Is This Vole Damage?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Classified, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. Classified

    Classified LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 988

    I just took over a number of commercial properties that have had seed planted within the past 1-2 years depending on the site. A few of the properties have this damage and its identical. The only thing is, they are in different locations and some is worse than others. Here is one of the worst spots. Everything lines up to me to appear as Vole damage but the only difference is the trails aernt very deep. They are just down to the soil layer, not in the soil itself. The brown grass is just sitting there, you can rake it up and there are new shoots of grass coming up but very thin.

    Also, I beleive the little balls are the droppings. not sure, they are found where the evergreens look as if they have been trimmed.

    Let me know what you think.




  2. Classified

    Classified LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 988

    More pictures




  3. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,643

    You got some nice vole damage. I don't know about the droppings though.

    CHARLES CUE LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,093

    Looks like more than one critters those look like rabbit turds
  5. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,167

    Yup, I agree with both
  6. Classified

    Classified LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 988

    OK this is what I thought. Now, Voles eat evergreens right? That is also part of there "destruction"? I just looked in my Pesticide book also and that is what it said but Id like to doublecheck that with you guys.

    Rabbit turds eh? I think you are right about that. I could not find anything about the droppings of a vole so im not sure on that. Rabbits dont eat evergreens do they?
  7. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    You have a combination of things going on there. Yes. ou have vole damage on the turf. However, the dropping are not vole droppings...they are rabbit droppings. Vole droppings are oval shaped and longer (about a 1/4", or so).
    The damage to the shrubs could be physical damage from the rabbit(s) nesting in the shrub and laying branches over. When I say nesting, I don't mean actual "nest" to have babies (these are done in small holes on the ground during warm months). Check for chewing damage on the bark areas of the shrub. If it is below the snow line or level to where the snow line was, then it is more than likely from the voles - especially sub surface damage....they eat alot of underground vegetation and root material. As a matter of fact, this is why one species of vole is popularly known as "potato mice". They eat the tubers of potato plants and destroy them. During winter months, it is common for rabbits to chew on barks and woody materials such as exposed roses and such.
    this damage (on the turf) will heal itself up rather quickly. Prune the dead shrubbery branches out of the shrubs. That will eventually have to fill in itself.
  8. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Posts: 5,852

    Atta boy Runner I agree on both counts -- my vote is also for rabbit _____. Plus obvious Vole (meadow mice) damage. We have seen "above average" vole damage here cuz of the prolonged snow cover. It normally recovers without any additional attention. Take care, _________

    If anybody wonders why the "_______" on any of our posts, there is a reason. Sad, but true.
  9. humble1

    humble1 LawnSite Silver Member
    from MA
    Posts: 2,499

    are those yews, deer eat yews and their turds look like that about a med fistfull worth
  10. tlg

    tlg LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 645

    Yes to the vole problem in the grass. Yes to will rabbits eat evergreens. Rabbits will eat the bark off a variety of plants including trees and evergreens. The problem is significantly worse when there had been a lot of snow in a rough winter. Voles also will chew on the bark of low growing evergreens like junipers especially under a heavy snow pack.

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