European garden Moles can tunnel up to 4 metres per hour! they inhabit areas that are rich in insects and worms, around 80% of their diet comes from earthworms. It is unlikely that you will ever see a Mole as they tend to remain underground, however the damage they do to lawns and your property is pretty hard to miss.
Mole hills can spring up overnight on lawns and other grassy areas, a new Mole hill will have loose damp soil and as they get older they harden into flatter more compacted mud patches. You might also notice distinctive raised ridges across your lawn caused by the moles tunnelling beneath. This tunnelling often damages the roots of plants, lawns and even crops causing the plant to die. As if thats not enough Moles can often bring stones to the surface causing damage to lawnmowers and other mowing equipment.CONTACT US NOW
Moles are only about 15cm long, but have stout forearms and broad front paws with strong claws which give the animal its ability to tunnel.
A mole’s diet mainly consists of earthworms, but they also feed on beetles and other insects, even baby mice.
Moles breed between March and May. The gestation period is 30 days and 1-2 litters are born a year.
A mole's diet primarily consists of earthworms and other small invertebrates found in the soil and also a variety of nuts. Because their saliva contains a toxin that can paralyse earthworms, moles are able to store their still living prey for later consumption. They construct special underground "larders" for just this purpose; researchers have discovered such larders with over a thousand earthworms in them. Before eating earthworms, moles pull them between their squeezed paws to force the collected earth and dirt out of the worm's gut. The Star-nosed Mole can detect, catch and eat food faster than the human eye can follow (under 300 milliseconds). Although the mole can be eaten, the taste is said to be deeply unpleasant.
Moles are considered to be agricultural pests in some countries, while in others, such as Germany, they are a protected species but may be killed if a permit is received. Problems cited as caused by moles include contamination of silage with soil particles making it unpalatable to livestock, the covering of pasture with fresh soil reducing its size and yield, damage to agricultural machinery by the exposure of stones, damage to young plants through disturbance of the soil, weed invasion of pasture through exposure of fresh tilled soil, and damage to drainage systems and watercourses. Other species such as weasels and voles may use mole tunnels to gain access to enclosed areas or plant roots. Moles burrow lawns, raising molehills, and killing the lawn, for which they are sometimes considered pests. They can undermine plant roots, indirectly causing damage or death. However, contrary to popular belief, moles do not eat plant roots. They are controlled with traps such as mole-catchers, smoke bombs, and poisons such as calcium carbide and strychnine, which is now banned in Britain. The most common method now is Phostoxin or Talunex tablets. They contain aluminium phosphide and are inserted in the mole tunnels, where they turn into phosphine gas (not be confused with phosgene gas). More recently high grade nitrogen gas has proven an effective remedy, with the added advantage of having no polluting effect to the environment. Other common defensive measures include cat litter and blood meal, to repel the mole, or flooding or smoking its burrow. There are also devices sold to trap the mole in its burrow, when one sees the "mole hill" moving and therefore knows where the animal is, and then stabbing it. Humane traps which capture the mole alive so that it may be transported elsewhere are also options. However, in many gardens, the damage caused by moles to lawns is mostly visual, and it is also possible to simply remove the earth of the molehills as they appear, leaving their permanent galleries for the moles to continue their existence underground.
At 1st Stop Pest Control we use a range of techniques to remove moles including traps and chemicals.