Are You A Homeowner With A Mole Problem?
Are you infuriated with the moles ruining your lawn and flower beds? We understand how moles can drive you insane. The main problem with moles is the tunnels they create. Most moles dig tunnels close to the surface of the ground which can damage vegetation. Since moles don’t hibernate, they are continually on the hunt for earthworms, insects, small mammals and other food sources. With a large appetite to satisfy, moles dig constantly to find more food creating endless amount of tunnels. You can imagine that without proper pest control, moles can and will be a serious “lawn hazard.” Due to their digging habits, they are often underground making it quite difficult to identify whether or not if you truly have a mole problem. If you’re noticing evidence of raised tunnels and large mounds, moles are present without a doubt. Here are a few thing you may not have known.
All things considered, moles are fascinating animals…
- A 5 ounce mole will consume 45-50 lbs of worms and insects each year.
- Moles can dig surface tunnels at approximately 18 feet/hour.
- Moles travel through existing tunnels at about 80 feet/minute.
- Moles contain twice as much blood and hemoglobin as other mammals of similar size. This allows moles to breathe more easily in underground environments with low oxygen.
Over-watering your lawn can bring soil invertebrates and moles closer to the ground surface, making tunnels more visible. Reducing the amount or frequency of watering may help temporarily. Reducing the amount of turf grass on your property will also reduce the visible signs of damage. In the long run, converting lawn to gardens, paths, hedgerows, or other more natural habitats can save you time and money as well as provide habitat for beneficial birds and butterflies.
- Tree Damage— Mole tunnels may serve as runways for voles, field mic, and others that may feed on roots.
- Moles produce erratic and extensive feeding ridges in turf with occasional, fist-sized conical mounds.
- Rarely moles feed on bulbs and roots of flowers and garden crops.
- Insect-foraging activity and tunnels may cause drying of roots.
- Lawn Damage— Raised ridges may cause temporary drying to death of turf and impede lawn care operations.
- Structural Damage— extremely rare. Water diversion through mole tunnels may occur.
- Agricultural Damage— Little or local effects on root crops
- Moles eat earthworms, insects, and invertebrates. Reducing prey populations may reduce mole populations.
- Controlling Grubs–Moles do eat grubs. But your lawn can be grub free and you could still have grubs. Nevertheless, if your lawn lacks other food sources, control of grubs MAY resolve your mole problem. If you decide on controlling grubs, the following advice may be helpful: White grubs overwinter as larvae. In spring, they move closer to the soil surface to pupate. White grubs found during spring are not a concern and applying insecticides to kill the grubs – larvae – of masked chafers, Japanese beetles, or even May/June bugs is not justified. For insecticide applications targeting only white grubs, the ideal window for applying products such as Merit, Arena or Meridian is between the 3rd week of June and mid-July. If insecticides are applied earlier in the season, such as in mid-May for bluegrass billbugs; some of these products can provide effective control of white grubs. However, this does not always work well. Lawn care services and homeowners need to closely monitor lawns in August for white grubs when insecticides are applied earlier than mid-June.
- Exclusion by metal barriers; rarely flooding. Metal perimeter barriers buried at least 4 inches may lower mole foraging activity; buried to 30 inches may eliminate mole travel.
Average Dimensions and Weight
- Average total length, 7 inches (17.6 cm)
- Average length of tail, 1 1/4 inches
- (3.3 cm)
- Average weight, 4 ounces (115 g)
- Average total length, 6 5/8 inches
- (16.8 cm)
- Average length of tail, 1 1/4 inches
- (3.3 cm)
- Average weight, 3 ounces (85 g)
Trapping is the most successful and practical method of getting rid of moles. There are several mole traps on
the market. Each, if properly handled, will give good results. The traps are set over a depressed portion of the surface tunnel. As a mole moves through the tunnel, it pushes upward on the depressed tunnel roof and trips the broad trigger pan of the trap. The brand names of the more common traps are: Victor mole trap, Out O’ Sight, and Nash (choker loop) mole trap. The Victor trap has sharp spikes that impale the mole when the spikes are driven into the ground by the spring. The Out O’ Sight trap has scissor like jaws that close firmly across the runway, one pair on either side of the trigger pan. The Nash trap has a choker loop that tightens around the mole’s body. Others include the Easy-Set mole eliminator, Cinch mole trap and the Death-Klutch gopher trap. These traps are well suited to moles because the mole springs them when following its natural instinct to reopen obstructed passageways. Success or failure in the use of these devices depends largely on the operator’s knowledge of the mole’s habits and of the trap mechanism.