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Vole Damage

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by jweiner, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. jweiner

    jweiner LawnSite Member
    Messages: 142

    Does vole damage to a lawn usually grow back if the dead grass is raked away? The lawn in question is in Wisconsin and the voles seem to come out and do their damage over the winter. Any help would be appreciated.
  2. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    From my experience with voles in Wisco, I've decided that voles only eat the above ground vegetation... I wouldn't worry about it too much, right now... but if you learn something to the contrary, keep us updated.... :)
  3. jweiner

    jweiner LawnSite Member
    Messages: 142

    No - these voles burrow about an inch or so under the grass leaving lines of dead grass above them. Just do a google search on "vole damage." The pictures are pretty classic. I just can't figure out if the damage will recover.
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    If they are burrowing through the root zone then of course you got problems, but typicallly that would be moles... I have voles out in the blueberry patch and the turf surrounding that area is thick, course grasses with an inch or more of dead thatch for them to burrow through...

    When I open up their trails with a rake I see they have chewed right down to the crowns but stopped there, so I wouldn't worry too much... They do burrow into the soil to den, so anything is possible...

    Let us know what you discover about those things, especially if you come up with a way to kill them... :)
  5. OmahaFriendly

    OmahaFriendly LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I had some damage to my backyard from voles and the turf never grew back. I had to re-sod the area.

    As far as pest control, not long after the problem began we got a family dog. Not for that purpose but the dog killed several voles and we haven't had anymore problems. Not a practical solution for clients but thought I'd share.

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