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3-1-10...This is a California Ground Squirrel, commonly called a "Gray Digger" here. They are found only in the Pacific Northwest, primarily California, Western Oregon & a small portion of South-Central Washington. While they are cute, they are very destructive rodents. They dig extensive tunneling burrows, 5-30 feet in length & 2-4 feet below the ground's surface in gentle sloping hillsides, ditch banks & fields. A farmer/rancher's nightmare, because the burrows/tunnels can make the ground collapse under farm machinery causing expensive repairs or injuries to the farmer. And they eat the tender green shoots of new crops. The rancher's livestock can step in their holes & break a leg. There is an "open" season on them, eradication is by any means available. [P3017829]