1. Home
Send to a Friend via Email

Discuss in my forum

Mole Control in Lawn and Garden

Hole Identification: Moles vs. Voles and Other Rodent Pests


Why is mole control necessary? Because, mole holes are unsightly on lawns and can be disruptive to the root systems of garden plants. These pests lurk in their subterranean fortresses throughout the year. But gardening and lawn-care enthusiasts are made acutely aware of them mainly during the spring and fall, especially after periods of rain, when they push mounds of dirt up to the ground surface.

The mole's preferred diet is a carnivorous one: insect grubs, adult insects and earthworms. Neither the eastern mole nor the star-nosed mole is a rodent, and therefore any gnawing damage you detect on plants is unlikely to have been caused by moles. Rodents do, however, make use of mole tunnels to attack plants underground -- making moles accessories to the crime!

Moles produce two types of tunnels, or "runways" in your yard. One runway runs just beneath the surface. These are feeding tunnels and appear as raised ridges running across your lawn. The second type of runway runs deeper and enables the moles to unite the feeding tunnels in a network. It is the soil excavated from the deep tunnels that homeowners find on their lawns, piled up in mounds that resemble little volcanoes.

Mole Control: Pest Identification

Since moles are not the only animal pests responsible for runways in lawn and garden areas, they are often confused with these other pests -- the pocket gopher and the vole -- and you must learn the difference between them. Because these lawn and garden pests are rarely seen, it makes more sense to base identification on the signs they leave behind, rather than on how the animals look. After all, you may never come face to face with these subterranean foes! And proper pest identification is the first step in effective mole control.

Whereas mole mounds, as stated above, are volcano-like in appearance, pocket gopher mounds are different, being horseshoe-shaped. Voles, meanwhile, leave no mounds at all behind. Instead, voles construct well-defined, visible runways at or near the surface, about two inches wide. Vole runways result from the voles eating the grass blades, as well as from the constant traffic of numerous little feet over the same path. And if any of these lawn and garden pests can literally "beat a path" through the grass, it is the voles. Rabbits do not have anything over this prolific rodent!

On Page 2 some mole control methods will be introduced....

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.