"You better know your stuff because customers with horror stories of folks who came out and charged good money with great promises who in the end turned out to be totally incapable of getting rid of the moles for good are at least as abundant as these miracle cures".
EXACTLY... and that's why anyone offering the service needs to have the skill set necessary to solve the mole problem. Believe me, I have heard many, many stories of wasted time and money from customers that hired companies to eliminate their mole problem with poison with no results (as well using sonic repellers and other gizmos). By trapping you effectively remove the lawn damaging mole and have proof of it. Not to get into a big debate, but the poisons do work IF the mole eats it. However, when a mole detects an unnatural substance or something that doesn't belong in their tunnel they will dig around it, push it out to the surface or just plug the tunnel. If you use this approach on moles there is no way to prove the mole is dead when using various mole baits or poisons. Keep in mind that any credible and professional lawn care provider is aware of the risks of drift and run off when using pesticides and fertilizer. There is also a risk of secondary poisoning when using these various mole baits and poisons as well. Another draw back of using Talpirid for example is that it can be rendered useless in two simple ways - rain and humidity can break down the bait faster than normal conditions and chemicals that are applied before or after (within a few days) of applying Talpirid can affect the bait by contamination, ie., irrigation and lawn treatments. This in effect would generate call backs which reduce profits. Another point - if Talpirid is so effective why did Bell Labs introduce their own mole trap?
There is an entire industry built around mole trapping and manufacturers and developers are constantly introducing new products and there are even franchises available that specialize in mole control. Trapping is still said to be the most effective means of mole control and all you have to do is take a moment to wrap your mind around it to realize the potential profit you can add to your existing business.
These topics and many more are discussed in the handbook. My goal with this thread was not to get off topic but to simply address a subject that seems to crop up intermittently. At this time I respectfully ask that only those that are interested in "mole control as a business" respond to the thread. To debate methods or for other questions there are other threads we can do that on.
BTW - skunks are the smell of money! ;-)