9 myths about moles | Landscaping

How do I REALLY get rid of moles in my garden?

Morning soap, juicy fruit gums, apple cider vinegar, and even essential oils? There is no shortage of birthmark removal remedies, so how do you know what really works for getting rid of birthmarks in your yard? Is there some kind of poison that kills moles? How about killing all the maggots? All we know is that moles are a common nuisance to homeowners and can devastate your beautiful lawn by creating tunnels right under the lawn that you have been protecting and growing for years. Although moles can dig tunnels up to three feet deep in your yard, as they dig, they kick up debris, causing the great mounds to run the entire length of the tunnels that you see criss-crossing your yard. The pros at Ryan Lawn & Tree are here to break the record with some broken mole myths!

Mole myth # 1: control the maggots to control the moles.

Moles dig main lines through your lawn in search of food – mostly earthworms. Ryan Lawn and Tree can reduce your mole population and keep your lawn beautiful.

MYTH DESTROYED: While moles can eat maggots, over 90 percent of their diet consists of earthworms. Hence, controlling maggots will not control moles. There are two types of mole in the Midwest – the eastern mole and the European mole. These energetic insectivores feed primarily on earthworms, but will also eat insects or anything else that gets in their way! A mole consumes 25 to 50 percent of its weight every day! DO NOT expect to control moles with maggot control products. Moles can also feed on the periodic cicada (17- and 13-year-old locusts), and the mole population can vary significantly depending on the cicada life cycle.

Mole Myth # 2: Kill or Scare Moles away with Juicy Fruit Gum, Essential Oils, Castor Oil, Broken Glass, Cigarettes, Hot Peppers, etc.

MYTH BUSTED: Our RYAN professionals are trained experts with degrees and extensive experience in turf management, forestry, horticulture, landscaping, and wildlife biology and we can tell you that there is no solid research to prove the effectiveness of these claims. Some of these “home remedies” can actually be dangerous to people, pets, and the environment.

Mole Myth # 3: Use poison corn or mouse / rat poison to control moles.

MYTH BUSTED: Moles are insect eaters. Their main food is earthworms. They do not eat plants, seeds or roots and therefore also do not eat mouse / rat poisons or baits that are used to control rodents.

Mole myth # 4: trample down the mole’s tunnels to remove moles from your yard.

MYTH DESTROYED: While performing nightly pounding rituals in your yard can help alleviate some of the anger you feel towards the moles ripping up the lawn you have tended, it will in no way eliminate or deter them. Moles use main and scouting runs to forage for food and can always re-use a run whether or not it has been trampled. They love to dig and will easily reclaim the damaged tunnels or dig new ones.

Mole Myth # 5: Buy a high-pitched vibrating device and install it on your lawn to get rid of the moles.

BUSTED MYTH: While these gadgets are selling well at the local hardware store, you will find that their super solar-powered noise content probably isn’t going to scare off your pesky mole buddies. These devices may work for a short time, but it is only a matter of time before moles get used to the sound and return.

Mole myth # 6: Moles hibernate in winter.

BUSTED MYTH: While you may not see their activity above ground in winter, they do not hibernate during normal Midwestern weather conditions. Instead, in cold temperatures they dig a little deeper into the ground – up to a meter deep – and find earthworms there to eat.

Mole myth # 7: moles. Voles. They are all the same.

MYTH DESTROYED: Moles and voles are completely different and therefore there are different ways to get rid of moles OR voles in your garden. Moles bury tunnels under the ground and voles create paths in the grass on the ground. Moles eat worms and insects. Voles eat nuts and seeds. Voles are eliminated in a similar manner to rodents with Ryan’s Rodent Guard Service.

Mole Myth # 8: Trapping moles is the best way to get rid of moles in your yard.

BUSTED MYTH: While there are a variety of mole traps on the market that will either kill the mole or actually capture it to release it from your property, trapping is only about 13 percent effective at reducing your mole population. If you’re trying to set a trap, the first thing you need to do is find the main tunnel. Then make sure you don’t try to put your bait in molehills. The mound will be too deep to effectively catch the mole.

If the trap is spring loaded, don’t just pull the trap out of the ground. The dead mole doesn’t come out of the ground like a shashlik, it gets stuck in the tunnel. This is fine if you don’t want to dispose of the living thing, but without inspecting the tunnel, you won’t know if you killed the mole or if the trap misfire. Many homeowners have caught a mole and haven’t even noticed it. A yard can have enough worms and insects to feed multiple moles. Trapping moles can be effective, but if your yard is adjacent to a wooded or wild area, complete mole control can be difficult.

Mole Myth # 9: There is one mole venom that can reduce your lawn moles.

TRUTH! There is a mole poison bait that kills moles within 24 hours called talpirid. The key to using Talpirid is to place the bait in the main tunnel. A mole has several main lines with many branch mole damage lines. A mole will use the main line several times a day, but may only use the secondary lines once and never return. Monitor the tunnels to find the main line and place your bait there.

This video from Kansas State University can help you understand how to track a mole tunnel. The method involves using a broomstick to poke holes in many tunnels. Then come back the next day to see which tunnels have been repaired. Repeat this process for a few days to see where the main lines are, then place your bait in these tunnels.

While some are concerned about the safety of children and pets when using any type of mole venom, the only thing that talpirid venom is in the rubber worm that is buried underground is out of the reach of animals and children. Still, the RYAN professionals will mark the placement of Talpirid worms and recommend not to disturb these areas so that pets and children are ideally kept away from this area.

Get professional mole reduction services from Ryan Lawn & Tree

Tired of finding tunnels and setting traps to get moles out of your garden? Then you need to pick up the phone and call 855.216.2293. The professionals at Ryan Lawn & Tree spend most of their time keeping your yard looking its best with our lawn fertilization, tree removal, landscaping, irrigation and other lawn maintenance services. So they are there for you when we need to protect this lawn from moles. You will be equally concerned with getting rid of the critters that are ruining your lawn. Contact any of the five locations in the Midwest in Kansas City, St. Louis, Wichita, Springfield or Tulsa and they will be happy to answer any questions you may have about mole reduction. You can also always use the Ask a Pro feature to ask your questions.

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