Say Goodbye To Moles: Proven Methods For Managing Moles In Your Spring Yard
Plenty of wildlife in Texas can create problems in your yard and garden. Insects, gophers, voles, and moles are among the many pests that can wreak havoc on your property. Whichever problematic pest you are currently dealing with, the pros at Modern Pest Control have the solution.
In this article, we will be focusing on mole pest control in Spring. People often misidentify moles as rodents, but these critters are mammals that will burrow and create long tunnels under your lawn and garden. These nuisance pests can ruin the landscape and grass in your yard and detract from the beauty of your property.
Moles are sometimes confused with other critters, such as gophers and voles, so we’ll start by explaining the signs of moles on your property to help you determine if they are the pest causing trouble. Mistakenly treating the wrong animal pest in your yard will only lead to more headaches.
Next, we will review the many problems that moles can cause for homeowners. Whether you are having trouble in the garden, lawn, or parts of your landscape, these small critters can create big problems. Not only do they cause issues in the yard, but moles also have the potential to cause problems under the foundation of your house.
Moles can be challenging pests to eliminate, and most mole control folk remedies and ideas on the internet are ineffective and sometimes hazardous. We’ll review some of the mole control suggestions your well-meaning friends might be giving to help you better understand what will and won’t work with these burrowing pests. The more you know about moles, the easier it is to understand why many DIY control methods fail.
Finally, we will explain how to keep this pest from returning to your yard so you can finally say goodbye to troublesome moles for good. Prevention is the key to mole control, so we will give you some simple tips the pros suggest to keep moles from coming back again. Learn all you need to know about controlling moles in your yard with the pest management professionals at Modern Pest Control.
Signs Of Moles On Your Property
If you were to see a mole on your property, you might think it’s cute, and by the looks of them, they don’t seem like they’d be able to cause much trouble. Because moles in Spring burrow under the ground, you don’t get too many chances to catch sight of them or to see the full extent of the damage they do. Your best chance to see one is during the spring when you might notice one popping out of the earth searching for a mate.
The most common type of mole that wildlife removal companies see in the Houston area is the eastern mole. This type of mole is 5 1/2 to 6 inches long on average and is similar in shape to an Idaho potato. Eastern moles have short tails that are either bare or have sparse hairs.
Eastern moles have two specialties, eating insects and digging tunnels, and they are very good at both. These nuisance pests are insectivores, which means their diet consists primarily of insects. Mole’s prey includes mole crickets, slugs, grubs, ants, and their favorite food, earthworms.
Moles paralyze earthworms by biting into their brain and storing them alive in deep chambers under the ground known as larders. The earthworms become a stockpile of food for times when foraging isn’t going well.
Many of the mole’s physical characteristics aid them in their burrowing. Their fur is very soft, and unlike the family dog with hair pointing toward the tail, mole hair sticks straight up, allowing them to travel forward and backward without getting the soil stuck in it. Their fine fur is gray and appears velvety and dense, which helps to keep out dirt and water.
Moles have poorly developed eyes, but because they spend almost their entire life under the ground, their remaining senses more than compensate. They make up for their poor eyesight with their sense of touch. Eastern moles have long, sensitive snouts and paddle-shaped front feet with stout claws that help to guide them.
The mole’s powerful front feet are the reason they can become such an issue under the ground of your property. Here are some of the most likely signs of moles in your yard:
- Seeing a mole is the surest sign that they are the culprit.
- Finding volcano-shaped hills in your lawn, called molehills.
- You may notice piles of excavated dirt near tunnel entrances.
- A lot of weeds suddenly coming up can point to mole activity below the surface.
- Surface runways that look like long ridges of soil running across your property.
- Sections of lawn that appear to have dry or dead grass.
Because they rarely come to the surface, people are sometimes left guessing which animal is causing trouble in their yard. But correctly identifying the problematic pest is critical to determining the best treatment. Voles and gophers are the most likely pests homeowners wrongly accuse of damaging the yard when they have moles.
The easiest way to tell which animal is causing problems is to look at the damage to your property. Voles are herbivores that damage the lower bark on trees and will happily eat the vegetables right out of your garden. Gophers will leave mounds of fresh soil on the lawn, but theirs are more likely to be crescent-shaped vs. the mole’s volcano-shaped hill.
Insects can sometimes also be to blame for damaged grass and plants. The best way to figure out what you are dealing with is to contact a local company that offers pest and wildlife control services, such as Modern Pest Control, for assistance. Our team is here to help you determine what pest problem you are having and the best solution to use.
Moles In Your Yard Can Create Many Problems
Not to “make a mountain out of a molehill,” but without effective mole control, these critters can cause a lot of trouble on your property. Now that we know the signs let’s dig a little deeper into moles and see what lies below the surface damage on your lawn. To start, we’ll review some of their habits in the following list and then elaborate on the problems these characteristics cause on each topic below:
- Digging foraging tunnels
- Digging deep underground burrows
- Creating separate tunnels and chambers to form their living space
- Tunneling under the foundation of your home
Moles sometimes take the blame for eating the roots of plants and grass, which isn’t true for these insectivores. Typically, the insects they feed on chew through the roots. But this does not mean moles don’t cause damage to root systems.
The shallow foraging tunnels moles dig to search for food appear as ridges on the surface that crisscross over your lawn. While they forage for insects under the surface, they can also cause damage to the roots of garden plants and ornamentals. Feeding tunnels can also cause the roots of your grass to dry up, leaving yellowing or dead patches on the lawn.
Mole tunnels are also used as a highway system to travel between the various types of burrows they create. As we mentioned, there is a burrow called a larder where they stock food, but they also have birthing chambers and specific areas for resting. Moles will often live in these tunnels for several generations before moving on.
