Moles can wreak havoc in a yard by digging mounds and disrupting vegetation. These pests usually prefer creating tunnels in sandy or loose soils. If you spot one molehill, you can be sure there are more, because moles dig both shallow and deep tunnel systems. Leaving your mole problem to solve itself can result in the sinking of areas in your yard. Find out what you can do to rid your yard of moles.
How to Spot a Mole
Moles grow between five and six inches in length. They have small eyes, are covered with fur and have short feet with claws. According to Gary L. Comer, Jr and Amanda D. Rodewald of Ohio State University, three types of moles typically encroach on a yard: the Hairy-tailed mole, the Star-nosed mole and the Eastern mole. Although moles eat insects, not plants, their tunnels can destroy root systems and underground pipes in yards. Look around your hard for small holes and mounds of dirt. If you stomp on the tunnel and it's repaired within a couple of days, you know you are dealing with an active mole colony.
There are many methods homeowners can use to repel moles. Some methods, such as flooding their holes or placing sharp material around their tunnels, won't work for persistent moles and can ruin your yard. Poisons used to get rid of moles are not only inhumane, but can cause harm to other non-threatening wildlife. If you get rid of the food source the colony will move on another area. Moles like eating grubs. The best time to kill grubs is in the summer when their young are hatching.
Treat grubs during their hatching times, between August 1 and September 15, with insecticides containing either imidacloprid or halofenozide.
Plant skunk lilies in your yard. The flowers and bulbs of these plants produce a foul odor that repels moles. Likewise, garlic can be planted to make your yard less pleasant to a mole.
Trapping a Mole
Find an active mole tunnel and dig a hole through the tunnel. Make the hole large enough to fit a coffee can or jar. Place a couple of earthworms in the bottom of the can to entice the mole. Pack the dirt around the can. Place a small tarp over the hole to keep out sunlight. Check your trap a couple of times a day for moles. When you find a mole, place a lid over the can or press down the tarp and secure with a rubber band. Go into a field or wooded area to set the mole free. While this method may seem laborious, you have the satisfaction of ridding your yard of moles using a humane method.
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