Saturday, March 5, 2011

gopher-rescuing gardener.... (and check out the PS!)

Early this cold morning, the cats, then Bear, then I saw this:

Don't know what was wrong with the little guy, but was pretty much in face-plant mode, barely able to ambulate, tho' he could move a little now and then, and I could see his sides move with his breath.

Just took a few super fast shots, then ran back in the house for gloves, a small cloth, and then picked him up and plunked him into a gopher hole--seemed grateful to descend back into the underground--most I'd seen him move the whole time. Glad it was downhill.

The pattern on his back made it look like he was about 2/3 of the way through getting his summer coat (shorter hair, glossy, on the back and head), shedding his warmer coat (longer hair on the perimeter (legs, bum), dull fur). I wonder if hypothermia is a greater risk while one is transitioning from winter to summer coat?

Objection, your honor, speculation!


Anyhow, I'm not sure what percentage of gardeners try (at least in a minimal way re: nature interference) to rescue gophers, but first and foremost, I'm a conservation biologist. =) And a total softy.

Sucks to be cold. I hope he's curled up now, under the covers, with a big mug of hot cocoa. =)


P.S. EXCITING POST SCRIPT! I was JUST on the phone with a friend (5 p.m.) and looking out the window where I'd relocated that gopher and saw a gopher peek his head out of his hole (rare event!!), looking all cute and buck-toothed. So, of course I hoped it was my rescue-ee.

WELL, a few minutes later for the FIRST TIME EVER saw TWO GOPHERS AT ONCE. Both within 4 feet of the hole where I'd plunked the cold pup. So I am now quite convinced that Mr. and Mrs. Gopher are reunited and enjoying the warm, sunny spell we had this afternoon.

How about that for Gopher Karma? See 2 gophers at once for the first time ever, TODAY. So happy. =)


  1. Aw, poor little fella! There's the first good deed done for the day.

    No real burrowers here, but the long-nosed bandicoots are enthusiastic diggers.

  2. I don't like to put a dampener on things but could your first ever multiple gopher sighting be the burrow-owner evicting your plunked pup?
    (Sorry, I'm in a cynical mood.)

  3. =) They were both just popping their heads above ground eating grass and looking around, soo didn't seem strife-ridden, but of course they could be celebrating after some heinous-"we-killed-Uncle-Bob" ritual, but I choose to believe it's a happy couple. =)

  4. And I must say, @ Snail: I just love the sound of long-nosed bandicoot. So fun to hear from other parts of the world. =)


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