Sage Rats Are Out

fishnhunt

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Went out for a couple of hours this weekend and managed to kill ~70 with my .22 in just over 2 hours, the babies are out and they are prolific. Add this to the 90-100 I killed last weekend and I will be ready to shoot those pesky deer this fall. I was averaging about 75% shot to kill ratio and hope it will go up when I get my new stock and bull barrell for my .22 this week. This activity provides many, many hours of entertainment for me......
 



ranchwife

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Is this a new species? What is a sage rat? Ground squirrel?
 

Orygun

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Ranchwife,

They are Belding Ground Squirrel. Beechey Ground squirrels are the ones with the bushier tails. Though you may have the Richardson Ground Squirrel at your place. It is slightly different in color than the Belding.

Sage rat is a Oregon/Washington term for them. They are the ones that eat up all the alfalfa and tear up pastures. and of course are found in the sage.

I have a friend who makes 2-3 5-hour drives to the Burns area each spring just to go shoot them. He runs through a brick a weekend when things are really hopping.

Used to be farmers would beg folks to come help them control the squirrels. It's become so popular and with all the idiots out there ruining things access is of course difficult. So now, unless you own, lease, are related or friends with to someone who owns or leases alfalfa circles, it's hard to do anymore without an access fee. Unless you want to pay for a guided rat shoot.

But that is what is great about this country. Farmers are getting people to pay them for the opportunity to do pest control for them. Weird thing is that even if you kill a hundred they all disappear. What the yotes and other scavengers don't eat the squirrel's buddies drag em down into the burrows for a snack.
 

ranchwife

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Thanks for the clarification. We have the Belding also. I've done my fair share of reducing the population of them on our ranch this year. If I can ever get time to make it out, I'm anxious to start in on the little, stupid, ones now that they are up. I love shooting them anc watching the hawks and eagles come into clean up my messes!!
 

barel74

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you mean you're poisoning the hawks and eagles with lead

how could you do such a thing
 

ranchwife

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It is quite simple: load gun, aim, pull trigger, ring dinner bell!
 

fishnhunt

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Sorry for the confusion about the names....Yes they are all beldings ground squirrels....And the little ones are out in force....As far as pics I didn't take any....I just let them lay, I am not one of those people who pick them up and line them out....
 

DEERSLAM

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You don't have to touch em...just take a few pics of the carnage for us less fortunate.
 

fishnhunt

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Will do so next time....There was some pretty good piles over some of the holes.....Them little ones love to eat the dead
 


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