traps are very effective and need not be baited. To deploy the trap, a hole must be dug in a fresh gopher mound to uncover the tunnel. The cocked trap is inserted jaws-first so that the entire trap is within the tunnel, and then it is covered with dirt. The gopher will push against the trigger plate in order to reacquire access to the hole which has been blocked. In doing so, it will position its body directly above the jaws. When the jaws close, they will break the gopher's spine in the best case or merely maim the animal in the worst case. This method of gopher control is allowable in certified organic operations as there are no non-organic chemicals used. Mounds made by moles are different, with the dirt being more finely broken up, and gopher traps are ineffective against moles. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Bait is any substance used to attract prey, e. ... A disused railway tunnel now converted to pedestrian and bicycle use, near Houyet, Belgium A tunnel is an underground passage. ... Genera 17 genera, see text Moles are members of the family (Talpidae) of mammals in the order Soricomorpha that live underground, burrowing holes. ...


To make your traps more effective, realize that the mound is always set off a foot or two from the main run. Dig (or probe with a thin rod) until you locate the tunnel going in both directions; then put a trap in each hole. Cover with dirt, as above, and wait 24 hours. Gophers are very sensitive to light, and will fill in their tunnels and abandon them if they perceive any light, so it is important to cover all openings where light might come in after setting a trap. Placing a board larger than the hole over the opening and covering all edges around it with dirt will seal off light so that the gopher does not abandon the tunnel.


Gopher gas poisoning, poison baiting, concussion

Another non-organically certified, but more humane, method of gopher extermination is to inject toxic gases such as aluminum phosphide into the tunnels. The aluminum phosphide pellets react with moisture in the soil to produce phosphine gas (not phosgene) While this method has created controversy from aluminum phosphide being a federally registered pesticide with known hazards to human health, with proper safety precautions, this poison is easy to use, and causes no secondary poisoning of predators or carrion eaters as do some poison baits. The gophers die quickly underground. Aluminium phosphide (AlP) is a compound of aluminium and phosphorus. ... Phosgene (also known as carbonyl chloride, COCl2) is a highly toxic gas or refrigerated liquid that was used as a chemical weapon in World War I. It has no color, but is detectable in air by its odor, which resembles moldy hay. ...


Zinc phosphide bait is delivered in a compressed grain pellet. The phosphide creates phosphine gas in the gopher's stomach.


Gopher gassers and automotive type flares are sometimes used. They are ignited and placed in the burrows. The fumes kill the gopher.


Using a flexible steel pipe that fits over the exhaust pipe of a car is also effective in killing any nearby moles. Connect one end to the car and place the other end into a mole hole or open a tunnel and insert the pipe. Cover the insertion point with dirt to prevent the exhaust from leaking out around the pipe. Start the car and let it run for at least 30 minutes. The exhaust gas will follow the tunnels for quite a distance and kill any moles it reaches. Most tunnels are interconnected at deeper levels.


Poison baits require the gopher to eat the bait. They include barley, wheat, and milo grains, sometimes with raisins, coated with strychnine. The disadvantages of poisoned baits include the following: The gopher must find and eat the bait. If the bait molds or rots, the gopher won't eat it. If a gopher eats a non-lethal dose and just gets sick, it will never eat it again (bait shy). Strychnine poisoned gophers may wander above ground in an intoxicated stupor, making themselves easy targets for predators. Resulting secondary poisoning of pets and predators, including owls, would prove to be counterproductive. A loss of predators means more gophers. Hence, these baits must be used with extreme caution. Strychnine (pronounced (British, U.S.), or (U.S.)) is a very toxic (LD50 = 10 mg approx. ...


A concussion method kills gophers instantly with a shock wave. Specialized equipment used by trained operators wearing personal protective equipment injects a mixture of propane and oxygen into the gopher burrow. An igniter on the end of the injection probe explodes the fuel mixture, destroying not only the gophers, but the burrows as well. This method is obviously not suited for urban residential areas, but rather to agricultural situations. The destruction of the burrows by this method prevents loss of irrigation water, prevents injury from collapse of the burrow underfoot (human, equine, etc.), and may make any re-infestation more quickly noticeable. Killing animals with explosives is illegal in some jurisdictions, such as the State of Colorado, USA.


References

  1. ^ Macdonald (Ed), Professor David W. (2006). The Encyclopedia of Mammals. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-920608-2. 

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Urban IPM: Vertebrates: Rodents: Pocket Gophers (2830 words)
Pocket gophers are thick bodied rodents five to seven inches long with a short sparsely haired tail, wide head, very small eyes and ears, strongly clawed front feet which are well suited for digging.
Pocket gophers are found throughout Arizona in any most any habitat in which sufficient amounts of tuberous roots and other plant material are available and the soil is suitable for digging tunnels.
Pocket gophers are strict herbivores and feed on plant roots from their runways, venture a short distance from the runway entrance to feed on or drag vegetation back into the runway and will pull vegetation into their runway from below.
Gofer control and Gofer animal facts (3192 words)
Pocket gophers are fossorial (burrowing) rodents, so named because they have fur-lined pouches outside of the mouth, one on each side of the face.
Pocket gophers are powerfully built in the forequarters and have a short neck; the head is fairly small and flattened.
Pocket gophers feed on plants in three ways: 1) they feed on roots that they encounter when digging; 2) they may go to the surface, venturing only a body length or so from their tunnel opening to feed on aboveground vegetation; and 3) they pull vegetation into their tunnel from below.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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