Top 5 Best Gopher Baits (**2021 Review**)

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Home > Product Reviews > Gopher Products > Top 5 Best Gopher Baits (**2021 Review**)

If you’re looking for the best gopher baits, you’ve come to the right place!

Pest Strategies is here to help solve your gopher problems!

In this product review you can expect to learn:

  • Our top picks for gopher baits
  • What gophers eat, which tells you . . .
  • Where you’ll find them
  • How to use gopher bait for maximum effect

If you want to reliably get rid of gophers, baits can help you out, and we have the answers you’re looking for.

Ready to get started?

Reviewed By:
Ed Spicer

Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He manages Pest Strategies now helping homeowners around the world!

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Motomco Gopher Killer

  • Strong bait attractant
  • Kills gophers within a few hours
  • EPA-approved

Kaput Pocket Gopher Bait

  • Comes in the "pellet" shape
  • Requires you to dig a hole and apply bait

Monterey Gopher Bait

  • Works well for both moles and gophers
  • Granular bait more effective than pellets
  • Faster-acting than some other competitor's baits

Ramik Mole & Gopher Bait

  • Strong formula
  • Weather-resistant
  • Highly palatable attractant

Victor Gopher Poison Peanuts

  • Highly palatable to both gophers and moles
  • Easy to use and store
  • Quickly kills gophers and moles

Table Of Contents

    Top 5 Best Gopher Baits

    Short on time or just want a quick answer?

    Check out our below list for a summary of our results. Keep on reading to learn more about baits and gophers!

    1. Motomco Gopher Killer
    2. Kaput Pocket Gopher Bait
    3. Monterey Gopher Bait
    4. Ramik Mole & Gopher Bait
    5. Victor Gopher Poison Peanuts

    What are gopher baits?

    Simply put, gopher baits are poisons camouflaged as food. They smell like food. They taste like food. So the gopher thinks they are food, and eats them. Then the poison hidden inside kills them.

    Some gopher baits come in a granular form while others are shaped like block or bricks. The physical form is more or less irrelevant to the gophers. As long as they think it’s food, they’ll eat it.

    What do gophers eat?

    Gophers are herbivores.

    They mainly eat roots of various kinds. They eat the roots of trees, grass, alfalfa, dandelions, tubers, and bulbs.

    They can also eat leaves and some insects. If you see a dead patch of grass in the middle of the yard, there may be a gopher eating the roots of it.

    This means your flower beds and garden are the areas they’re looking for. Grassroots are fine, but like any animal, they want the easiest food first.

    Many times the first evidence you’ll have is when your flower beds are torn up or the plants in it start dying for no reason. The same thing can happen in your garden.

    Look for some gopher mounds in the area and you’ll find the culprit.

    Read Also: What’s the top trap for gopher removal?

    How does gopher bait work?

    As we mentioned earlier gopher baits combine an attractant (i.e., something that smells or tastes like food) with a poison. Ground up corn or beans can be used as the attractant.

    There are three main active ingredients used in gopher bait that you should be aware of.

    Let’s look at each one.

    Strychine in baits

    First is strychnine, a neurotoxin that used to be widespread but is being phased out. When ingested or inhaled, it causes muscular convulsions and eventually death through asphyxiation.

    The animal can’t breathe and suffocates. None of the gopher baits on our list use it.

    Zinc phosphide in baits

    Next is zinc phosphide. It reacts with water and acid in the stomach to produce phosphine gas.

    The signs of phosphine poisoning can include vomiting, deep or wheezy breathing, weakness, loss of coordination, and convulsions. The animal dies soon after.

    Diphacinone in baits

    Finally, there is the newest one, diphacinone.

    This is a first generation anticoagulant that inhibits the enzymes involved in blood clotting, which then causes internal hemorrhaging leading to death.

    Animals given lethal doses exhibited labored breathing, muscular weakness, excitability, fluid in the lungs, and irregular heartbeats.

    They also exhibit blood loss around the eyes, mouth, and nose.

    Take a look at the below video to get a sense of how to apply gopher baits successfully.

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    How do you choose the best gopher bait?

    Make sure it contains a good attractant.If the gopher isn’t attracted to the bait or lured by the smell or taste, he won’t eat it. It has to smell like food.

    Only use baits that have a history of success. Just because there’s a new bait on the market doesn’t mean it’s the best, or that it even works.

    Why should you be the beta-tester for the manufacturer? Let someone else have that role. Stick to the baits with a proven track record.

    Another determinant is how much of a bait is required to kill the gopher. Once the animal is attracted to the bait, it should only take a few bites for him to ingest a fatal dose.

    If it takes more than that, it tells you the active ingredient has been diluted too much. The animal will get sick without dying, then develop a bait aversion to that active ingredient anytime it encounters it in the future.

    Finally, how long does it take the gopher to die once it’s ingested a lethal dose?

    Ideally, it shouldn’t take more than a day or so. If it takes much more than a day for the animal to die, you’re looking at another bad formulation.

    Read More: Can you use repellent to keep gophers away?

    Is gopher bait safe for pets and children?


    Gopher bait is poisonous.

    It’s never safe around pets and children.

    If one of your pets or children eats some gopher back get them to a hospital immediately. Depending on the type of active ingredient, the packing may tell you to induce vomiting but don’t wait.

    Get them to the hospital!

    • To avoid a panic-inducing trip to the ER, store gopher bait where pets and children can’t get to it, preferably in a locking drawer or cabinet high off the ground.
    • Keep them away from the area being treated.
    • Fence the area off if possible.
    • Otherwise, keep your pets on a leash away from the treated area and make sure your children avoid it too.

