I knew that living in the country would come with a lot of changes, but I didn't realize how many pests I would have to deal with each day. Even the winter came with its own pest problems. My blog is all about the problematic pests that country living presents. You will find out what you can do to keep your home pest-free and how to eliminate the pests that have already moved into your home. Hopefully, my personal experiences can help you find the solutions to pest problems that you have and take back your home from the insects and rodents causing you troubles.
There are many pests that can ruin your garden, including moles. Moles are subterranean mammals that can be found in many parts of the United States. Here are three things gardeners need to know about moles.
How do you identify moles?
Moles are small, rodent-like mammals. They range in size from 113 to 159 millimeters (4.4 to 6.2 inches) long and generally have black fur. Their front paws are oversized and resemble spades; they use these oversized paws to tunnel through the soil. While moles are often confused with voles, voles have small front paws.
Since moles spend their lives in underground tunnels, you may not see them, but mole activity is easy to identify. Moles dig their tunnels fairly close to the surface, so when you water your garden, the tunnels may collapse, leaving ridges in your soil. When you walk through your garden, the tunnels may collapse under your feet.
Why are moles pests?
The tunnels that moles dig may not seem significant, but they can destroy plants with shallow root systems, like your grass. Most annual flowers—like lavenders and impatiens—also have shallow roots and can be destroyed by a tunnelling mole. Vegetables like lettuce, onions and cucumbers also have shallow roots and are vulnerable to mole damage. The moles don't eat the roots, they just tunnel right through them on their quest to find their preferred food: earthworms.
How can you keep moles out your garden?
Moles dig extensive tunnel systems, so the amount of damage to your garden may make you think you have a serious infestation on your hands. Moles prefer to live alone, but since they may need to eat their entire bodyweight in earthworms everyday, they need to do a lot of digging and may travel two or three acres to do so. This means that you may only have one mole to get rid of.
If you don't want to kill the mole, you can use natural mole repellants to try to scare it away. Plants like mole plant, castor beans and daffodils are known to deter moles. Introduce these plants to your garden to motivate the mole to go tunnel somewhere else.
Traps can be used to kill moles. For best results, these traps should be placed near the mole's tunnels. Once you've caught the mole, fill in their tunnels to prevent other garden-unfriendly animals, like voles, from moving into them.
If you have a mole living in your garden and are having trouble getting rid of it by yourself, hire a pest control company like Commonwealth Exterminating Co.