gopher mounds

Asked November 8, 2016, 7:20 AM EST

When I trap gopher I rake all the mounds level to the ground so that the hay will crow back again. My son thinks it will destroy more hay. Who is right?

Delaware County Iowa pastures and grazing pastures and forages hay production

1 Response

Once the gopher problem is eliminated, leveling the mounds is fine. The issue is depth of soil deposit over what kind of forage species. For short grasses like Kentucky bluegrass, do not rake more than 1/2 inch of soil over the plants. In home lawns, reports of more than 1/4 to 1/2 inch depth of soil cover has caused some problems. For forbs like alfalfa, try to not exceed one inch depth of soil over the plants, although reports have shown alfalfa recovering from as much as 1.5 to 2-inch silt covered depths following flooding. FYI, general tips on gopher control are available in the following ISU Extension publication https://store.extension.iastate.edu/Product/Pocket-Gophers-Managing-Iowa-Wildlife