Great Falls Parks and Recreation is currently working on ground squirrel control, more commonly known as gophers, due to an increase in population.

They released the following in a press release:

The population of Richardson Ground Squirrels (gophers) varies from year to year. This year, the gopher population has increased and they are damaging park areas and compromising the integrity of detention ponds located in City parks. Therefore, Park and Recreation staff will be implementing control measures in numerous parks to manage the overpopulation.

Our pest control program was carefully considered and will be regularly monitored. Proper control techniques are required to achieve satisfactory management of the gophers with an awareness of potential problems. Frequent monitoring of the treatment sites will be required.

For the safety of your pets and in accordance with City Ordinance (Park Rules and Regulations), please keep pets on a leash at all times. In addition, please do not disturb the trap stations.

Ground squirrels are not the only thing that has grown in population this summer. Snakes have been coming out in full force, and Jeremy Jay Allestad with Montana Reptile Rescue says he pulled 27 rattlesnakes so far out of Eagles Crossing. 

"The problem is with gophers and other things such as mice and other things being more prominent," Allestad said. "You have more of a food source. So there is more activity in those areas because of that."

Allestad said if you come across a rattlesnake give him a call at 750-8663.

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