The Q&A Archives: Moles tunneling under my lawn

Question: Moles are driving me crazy, tunneling under my lawn and my asparagus and bulb beds. How can I get rid of them? Lois Hendrickson Osceola, WI

Answer: The best control for moles is trapping, says Robert Newman, professor of horticulture at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. There are two types of traps available: plunger and scissor. Flatten a mole's tunnel with your foot and wait a day or soto see if the mole raises the soil up again. If so, it's an active tunnel. Place the traps in the runway of the tunnel and check daily. I don't think much of the tricks and home remedies people use to get rid of moles, adds Newman. They aren't reliable. I don't think much of poisons, either. They just aren't necessary. Moles don't live in high populations; it's usually one or two that cause all the trouble. Moles may be attracted to your lawn in their search for white grubs. As grubs move toward the soil surface to feed on grass roots in spring, the moles move in. Brown patches in the lawn can indicate high populations of grubs (as many as five per square yard). But lowering the white grub population may not eliminate moles because theyalso feed on other soil organisms such as earthworms, says University of Wisconsin Entomologist Charles Koval.

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