Depending on soil conditions, an Eastern mole can tunnel a 160-foot burrow in just one night. This amount is the equivalent of a person digging half a mile overnight, which helps to explain how much trouble they can cause below the surface of your property.
Tunnels and chambers are usually between 6 and 12 inches below the surface. As they dig their deep burrows, moles push the soil toward the surface and form molehills. Their front feet are so powerful they can clear out 18 feet of earth per hour when tunneling through loose soil.
Tunneling below the foundation of your house, below concrete slabs, or under the driveway can cause significant problems. Mole tunnels allow water to accumulate under these surfaces. In those few winter days when Spring’s temperature goes below freezing, the water can freeze and thaw, resulting in cracks in the foundation, slabs, or driveway.
Foundation troubles most often occur when the house has a shallow foundation. We want to note that although moles will dig under your home, they are not a pest that will enter the house. Their source of food is under the ground, and that is where they stay.
Moles can be active throughout the year in Spring, but their activity will slow in certain conditions, such as high heat, cold, or drought. Less activity does not mean they have gone away, though, and these nuisances will not leave on their own. If you need help controlling this pest, contact a company like Modern Pest Control, which provides mole control services near you.
The Best Way To Get Rid Of A Mole Problem
Troublesome moles can be challenging to get rid of, and there is a wide range of theories revolving around the best way to deal with them. To save you some time, money, and effort, we’ll briefly review the most common DIY mole control products and their overall effectiveness:
- Sonic mole control: Marketed as ultrasonic sound waves to nauseate the moles; unfortunately, these just don’t work.
- Mole-repelling daisy windmills: Meant to create vibrations that disturb the moles underground, but moles will tunnel even near highways, so these have no effect.
- Chewing gum mole control: The theory is the moles will eat the gum and die, but the moles eat insects, and the gum will not attract them as food.
- Mothballs: These are a common folk remedy, but they can endanger the health of children and pets and don’t last long enough to control moles.
- Grub control: Many sites insist controlling grubs will control moles, but their primary food source is the ever-present earthworm.
Some store-bought mole control products have a slightly higher success rate, but they also have the potential to cause more problems. Many of these products aren’t safe for children and pets and may harm other animals on your property that you weren’t trying to control. Before using any device or chemical in your yard, we recommend looking around to see what else might be affected.
The best way to control moles is to work with a company like Modern Pest Control, which knows how to deal with these pests quickly and effectively. Modern Pest Control has been helping to protect our neighbors and their properties from pests for more than 70 years, and we strive to offer the safest and most efficient strategy to eliminate the pests you have and work to prevent them from returning.
As with any home service, it helps to know what to expect from a pest control company when they come to your property. Our mole control services start with thoroughly inspecting your property. Our pest management professionals will first check that moles are the problem pests and determine which areas of your property they are likely burrowing under.
Professional inspections are the best way to determine the full scope of the damage the moles have been causing. Because most mole activity is underground, it can be challenging for homeowners to determine how extensive the damage may be. Our team understands how moles operate and can help you find signs of trouble that may be less evident than surface damage.
Following inspection, we’ll review our findings and develop the best treatment program for your property. Our pros use Integrated Pest Management strategies and carefully consider the environmental impact of our plan before moving forward. We strive to use family and pet-friendly options to handle any pest you might be dealing with.
Trapping is often the best way to deal with moles, but these critters sometimes abandon specific surface tunnels and move on to others. Our team of wildlife experts has the experience and knowledge necessary to find the correct tunnels to use. We advise against setting traps on your own that may accidentally trap another animal.
Our experts can also help determine which factors on your property are most likely to attract the attention of moles. We can suggest exclusion techniques to help keep these animals from burrowing under your valuable landscaping. Pests such as moles are sometimes called nuisances, but the damage they cause to your property can be costly.
We know how frustrating it is for homeowners to look out at their formerly beautiful lawn and see it disfigured with molehills and tunnels. Contact us at Modern Pest Control today if you are ready to reclaim your yard from these troublesome pests.
Simple Tips To Prevent Moles From Coming Back
After we remove your mole problem, it is time to take steps to prevent them from coming back. Mole pest control can be challenging because they can dig and burrow far below the surface. Additionally, many modern gardening methods and products that make your landscape thrive can have the unfortunate side effect of attracting moles.
Compost piles are one of the most likely attractants for moles, especially when the technique you use requires earthworms to help break down the compost. Areas with mulch and peat moss are also attractive to moles because they create loose conditions that the moles can easily tunnel through. We aren’t suggesting you remove these factors, but they are something to consider when trying to prevent mole activity.
Proactive prevention is one of the best ways to control most of the pests we deal with, including moles. Here are some preventative mole control methods that will help to reduce the chances of them returning:
- Avoid overwatering your garden and lawn because high moisture levels can increase the number of grubs and earthworms, which in turn attract moles.
- Replacing plants with high water needs with more drought-resistant plants can help you reduce water use and attract less of the insects moles prey on.
- Reducing the amount of open space by replacing grassy areas with sturdy shrubs can help to deter moles.
- Instead of planting your garden in the ground, use raised beds to avoid mole damage.
- Perimeter barriers such as sheet metal buried at least two feet will help to prevent moles from gaining access to your yard.
Teaming up with a wildlife control company in Spring is the best way to handle an infestation of moles. The pros at Modern Pest Control understand how to deal with this pest and can help you determine what about your property is attracting them and offer further suggestions for keeping them away. Contact us today with any questions or schedule your free inspection and reclaim your yard from these nuisance pests.