Saturday, July 27, 2019

A Pocket Gopher and pretty bird!


It's so much fun to get out in nature and I love taking you along!


Let's drive over to the Pruitt Trailhead of the Florida Trails in my hubby's Subaru Outback and park in the grass. We love this car and even the commercials on TV are neat. Maybe they'll want to film me on one of my adventures in the 'outback' of Florida! lol


If you live in Florida, you'll notice these mounds of dirt along the side of the highways and roads. They are everywhere! 


 But it's a rare sighting to actually see what's making the mounds!


A Pocket Gopher!

My husband did some research on them so I'll steal borrow what he wrote. I know he won't mind. After all, he lets me drive his Outback down white sand roads! 

"If you are new to North Central Florida you may be surprised to see all the little mounds of dirt along the roadways and across some yards as you drive around the area. Most people think they're ant hills but they're not. It's the work of a little tunneling rodent, the Pocket Gopher.
The "pocket" in their name refers to two fur-lined cheek pockets or pouches, which have external openings on either side of the mouth. The pouches are used to transport food and nest material. At only 10-12 inches long from nose to tip of tail they are capable of digging tunnel systems that may extend for 500 feet, although 145 feet is the norm, with dirt mounds every 6-10 feet.

As they dig, they push piles of loose dirt above ground. Their shallow tunnels run parallel to the surface providing access to their diet of roots and tubers. Nest and food storage tunnels are deeper. They will plug tunnel openings to prevent snakes and other predators from entering. Pocket gophers are solitary animals and do not share a tunnel system."


I took 2 short videos!


I hope you enjoy them!

After taking photos and videos of the Pocket Gopher, I walked over to this fence and saw an Eastern Meadowlark singing his heart out. 


 I took a few pics of course.


 And he stayed longer than I expected.


 He has such a beautiful song to sing!


But the video above is from an encounter very near here awhile back.

Have you had a good week, too?

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE  

  and I’d Rather B Birdin’.
   
   

30 comments:

Tom said...

...Gophers can be such a pain, my son is trapping them in his yard. That Meadowlark sure has a big mouth for a little critter!

Ann said...

What a beautiful place for a hike. Looks like you pretty much had the place to yourself too.
Interesting about the pocket gophers. The meadowlarks song is pretty.

Sandra said...

I have never seen or heard of the pocket gopher, he is so cute. I may have seen the dirt piles but don't remember if I did. I imagine farmers are not fond of them.. or people with nice grass either, but looking at him digging made me laugh. I have heard the lark but did not know what it was. he sure is singing his heart out. my friend has an outback and she says it is her most favorite of all cars she has owned.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Pocket Gophers and Eastern Meadowlarks in one day are enough to wind up the heart rate of any dedicated naturalist!

Vee said...

good capture of the little bulldozer...are they considered a nuisance or are they accepted? I’d be profoundly upset if they were doing that to my lawn. I had to go to You Tube to hear the meadowlark...a very nice song!

Terri D said...

Thanks for sharing the beauty and song! I love taking walks with you! :)

eileeninmd said...

Hello,

Thanks for taking me along on your walk. I love the cute videos of the Pocket Gopher. I have never heard of these cute critters. Awesome sighting of the Meadowlark, they are one of my favorite birds. I enjoyed all the photos and the videos, well done. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend! PS, thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog.

SImple and Serene Living said...

I love going on your walks with you. So many interesting things to see. xo Laura

Bob Bushell said...

Pretty pretty the Pocket Gopher, love them.

bill burke said...

The gopher is a hard worker digging up all that dirt. Great videos and the impressive singer you captured during a performance is absolutely gorgeous. Thanks for sharing and have a lovely weekend. I really enjoy your posts and videos, they're nice to see.

Cloudia said...

oh thank YOU!

Hootin' Anni said...

Yes, yes. I don't live in FL., but I have seen pocket gophers. And love the meadowlark singing for us.

