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Preventing Rodent Burrows in Earthen Embankments

About the Challenge
Help stop and prevent rodents from endangering earthen dams, canals, and levees

Posted By: Bureau of Reclamation
Category: Ideas
Partners: Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, State of Colorado Department of Natural Resources - Dam Safety Branch
Skill: Ideas Interest: Public Safety Submission Dates: 1:01 a.m. ET, Aug 29, 2016 - 11:59 p.m. ET, Oct 11, 2016

All official entries must be submitted via the InnoCentive website open on the date of launch:

Is there a way to stop and prevent rodents from burrowing into earthen embankments of dams, canals, and levees?

Rodent burrows can fill with water when the water levels change, creating seepage paths, which can lead to internal erosion in embankments resulting in the potential for catastrophic failure.  Embankment failures can cause property damage, loss of life, and interrupt crucial deliveries of water in the West and across the nation.

Trapping or baiting rodents on earthen embankments are short-term remedies, and experience has shown that within a short time, the rodents inevitably return.  Annual programs of rodent removal over thousands of miles of earthen embankment are cost prohibitive and only marginally successful.  Solvers are asked to “dig deeper” than the rodents and offer creative, cost effective, long-term solutions to this real and serious problem.


Download the Rodent Prize Competition Poster.


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All official entries must be submitted via the InnoCentive website open on the date of launch:


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