Castoroil for moles??

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by PaulJ, Sep 20, 2003.

  1. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,774

    That's some great infoon moles. I will show it ot him and save a copy for myself.

    So if you can trap one or two moles on a small lawn yo may have them all? I was thinking that one would be trapping forever tryoing to get rid of them one at a time. but that may not be the case?

    thanks GroundKprs
  2. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    Moles are territorial, just like most other animals. Normal area of forage for one mole is about 1 acre, and he will defend his territory. In high populations, may go down to 1/2 acre. So generally, trapping the mole in your yard will eliminate your problem. BUT, when he is gone, another mole can start to use his tunnels, even if you have stomped them all down.

    This year, in a new house surrounded by woods, I have trapped three moles in the same tunnel. After I got first one, it took about 3 weeks for another to move in. Got him right away in same location I trapped the first. It was quiet for 6-8 weeks, and last week I noticed tunnel heaved again when mowing, and got the new one. In this location, it is much easier and cheaper for client to trap, rather than spray something like Mole Med repeatedly over an acre and a half.

    It takes patience to learn to read the main tunnels, but once you have it, trapping is simple. My best is about two hours after being called on a mole I had him. If your client wishes to learn himself, emphasize that he should just crush tunnels with one footstep in several locations, and mark these with stakes; then check the next day to see where it is pushed up again. This will help to learn to ID the main runways, where you want to set traps.

    Generally, moles are not a single occurrance, but a long term problem to manage, especially in outlaying areas or lots near parks or undeveloped lots. Another great info resource is your own UNL: Prevention & Control of Wildlife Damage. Moles treated here under "Other mammals." World of info on this website on all types of wildlife.
  3. Johnny

    Johnny LawnSite Member
    Messages: 101

    Speaking of moles, I have been a dedicated mole hunter for about a decade now. I have found that the only way to keep moles out of your life is to never allow them to enter into your life for any extended length of time. If your yard becomes infested with these destructive little critters, and are allowed to dig intricate tunnels under your turf, and dig shelter deep under the soil surface, then your battles will never end. And the best way to catch/kill/trap a mole, so homes are not established, is with patience and a shovel.

    Moles are hard workers, but would much rather move into an existing home than build a brand new one for themselves. Usually they will try to build a home on your turf because they can't find one vacant. The mole would prefer to eat not dig. They are loners that rarely come into contact with other moles, except to reproduce. So usually the damage that you see in your yard is from one occupant at a time. So, when you see that a mole is sharing your residence with you, send him on his way. Again, do not allow them to establish a home.

    Now you can spend your hard earned money on many different cures, chemicals, and contraptions. I haven't found one that is very reliable or efficient. Sure, moles eat grubs and controlling your grub population wouldn't hurt. But, their main food source is the lovable earthworm. Again, the existing shelter and feeding tunnels are the draw, not neccesarily the food availabilty. Your best bet is to catch them while they are active feeding. With their hand in the cookie jar. Moles in Kentucky are active feeding and digging during the 11:00am - 1:00pm hours and the 5:00pm - 7:00pm hours. If they have existing tunnels just under the surface (4" - 10") they will move through these tunnels searching for food. If not, the will dig new tunnels. Now, knowing all this, let's catch them.

    To be a successful mole hunter, follow these simple steps. Remember you must be persistant and patient.

    #1 Locate any and all feeding tunnels (do this early in the day).

    #2 Collapse these tunnels by stepping on them, all of them.

    #3 Visit the tunnel locations during the peak feeding times, looking for activity. You may have to do this several times before you locate one (during that feeding time).

    #4 When you see activity, look along the tunnel (if you periodically visit the areas this tunnel should be short) for the signs (the ground moving) of the mole.

    #5 Once located (being very quiet and light with the feet) place the shovel a few inches behind where he is digging. Then shove the tool into the soil and pop that little guy on to the surface.

    #6 Don't let him get away (they are fast). Pick him up with the shovel and place him in a can or bag or something.

    #7 Drive the mole to the next county and drop him off on the side of the highway.

    #8 Fix your lawn by raking and seeding.

    #9 Prepare for the next mole to invite himself into your yard. And yes, you will have more unwanted guests.

    If you catch moles before they do much harm to your property, then you will only have to hunt from time to time. If you allow the mole to establish tunnels, and even worse, deep homes to reproduce and spend the winter, then you will find that you have a weekly battle on your hands. A battle that will keep you busy for years to come. Again, destroy tunnels, locate and capture.

    I hope I covered the basics. Contact me for any questions, comments, or nasty remarks. HAPPY HUNTING!!!
  4. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,774

    thanks guys

    I'm learnign more about moles then I htought I would. No I have to catch some of the little buggers.
  5. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    Perhaps in KY you can set your clocks by mole activity, but do not count on specific times to trap moles. The pitchfork or shovel trick is often used by frustrated mole victims, but requires a lot of time. Moles eat up to the weight of their bodies each day, so they take in a lot of food, and that is not done in a couple of hours.

    Primary feeding time is during morning hours. Myself and a few others feel that one of the uses of the mole tunnel is for the mole to attract earthworms. Where do you find worms? In dark damp settings. They are active above ground in the open only at night. So after a night of surface feeding, the mole tunnel is a neat resting place. And the mole just runs down the tunnel gobbling them up. Have never seen this idea treated in research reports though. Most of my traps in surface runs are sprung between 6am and 10am.
  6. Dchall_San_Antonio

    Dchall_San_Antonio LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    When I was a kid the parents would go over to the neighbor who had the oleander growing, strip a branch, soak the leaves in gasoline, drop them into the mole hole with a lit match, and cover the hole up.

    I don't suppose that would fly with the regs you guys have to obey :D
  7. Green in Idaho

    Green in Idaho LawnSite Senior Member
    from Idaho
    Messages: 833

    Do you mean like the mole on Cindy Crawford's cheek????


    I prefer hunting for gophers!
    Great pleasure in taking one of those pesky fellows in a trap. :)
  8. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969


    Not only would it not fly with the regulation, It will not kill Moles. The moles just shut off the tunnel with some dirt and go on there happy way.

    Green in Idaho

    Any man that would prefer to catch Gophers to Cindy Crawford......
  9. Green in Idaho

    Green in Idaho LawnSite Senior Member
    from Idaho
    Messages: 833

  10. mower_babe

    mower_babe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 790

    castor oil never worked for us. gas bombs never worked for us either. Nor did the pellets or anything else but spike traps. Work like a charm. I think I paid $9/trap and at this time, we charge $20-30 per head. We only do it for mowing customers at this time.

Share This Page