Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.
Hurlburt was in just the right place and had just the right skills to do it. He had grown hay, potatoes, grain and hogs, so he knew that a gopher infestation could break a farmer’s bank account and his mind. And Hurlburt’s other jobs — in journalism, timber and manufacturing — gave him experience necessary to turn an idea into an invention that would fight a scourge of ranchers and farmers.
“This machine is an elegant solution and efficient,” Hurlburt said. “It kills the gopher quickly and humanely. And there is no poison bait, and no explosions.”
PERC is automated for use in the field — the operator simply
probes and turns it on. When the tank reaches full pressure, the
sensor valve idles the clutch and turns off the pressurized gas. A
single operator using the PERC system can treat 3.5 acres of
moderately infested alfalfa fields in an hour.
“I like (the PERC) because it takes out the little gophers,
too,” Van Surksum said. “It is the safest and most effective way
to control gophers. With traps and poison, I couldn’t keep ahead
Hurlburt is now a cancer survivor, and his heart is beating
fine. He is often seen either in his shop or on a little
four-wheeler, with a big smile and a hint of glee as he pulls a
machine with coils and red hoses down the road to his next field
Page Updated: Thursday May 07, 2009 09:14 AM Pacific
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