Regina Leader-Post - - TRAVEL - An­dre Ramshaw, Post­media News

To tourists, they’re fuzzy am­bas­sadors of the Swiss Alps; to res­i­dents, they’re a home-in­vad­ing scourge. And now res­i­dents of Zer­matt, in Switzer­land’s south­ern Valais can­ton, are ready to de­clare war on the mar­mot, a plump ro­dent that thrives in mead­ows and sub­alpine grass­land.

Zer­matt has a par­tic­u­larly large pop­u­la­tion of marmots, but the pop­u­la­tion ex­plo­sion has led to new rules al­low­ing peo­ple to shoot them out­side of hunt­ing sea­son.

“In cer­tain ar­eas it’s re­ally bad,” one fedup home­owner told Swiss daily Blick. “The marmots even go into apart­ments when the bal­cony door is open.”

The pesky crea­tures, which re­sem­ble over­sized squir­rels, will soon be go­ing into hi­ber­na­tion, but im­pa­tient res­i­dents have re­sorted to smok­ing them out of their bur­rows and plac­ing glass shards around their habi­tats.

An alpine mar­mot

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