Ground squirrels, locally called gophers, are considered pests by farmers and ranchers because of the hundreds (seems like thousands) of hazardous holes they dig. This Saturday, May 9th, in Choteau, MT there will be a gopher shooting contest sponsored by Wings and Wild Things in an effort to keep the gopher population from causing more harm.
The contest starts at 9am Saturday in Choteau. Hunters need to check in with Wings and Wild Things gun shop on Main Street or call 406-466-5990. Teams need to be back at the gun shop by 4pm. For hunters arriving back late at the end of day, they are docked one gopher for every minute they are late.
Door prizes, cash prizes, an evening barbecue and a raffle to support youth hunting will round out this unique day. Wings and Wild Things owner Jim Anderson said he heard a few protests about the contest in years past but he explained that it is part of the prairie culture. Last year, hunters helped eliminate 2,390 gophers from farmer’s and rancher’s fields.