In North America, there are six different species of moles living in our lawn. The most common mole is Eastern Mole (Scalepus Acquaticus). Moles are classified as insectivores, and they usually like to create tunnel underground in our lawn to find their foods, such as earthworms, larvae (grubs) and other insects.
Mole is not always troublesome, they help to aerate your soil by eating many insects, but their tunnels can become a problem as they push up mounds of earth and harm the root systems of the plants, but basically, they do not eat our plants.
Moles have gray or brown fur that can be distinguished from gophers, meadow voles, and shrews by their naked, pointed nose. They are small animal, with 7 inches long, including the tail. Their small eyes and ears concealed by fur and large spade-like front feet. The Eastern Mole (Scalepus Acquaticus) can eat 70-80% of their own body weight of insects every day.
How to Get Rid of Moles in Your Yard Naturally
Many natural solutions are available to home gardeners. You may try one of these solutions to get rid of moles naturally. Here are some suggestions:
1. Eliminate Grubs
Soil dwelling insects like Japanese beetle grubs is moles favorite food. To eliminate grubs, you can try Milky Spore and/or beneficial nematodes and also a Lawn Aerator Sandals. The lack of grubs (moles foods) will limit moles from getting their meals and decrease their tunneling activity. But, if your soil is healthy, then may still feed on earthworms.
The second method to get rid of moles is using natural repellant such as castor oil. Castor oil is very effective to keep burrowing animals from gardens, lawns and other planting areas. Moles spend their most time in the dark, that’s why they have limited eyed sight, but has a good sense of smell. The smell of castor oil will keep them away from your lawn.
Create a concentrate by mix 2 tablespoons of dish soap with a cup of castor oil in a gallon of water. Spread this repellant all over the lawn and along tunnels. You can apply every month and after the rains as a preventive action or you can apply this repellant when tunnels or cone shaped mounds appear in soil from early spring to late fall.
To prevent moles from ruining your lawn and garden, you can plant some certain plants that can deter moles from occupying the lawn. These plants include daffodils, alliums, marigolds, and fritillarias. Castor bean plants are also popular as mole deterrent, but this plant is poisonous. If you want to make a stronger barrier, you can create your trench around the lawn. Dig a trench roughly with 6 inches wide and two feet deep. Then, fill it with rock or line it with wire to prevent moles or any burrowing animals from invading your garden.
4. Ultrasonic Devices
Using ultrasonic sound as a mole repellant is quite powerful. You can use The Sonic Mole Chaser to produces a penetrating underground sonic pulse that makes underground rodents dizzy. Your pets won’t be affected, but mole will find the noise very irritating and will move to a quieter place.
5. Chocolate Lilies
Another natural repellent for moles from getting invade your lawn is chocolate lilies. You can plant this around your lawn as a preventive step to keep the moles away from your garden.
Bait can be used as one of the solutions to get rid of moles in your yard. There are some baits which have a look of a worm and attract moles easily. Other baits come in a cone (poison peanuts). But, be careful using this method if you have a dog who can find this bait and may eat it.
You can try battery-based devices to create a vibration that you put into the ground to get rid of the moles in your yard. You may also try vibration wind-mills and fumigators for better results.
8. Attract mole predators.
Another solution to eliminate the mole in your lawn is using mole predators. Attract mole predators to your yard is a simply hands off solution. Owls are one of the natural predators to moles, to attract this bird you can building or buying a nest box. Buy or build nest boxes look like large bird house then place to a tree high off the ground. Set the nest up high in a tree and fill it with straw. Sooner or later an owl will be attracted to it. Other the owls, snakes and fox are probably moles biggest threat.
Trapping is the most convincing and reliable method to control mole in your yard. Before setting traps, determine which tunnels are active. These can be located by flattening the pushed up soil and check the next day if it’s risen again. After you located the active tunnels, then place a trap or live trap in the entrance of the hole and cover it with any solid covering. Traps will work well because they capitalize on the mole’s natural instinct to clear an obstructed tunnel. Traps should be installed in early spring when tunnels are first seen, or after the first fall rains.
Consider using live traps if can’t see any living things death. After capturing the moles, you can relocate them and not kill them. To keep moles alive, you also can try to capture them using shovels. When you notice their appearance in a tunnel, then block or close the section of the trail off with two shovels (to trap the mole). Then, throw a large bucket or a trash can over the trapped mole, scoop it up and transport it away from your lawn.
Preventing Mole Infestation
1. Identify signs of moles. This is important because sometimes people easily mistake a gopher to a mole. The difference between these animals is Gophers don’t kill your grass.
2. Keep your lawn in good condition. If you want to keep the moles away from your lawn, you have to cut your lawn grass regularly. This will help you to see the signs of mole easily. Also, make sure do not make your soil too soggy, because this can attract the moles (they loves wet soil/earth). It will be good if you avoid over-watering your lawn.
3. Add simple components to your lawn. Place dry ice in mole’s tunnels. The carbon dioxide it releases will suffocate the moles. Place garden wind spinners along their trails and the entrance holes. They will cause the ground area to vibrate, and moles hate it, causing them to move on to a more quiet location.
4. Fill the abandoned tunnel with rocks. Moles hate digging through rocks, so it could be a great preventative action to fill their tunnels. Other moles may use the abandoned tunnels, but they will be less inclined if you use rocks.