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Moles in Your Yard

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You used to have a very nice lawn before, but it looks more like a mole’s home, then you do really have moles underground. Getting rid of them might be quite hard, but with some tips, it can become easier.

Moles

A Mole

A Mole

Moles, those chipmunk-sized mammals that can devour more than their own weight in earthworms, ants, grubs, and other insect larvae every day, may tunnel around several lawns in their quest for food.

Healthy soil includes earthworms and other staples of moles’ diet. If you see piles of soft dirt in a lawn connected by sunken lines, you have stumbled upon a mole’s neighborhood.

Moles can tunnel 12 to 15 feet per hour, according to Ohio State University experts. The best time to get rid of moles is in early spring before they give birth, or in late fall.

Trapping

A Mole Trap

A Mole Trap

Although a number of gadgets are available to rid lawns of moles, experts say trapping works best. Mr. Yerg says,

Start trapping as soon as you see the damage. Do not wait. It’s a lot easier to trap two moles than 20.

The straight line is usually the moles’ main tunnel, and the squiggly branches are usually detours taken in search of food. Mr. Yerg says,

A main run beside a driveway or a walkway is a good spot for a trap.

For a list of recommended trappers, contact your local cooperative extension office. Trappers could charge per animal or have a flat fee. If you want to try trapping on your own, here are some tips:

● Find the main tunnel. Usually it is the central link, with other smaller tunnels working off of it.

● Collapse the tunnels by walking over them. The mole will have the feeding tunnel back up within a day.

● Set an underground trap into the main tunnel area. Check the traps daily.

● Man’s best friend could be good mole trapper. A dog can hear them in the tunnel underground.

Mr. Yerg says,

The longer you wait to trap them, the more extensive the tunneling becomes.

Do not waste your money on gimmicks. If you do not want to trap moles, just collapse the tunnels and live with the moles. Look at the bright side. They are great soil aerators and having them around is a sign of healthy soil with a good population of earthworms.

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Category: Gardening

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