Patty is going to have to change her limerick. I had a conversation today with the deputy in charge of the grounds and it appears our pests are not gophers.
“No,” Deputy Ayala says, “these are not gophers, they’re ground squirrels”.
“How can you tell?” I ask.
“Because when it pops up and you see a ground squirrel, it’s a ground squirrel, and when you see a gopher, it’s a gopher.”
Honest to God, that was his word for word answer.
“Well, how do you know we have ground squirrels?”
“Because I saw a ground squirrel”.
I was curious how Ayala was going to approach the gradual disintegration of our property since these critters seemed to be taking over the place. Indeed, the perimeter patrol deputy reported near injury stepping into one of these guy's holes.
“We don’t exactly have a policy and procedure for this. Truthfully, I’d just like to bring in my .22 and take care of this”.
He wondered why weren’t the cats taking care of this problem. I asked whether he had taken a look at the jail cats lately. Chasing squirrels for dinner is low on the priority list for fat cats.
Later in the day another deputy commented the ground squirrels weren’t as bad as the dozen skunks that took up residence on grounds five years ago. Apparently they were aggressive and confrontational with the perimeter patrol. "The place was pretty smelly for a while."
Like any good Googler these days, I checked online to see what these guys look like and some interesting information came up. Not only are they hard to get rid of, seems they nest and reproduce in their tunnels in the spring. I think we have a problem.