A large population of gophers has taken up residence at the dike in Plum Coulee.

Reeve for the Municipality of Rhineland, Don Wiebe, said so-called invasion is believed to have compromised the integrity of the berm.

"I don't have a good answer for it but it seems unusual," he added. "Not exactly sure what causes that or why they migrated to that point, I don't know but they're there."

He added that exterminators have been hired to rectify the situation and will be using gopher poison along the dike and area pathways for the next two weeks or so.

Parents are urged to keep their children away from those areas for the next three to four weeks.

Meantime, Wiebe said the geese that usually occupy Sunset Beach in Plum Coulee haven't been as big of a problem as in past years where up to sixty birds have settled to lay and hatch their eggs. The flocks could be seen walking up and down the sand to and from the water, leaving their mark along the way making an unpleasant situation for beach-goers.

A permit has now expired that allowed the shooting of these geese in order to reduce population and Wiebe explained that normal control measures, like removing eggs and nests, were effective this year.

He said officials are keeping an eye on the situation but added so far, there haven't been any complaints that the birds are becoming a pest.

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