“Here comes the colonel with his sergeant,
“Both are a-roarin’ and a-chargin’.
“Go go gophers, watch them go go go.”
When the Gopher Indians began to appear on “The Underdog Show” back in 1966, kids, and more than a few adults, were tickled by the lampooning of the traditional Indian and Cavalry movies.
But in Salina they aren’t finding gophers all that funny and the issues there point to the very real challenges that continue to face people throughout the West in the control of some burrowing wild animals.
In the case of Salina, it really is gophers.
They have a developing problem with the rodents burrowing into the 21-mile flood control levee and the city, as well as the Corps of Engineers, are concerned that the burrows, if not controlled, could cause damage and weaken the city’s flood protection.
The city has killed almost 400 of the rodents over the past few years and are still faced with more damage.
Throughout the West you can see similar problems with prairie dogs, that cause significant erosion when they infest an area.
In some instances these animals locate in a rural setting where the main threat is to wildlife.
Even then, they can cause a lot of damage.
For those who only see them in a zoo setting, they seem like cute, interesting creatures.
But in the real world, they cause a lot of damage, whether they are appealing to those who aren’t impacted or not.
There is a reason they often have to be kept under control, and the situation is Salina is a perfect example.
— Chuck Smith