The Easiest & Fastest Way to Kill Gophers

Alexis Writing

Gophers can be a big problem for homeowners, causing unsightly mounds in your lawn and killing plants. They can also be persistent and difficult to get rid of. There are some methods of eliminating gophers, however, that can allow you to get your garden and yard back.


Traps can be effective, but to use one properly, you need to find the main runway tunnel. This will be 4 to 10 inches below the surface. Find a tunnel leading to a mound and follow it back to the main tunnel. If you can’t see a tunnel, use a metal rod or screwdriver to poke the ground around the flat side of a mound. Usually the tunnels are at an angle to the main tunnel. Since you don’t know from what direction the gopher will approach the trap, you need to use two traps.


Using poison bait has always been an effective way to get rid of gophers. All you have to do is buy some poison and put it out where gophers go. The drawback to poison is that it can also poison other things like the family pet because it is made with strychnine. If you choose to poison the gopher, consider using a type of poison that is less harmful to pets--one made with zinc phosphide.

Dry Ice

Dry ice can be a fast, effective gopher killer. To use this, you will need a shovel, heavy gloves, eye protection, a hammer, chisel and small chunks of dry ice. To get started, mark each gopher hole in your yard with landscaping flags or something similar. Using the gloves, pick up the chunk of dry ice and use a hammer and chisel to break it into chunks. Place a chunk in each gopher hole as far down as you can reach. Immediately fill in the hole with dirt. Repeat this with all of the gopher holes as fast as you can or get someone to help you so the application will be fast. Dry ice breaks down into carbon dioxide, and the gas will sink into the holes to cut off the gophers' oxygen supply.

Hire a Professional

Hiring a professional exterminator eliminates the need for you to handle dry ice and poison or set traps. While this is the easiest method, it is also expensive. To determine if you need professional help, think about the scope of your problem. If you are absolutely overrun with gophers or have an open field close by, a professional may be necessary. A neighbor with an infested lawn also adds to your problem. If you hire a professional, make sure the person you hire has the proper training and experience to handle gophers, as eliminating these pests is not the same as getting rid of insects. Be sure to ask what kind of guarantee they offer.