The best bets for getting rid of moles are traps, but many people are reluctant to use them. There are also poisons and mole repellents available. We will look at the repellents first.
The formula for commercial mole repellents, such as Mole-Med, is based on castor oil. An example of a commercial mole poison is Moletox. When using mole repellents or mole poisons, you must often water the area where you'll be applying them, so that the repellent or poison will permeate the soil. Water the area well both before and after applying the mole repellent or poison, if instructed to do so on the package of the particular product that you choose. Re-application may be necessary.There are traps designed specifically for killing the pests, and they go by scary names like:
- Scissors mole trap
- Choker mole trap
- Harpoon mole trap
You can also trap moles using a small live-trap, such as is put out by the Havahart Company. The problem with Havahart traps, though, is that you still have to get rid of the live critter after you've trapped it. In some states animal relocation is even prohibited.
Trapping in the early spring can eliminate pregnant females, effectively nipping in the bud what would be a greater problem later. Where you place the trap is critical to your success in trapping. You'll want to place your mole trap near active feeding tunnels (that is, the shallower of the two types of tunnel described on Page 1). Here's how to tell if a feeding tunnel is active:
- Using your hand or a trowel, flatten sections of the moles' raised ridges of soil.
- Mark these sections with something bright (perhaps some old ribbon that you can tie to a stick to make a little flag), so it will be easy to relocate them later.
- Check back within 12 to 24 hours, to inspect the ridges you've flattened.
- If the ridges of soil are pushed back up, you'll know that Mr. Mole regards this tunnel as an active tunnel. This is where you'll place your trap.
- Cut out the turf over the active tunnel, and remove the soil right down to where the moles have beaten their path. Moles don't see well, so they'll stumble right into the trap. While their vision is poor, however, moles are sensitive to the touch. This means you can't leave any loose soil in the path leading up to the trap, or the moles will detect it and back off.
Seek alternative methods for getting rid of moles, rather than using these dangerous poisons or killing traps, especially if you have pets or children. Mole-Med is advertised as a safe alternative; but when you consider the likelihood of needing to reapply it, this method of getting rid of moles could be expensive. Page 3 discusses cheaper alternatives for homeowners of a more experimental bent....