Thanks for visiting with me and bunnies. AND linking in with us at I'd Rather B Birdin' today.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Showed Bill your great videos ... and now we are arguing about whether pocket gophers in Florida are the same gophers we have here in Oregon ... In Florida, we knew those piles of dirt were from gophers but didn’t know they were *pocket* gophers. Now we don’t know if we have different gophers or the same kind here. Off to let Wiki or Google settle our argument! Thanks (to both of you) for the great research and videos ... and for keeping the old folks busy ))!

QUILTING IS BLISSFUL, DI said...

How fun was that to watch--
the chipmunks here make tunnels like that and pile the dirt and rocks up--
funny to see the dirt/rock pile grow each day--they are all busy little critters--
and that is a pretty bird ---
luv, di

Rose said...

Those pocket gophers look like they could make a real mess of a yard...and I wonder if they are this far north. Hope I can remember to look this up because one year our yard had a lot of mounds but I am not sure it was loose dirt. Been so long ago I cannot remember.

Love your Meadowlark photos...I cannot get close enough to even think of snapping a photo. The meadowlarks at home were not that wild...the ones at the strip pits are so shy.

Susie said...

You get to see the nicest things. LOL. Little gophers and the meadow lark. Glad you are getting out and about. Blessings to you, xoxo,love, Susie

happyone said...

What a great picture of the meadowlark. He sure looks like he enjoys singing!!

Small City Scenes said...

Wow that Meadowlark sure is singing his heart out. Wonderful. I don't know if pocket gophers are out this way but mounds in our yards and down the roads means MOLES! My daughter's dog is good at catching them.
MB

Rhodesia said...

We have mounds of earth all over but ours are caused by moles!!! Love the meadowlark. Have a good week, Diane

Phil Slade said...

And there was me thinking the pocket referred to being able to fit one in your jacket pocket! I always fancied a Subaru so you beat me too it. Loved the video and the song of the meadowlark.

carol l mckenna said...

Love post and photography of your 'hike.' ~ Love the little bird in the last photos! ^_^

Happy Day to you,
A ShutterBug Explores,
aka (A Creative Harbor)

Debbie said...

hi diane, the Pocket Gopher is very cool, i have never seen one here or noticed those mounds of dirt when we visited central florida!! i don't think i have ever heard that name either!! i watched the video's, they are certainly determined and kind of cute!!

the Eastern Meadowlark is certainly more beautiful, and what a beautiful song it sings!! i don't think i have ever seen that bird before...i enjoyed the video on youtube!! enjoy the remainder of today and the new week ahead!!

ps...i am a little behind with my visits. we attended a balloon festival yesterday and i was exhausted when we returned home but had a few more things we had to/needed to do!!!

Debbie said...

This is interesting...we just watched a special on TV about Prairie Dogs and how they are relocating them, because they are threatened with becoming eradicated in a small Texas town. You see the neatest things out on your walks! Thank you for sharing with the rest of us. Enjoy your evening. Debbie xo

NanaDiana said...

Those gophers are cute but can make a mess of a yard in short order. lol I loved the picture of the yellow bird-how pretty!!! I couldn't get your video to play though.

Have a wonderful week, Diane. xo Diana

Nancy Chan said...

I haven't seen a gopher before and I am glad we don't have them. We do have rats and mice. Initially, I thought heap was a cow dung. Lol! Cute yellow bird.

podso said...

Wow that meadowlark seems to be singing his heart out. Interesting about the pocket gophers. I learned something new and will look for these when we are next in Florida. No more wondering what they are about!

Diane Writes said...

What a sight to see! This is what I always look forward in your blog namemate. :) Thank you for visiting me

Red Rose Alley said...

That bird is beautiful, and looks so regal. It looks like he's posing just for you. His song must have been a joy to hear. Oh, that little gopher is a mischievous one. : ) The skies are incredible - that's the first thing I noticed in the first two pictures.

~Sheri

Jeanie said...

I've never heard of a pocket gopher. Or seen a meadowlark, for that matter! Now I have -- at least virtually!

Lowcarb team member said...

I'd not heard of a pocket gopher, so thanks for sharing the information, pictures and videos.

All the best Jan