Moles quickly become a real nightmare for gardens, gardeners know well and fear them. They can indeed destroy a land in a short time even if it is alone. It digs underground galleries to feed itself. This is what we call molehills. They damage seeds and sever plant roots. Here’s how to drive them out of your garden!
If the mole causes damage, it is not only harmful to the garden and nature. Her daily work, when she goes in search of insects and worms for food, helps to work the land and to drain it. It can therefore be conducive to the health of your plants.
Even if it has qualities, it is not therefore welcome in the garden. And that’s okay, because there is nothing worse than seeing a lawn that you have spent time maintaining, be disfigured by molehills in just a few days.
How to recognize the mole?
The mole is an insectivorous mammal belonging to the Talpidae family. Its main source of food is soil since it devours worms, slugs, larvae, as well as insects and centipedes. She lives in gardens, but also in meadows and fields. She is practically blind, but her sense of smell, hearing and touch are developed to the extreme.
It is thanks to these senses that she is able to spot her enemies and prey from a great distance. She also knows how to measure distances with precision.
The most common mole, the European mole, weighs between 60 and 140 grams and measures between 15 and 20 centimeters. In theory, it can live between 10 and 20 years. However, in reality, it has a lifespan of less than 5 years, due to premature wear of its teeth, due to its diet.
The mole is identifiable thanks to its black fur, its long muzzle and its very specific small eyes. She has very wide front legs which help her when digging galleries. It can thus achieve up to 20 meters of gallery per day.
The safest way to spot moles is by observing molehills that appear all over your lawn or in your plantations. As soon as you have one or two moles on your land, it tends to sag in some places and the roots of the plants are very often damaged.
How to get rid of moles?
Moles are wary and intelligent animals, but also very resilient and have a deep knowledge of their environment and the dangers it poses. They also instinctively distrust humans. It is for this reason that it is difficult to hunt them.
You have to start by being patient when you see molehills appearing. Often this only lasts a few days and then the fresh soil can be collected for the potted plants or the vegetable garden. And the grass will be replanted. The earth is then enriched thanks to their passage.
If the problem persists, then it is necessary to act. It is better to rule out solutions that are polluting and cruel to these mammals. They are also often ineffective. You’ll avoid chemicals, mothballs, and firecrackers. The former are dangerous to handle and the latter are bad for your health and the environment. Also forget the branches of roses and broken glass that do not produce any effect and inflict unnecessary suffering.
Fortunately, natural solutions are also there to help you.
The different techniques to hunt moles:
Play on their sense of smell which is particularly sensitive is a real solution. Moles are easily upset by certain natural products.
Place dog hair or in the absence of hair at the entrance to the molehill. Moles hate it and will walk away.
Plant elderberry in the areas of the garden that you want to preserve.
Put on liquid manure in the galleries, they don’t like it at all.
You should know that they are sensitive to certain plants such as onions, garlic, hyacinth, imperial fritillary flower bulbs, daffodils and euphorbias. By planting them in the areas where moles usually come, you are deterring them from settling.
Castor cake is also a powerful repellant that works great on moles. He removes them with efficiency, and moreover he enriches the earth. You can find it in powder form.
Finally, you will find natural repellant granules which keep moles away in a rather appreciable way, but beware, the effect is short-lived!
Use their hearing which is very keen
The best way is to plant ultra-sound terminals, intended to ward off moles. They emit sounds that are very unpleasant for this animal, but completely inaudible to people. The easiest way is to opt for autonomous terminals running on solar energy. Move them regularly for optimum efficiency. The plastic bottle is another option. You put it upside down on a stick stuck in the ground, with the wind it will move making noise. The hissing in particular scares them and they tend to move away.
If you’re not worried about killing them, place metal or plastic mole traps in the various areas they’ve invaded. You have to put them in the moles’ galleries, then cover them with earth. You check them every 48 hours and remove them when you run out of moles.
The predators of the mole
Very often to get rid of the small animals which invade you and which are harmful to the garden, we think of their enemies. But in the case of the mole, that’s not necessarily a good idea. Indeed, there is little chance that you want to replace it with its predators, which are none other than snakes, foxes, polecats, martens, raptors and rats.
Mistakes to avoid
- Forget battery-powered vibrators, they attract worms and therefore risk bringing in moles.
- Firecracker: it is not a good idea, because it is dangerous.
- Purge spurge has no effect on moles at all.
- The smoke: they are ineffective, because clever, the mole blocks the smoky galleries with its paws.
- The tube trap: it only captures small moles, not yet smart and seasoned enough.
Methods to prevent moles
- The hot and humid green waste composter attracts worms and therefore moles. It is necessary to install a fence to avoid them.
- It is a good idea to bury it and put the earth on top with a grid, it will no longer have access and will go looking for worms in another garden.
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