Moles are small mammals that live underground and have the ability to dig quickly thanks to their snouts and strong claws. Precisely because of this ability to create tunnels in the ground they can become a nuisance at home, spoiling gardens and vegetable gardens. In this article you will find several tips to repel moles from the garden and get rid of these unwelcome visitors.
Moles belong to the mammalian family of the Thalpidae, which in turn belong to the order Eulipotyphla. They are characterized as small animals with elongated snouts.
Adult moles measure 12 to 20 centimeters, depending on their species. They are found in many countries of the world, especially in North America, Europe and some Asian states.
They have dark, velvety fur that can be black, gray or brown. They are characterized by strongly muscled legs and long claws for digging.
Moles do not hibernate. Because they operate below ground, they can be active day or night.
In addition, they are recognized by their tiny eyes that make us doubt their ability to see. Although they are believed to be blind, this is not completely true, because they are quite sensitive to light. In addition, they have developed other capabilities that allow them to locate themselves and detect threats with ease.
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Are moles beneficial or harmful?
Just like field mice, rabbits, foxes, mink, aphids, slugs, mealybugs and some birds, moles are considered a threat to orchards and gardens. Especially when living in rural or country areas.
On the one hand, they can be beneficial because they eat insects and earthworms.
However, with their tunnels they can kill plants by damaging their roots. They can also destroy lawns, gardens, soccer fields or golf courses with the tunnels and mounds they leave behind. About 20% of their diet is of vegetable origin and they often damage tubers and bulbs.
Tips for repelling moles
Here are some tips on how to repel moles.
Use scented repellents
One of the organic, ecological and most effective solutions to scare moles away from the garden is to use substances with scents that moles do not tolerate, such as tomato, garlic, potatoes, elderberry or marigold. Therefore, you can make preparations with oil or vinegar and macerate these foods. Then, let it stand for a couple of days and put it on the holes of the molehills.
Also, it is common to find products for sale that have scents and perfumes that make moles stay away. These come in concentrations suitable for use in the soil.
Put up barriers
While it is true that moles dig deep, having barriers that make it difficult for them to get through is a great help. You can place wire mesh with small holes that prevent moles from entering certain areas, especially when you have orchards or gardens that you want to protect. The wire mesh should be nailed at a depth of 50 to 70 centimeters.
Moles hate vinegar. Therefore, this liquid is a great ally when it comes to repelling moles from the garden.
Mix 1 liter of vinegar with 1/2 liter of water in a bucket and spray it on the entrances of the burrows. However, be careful with the plants, because vinegar can kill the flowers or burn the grass.
There are a number of ornamental or aromatic plants that help scare moles away because they do not like their smell. Among these are spurge, mole weed, imperial crown, basil and rue.
When to contact a professional?
It is important not to confuse it with a mouse, because their behavior is different. Moles have very small ears, tiny eyes, wide legs and a short or almost non-existent tail.
Although moles are not usually in large groups, just a few are enough to have a problem in the garden. However, they are not animals that pose a great risk.
You can recognize that you have a mole infestation because the tree bark is worn down, there are several dead strips of grass and deep holes, as well as mole droppings in the grass. You should contact a professional if you notice that these tips or others you have implemented have not scared them away.
They are rarely found indoors. If you find one in your home, the best thing to do is to call health or pest control to remove it from the house and survey the area where it entered. Since they have a great ability to tunnel, they may have affected a foundation or structure.