    What are the advantages of gopher bait?

    Gopher traps kill gophers. If you’re using traps you’ll have to handle their dead bodies when you remove them from the traps.

    Since these are wild animals we’re talking about, they could be carrying lice, fleas, or mites. They could be covered in excrement. Depending on how the trap killed them, they could be very bloody.

    Bait keeps you away from all that.

    The traps themselves will almost always have hair, skin, fecal, matter, or bodily fluid on them after catching and killing a gopher. You’ll have to clean the trap after each use, requiring you to handle all those things on the trap.

    Bait protects you from that as well.

    Finally, any unused poison will remain in the tunnels beneath your yard, acting as a long-term deterrent to any future invaders.

    If a foraging gopher comes your way he’ll want to re-use the existing tunnels, where he’ll encounter any leftover bait. He’s foraging because he’s hungry so he’ll eat it and die, perhaps before you even know a new gopher is in the area.

    Where in your yard should you apply gopher bait?

    You need to bait inside the gopher’s tunnel about 18-24 inches from the main opening in the mound. In order to bait you need to know which direction the tunnel is going.

    Probe inside the mound opening to figure out which way the gopher dug.

    An easy place to start is by looking at the mound itself. It’s generally a rough horseshoe shape.

    As the gopher digs into the ground he pushed the dirt up behind him, creating the semi-circle shape. The “open” end of the shape is almost always the direction the tunnel is headed.

    How do you apply a granular bait?

    You’ll need a long stick of some kind to poke a hole down into the tunnel (a piece of rebar works great). Pour the granules down the hole into the tunnel, then cover the hole back up.

    Also, cover the opening to the tunnel itself. This will prompt Mister Gopher to come to investigate and try to re-open it. In the process, he’ll discover the bait.

    If you have a bait applicator like this one, this one, or this one you can use the long rod on them to make the hole into the tunnel, then deposit the bait through the applicator.

    Again, cover the hole you just made as well as the main opening to the tunnel.

    How do you apply a block bait?

    The first, and easiest way, to bait the mound is to shove a piece of bait as far into the mound as you can. Use a stick, or piece of rebar, to shove it back in there. Then cover the opening in the mound.

    The second way will require a shovel. Blocks are usually too big to shove down a hole in the ground so you’ll need to dig down to the gopher’s tunnel to put the bait block in it.

    Once again, cover up the hole you just made as well as the main opening in the mound.

    Should you treat every mound?


    Gophers are solitary creatures except during mating season, but here can be as many as 60 of them in a single acre of land.

    You need to bait every mound, whether it looks old or new. It’s the only way to be sure.

    Gopher Baits Reviewed

    Below are the 5 baits we reviewed in our assessment. Take a look below for a write-up on each!

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    Motomco Gopher Killer

    This powerful gopher bait from Motomco combines a highly palatable attractant with a strong, active ingredient. The result is superior performance compared to other bait formulations.

    Used strictly for pocket gophers, Motomco Gopher killer features 2 percent zinc phosphide. This formidable substance kills gophers within just a few hours. It’s EPA-approved for yards, gardens, and a variety of landscapes.

    Motomco Gopher Killer is simple to use. Just place some into the entrance hole, then cover over with dirt. There are no special tools required.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Strong bait attractant
    • Kills gophers within a few hours
    • EPA-approved
    • Easy to apply
    • Only works on gophers
    Overall Rating

    Kaput Gopher Bait

    This is another bait that uses diphacinone as the active ingredient. This one is formulated as pellets (not blocks).

    You’ll need to make a hole in the ground to pour the pellets into, or use an applicator. The gophers seem to like it reasonably well and once they eat it they’re a goner.

    This comes in a big bucket but you only need a few ounces for each hole. This will cover a very wide area. Bait each hole, wait a few days then bait them again.

    After that, you should be home free.

    The Good And The Bad

    • First generation anticoagulant
    • Long lasting
    • Requires digging or an applicator

    Monterey Gopher Bait

    This quick-acting gopher bait from Monterey has a grain attractant to entice both gophers and moles. And there’s no equipment needed. Just dig a small opening to the pest entrance hole, and shake some bait into the opening.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Works well for both moles and gophers
    • Granular bait more effective than pellets
    • Faster-acting than some other competitor's baits
    • Easy-to-use container
    • The container comes only half full

    Ramik Mole & Gopher Bait

    Neogen’s Ramik Mole & Gopher Bait is a weather-resistant bait that contains the powerful active ingredient diphacinone. It’s wax-free, so the target pest is less likely to reject it. And it contains a maximum attractant grain formula so that even the pickiest gophers will like it.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Strong formula
    • Weather-resistant
    • Highly palatable attractant
    • Comes in a convenient 16 oz. bottle
    • Works best for gophers and moles but not for mice and rats
    • Not available in all states
    • Product may settle during shipping or may clump together in extreme humidity

    Victor Gopher Poison Peanuts

    These handy gopher poison peanuts from Victor come in a handy container that kills both gophers and moles. The highly attractive bait lures the rodent into eating just enough to kill it quickly.

    The cone-tipped design makes it easy to punch through a tunnel. Once in place, the attractant does its job to lure the gopher. Then, the powerful active ingredient dispatches the animal quickly, leaving your yard gopher-free.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Highly palatable to both gophers and moles
    • Easy to use and store
    • Quickly kills gophers and moles
    • Specially designed packaging to aid in product dispensing
    • Not safe to use around children and pets
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