Molecat Booth 1524, Pavilion A Moles and gophers are a common agricultural menace. This year the World Ag Expo will feature a product aimed at eliminating these burrowing pests.


The Molecat uses a blank cartridge attached to a pressure-sensitive trigger to produce a concussive wave that immediately kills moles, gophers, snakes and other burrowing animals. The shock wave knocks the deceased animal back into the hole ensuring his friends won’t use the same tunnel and eliminating the need to deal with the body.

The device was designed to fit existing holes to preempt the need for destructive digging and is equipped with several safety features to make it pet and child friendly. They may be startled by the sound, however, which resembles a .45 caliber gun going off.

Inventor Vern Reitenbaugh first created the device to clear his own yard and flower garden of unwanted visitors. After growing frustrated with his limited success using conventional traps, Reitenbaugh used his training as a technical engineer to find an alternative solution.

Reitenbaugh’s wife, Cheryl says, “One day he came in from the yard wet and muddy and looking like Yosemite Sam with traps in both hands. He said he just wasn’t going to do it anymore.”


Inspiration for the design came from a variety of sources, Reitenbaugh says, including a nail gun and his son’s experience as a military explosives specialist. By 2008, the Reitenbaughs’ prototypes were finished and he began selling his design from their home. They’ve been expanding production ever since. PD

  • Melissa Miller

  • Staff Writer
  • Progressive Dairyman
  • Email Miller