1 (also pocket gopher) A burrowing rodent with fur-lined pouches on the outside of the cheeks, found in North and Central America.
- Family Geomyidae: several genera and species
- First, it is likely that the bag fragment was carried underground by a squirrel, gopher or other burrowing rodent.
- Rodenticides control rats, mice, gophers, and other rodent pests of human habitation and agriculture.
- Experiments revealed the same cells that have also been discovered in rats, gophers, gerbils, mice, and hamsters.
1.1North American informal another term for ground squirrel.
- Richardson's ground squirrels (Spermophilus richardsonii), colloquially known as gophers, are medium-sized rodents; they are larger than mice and voles.
- What most people call gophers are either 13-lined ground squirrels, Spermophilus tridecemlineatus, or a Richardsons ground squirrel, Spermophilus richardsonii, and not a true pocket gopher.
2 (also gopher tortoise) A tortoise of dry sandy regions that excavates tunnels as shelter from the sun, native to the southern US.
- Gopherus polyphemus, family Testudinidae
- However, the northernmost range of the gopher tortoise is limited to southern South Carolina.
- Curious about the burrows she saw on a trail ride, Dawn investigated the habitat of a Florida neighbor - the gopher tortoise.
- The eastern indigo snake, which is on the federal list of threatened species, and the gopher tortoise also live here.
3 (also Gopher) Computing A menu-based system for Internet searching and document retrieval, largely superseded by the World Wide Web.
[1990s: named after the gopher mascot of the University of Minnesota, where the system was invented]
- The Gopher system enabled documents to be listed in a readable, hierarchical method that was relatively easy to navigate.
- A Gopher site was initially put into place in 1993, and then replaced in 1994 by a Web site.
- Think of what the world would look like today if we had standardized the Gopher protocol in the early 1990s.
late 18th century: perhaps from Canadian French gaufre 'honeycomb' (because the gopher “honeycombs” the ground with its burrows).