I enjoyed reading about methods to eliminate the much hated gophers I deal with at my home on beautiful Padre Island. I have tried several of the products you mentioned and quite a few methods you didn't mention. But I have a couple of questions.
I have three chihuahuas that live indoors but use my back yard as their "bathroom" and this is where I'm trying to drive off the gophers. Will coyote urine frighten my dogs, as well as the gophers, so they won't want to go outside?
Also, regarding gopher bait. I feel confident I can get a product so deep in the gopher burrows that it won't affect my dogs; HOWEVER, once when I buried hundreds of moth balls the gophers tossed them back out in my yard! Therefore, the gopher bait, I'm thinking, would be lethal to my dogs, correct?
To no avail, I've tried (in addition to moth balls), the sonic sound repellers, cat litter box discards, gas bombs, BB gun, whirlygigs (work the best to get the gopher to move on but not far enough!), and the popcorn poison in my front yard away from my dogs.
Thanks so much for your help.
COYOTE URINE is an odor which will scare away prey animals. As our GOPHER CONTROL ARTICLE explains, we've seen where the urine can be used to deter foraging and new gopher activity. However, it doesn't do nearly as good of a job at chasing away existing gophers because the gophers already have a home and in most cases will be reluctant to leave. So use the urine only after you rid yourself of the current activity and animals now living in the turf.
As for pets; they will percieve the urine as just another animal scent. Most domesticated dogs don't fear any animal because they're not wild anymore and do not have to deal with the day to day threat of being hunted by some larger prey animal. As far as they know, the coyote urine is just another animal pee they will commonly find anytime they go outside.
Regarding bait; you are dead on correct to be concerned about your pet ingesting some. This is always a possibility when baits are used around non target animals. In fact, this is such a concern, the use of bait is about to become very restricted. This is being done because in general people are both careless and the impact on non target animals has been too significant to not do anything. Expect to see loose bait all but removed from the market place over the next few years.
Combine the risk of your pets ingesting some bait with the fact that gophers will "discharge" most anything put in their tunnels and you have just one more reason to employ the obvious and what we feel is the best solution for any active gopher problem: LIVE TRAPS. These devices are both easy to use and highly effective on gophers. They're also very safe and the most cost effective method out there.
And once you trap out the ones currently active you can move to the repellents which again, only really work at keeping away new animals looking to set up a home. So your experience with all the repellents you listed is no surprise to us; we know they won't work at chasing existing animals away. Use the live or kill traps for that process and the repellents to keep anymore from coming around.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Coyote Urine: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page732.html
Gopher Control: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page731.html