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Moles, a year-round pest nuisance, can cause significant damage to your lawn by burrowing into the ground to create tunnels underneath – usually indicated by above-ground dirt mounds (shown below) – to provide shelter and search for food. Although they’re rarely seen, you can identify them by their gray to brown color, webbed front feet, and long nose. Their front feet are so large that they’re able to dig about a foot per minute – that’s a lot of lawn damage in a short amount of time! Moles eat insects – mostly earthworms & grubs – in large amounts each day and search for meals by tunneling underground, which is what creates the dirt mounds all over your yard, a result of soil being pushed up to the surface.
If moles are causing damage to your lawn, there are a few things you can do to prevent and get rid of them – including the use of repellents, baiting, trapping, and grub control.
Mole repellents can be purchased from your local garden store or, for a more DIY approach, made at home using a caster oil mixture. This method can be effective if the entire yard is treated with the repellent, but will only work for a short amount of time. Once the repellent’s scent diminishes, the moles may return.
Mole baits can be effective if applied properly, but are not usually recommended since the products can be harmful to other animals that come in contact with them.
The most effective method of getting rid of moles is usually trapping, preferably by a trained wildlife control specialist. Professional mole control includes identifying mole tunnels, monitoring activity, and then setting traps.
You can also help to prevent a mole invasion by limiting their food supply – grubs – with lawn care treatments. As an added bonus, you’ll be reducing the amount of grubs feeding on your lawn!