Moles

Moles are cylindrical mammals that are primarily underground burrowers. The name comes from a conjugation of a German word for dirt and a Danish word for throwing, so they are named “dirt throwers” or ones who throw dirt.

 

Identification

  • Moles have velvety fur

  • Tiny or invisible ears and eyes

  • Short, powerful legs and arms with large paws for digging

  • Extra thumb on each hand

Environment

  • Moles can survive in low-level oxygen environments, such as underground burrows, by reusing oxygen inhaled above ground

  • Eat earthworms and other insects found in soil (totaling about half their body weight each day)

  • Saliva contains a toxin that paralyzes worms to store them for later consumption

  • Construct underground “larders” to store paralyzed worms until ready to eat
    Have 1 to 2 young per year, which rapidly grow into adults in only a few short months

Threats

  • Mole burrowing can destroy root systems, causing damage to grass and turf or plants

Treatment

  • Consists of trapping or baiting the runs

  • Find the feeding tunnels vs the travel tunnels

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