The obvious sign of the presence of Moles Talpa europaea in your garden is the dreaded mole hill. These earthworks are the excavated soil from the moles feeding tunnels (runs) and living accommodation. Occasionally (more often in areas of high water tables) an exceptionally large mole hill will occur – this ‘Mole Fortress’ is the location of the moles nest.
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Moles themselves are quite harmless - do not try and pick a live mole up, them have fantasically sharp teeth!. The molehills however are unsightly and will ruin a lawn or paddock, blunting lawnmower blades when cut. Lawns will also begin to feel 'spongy' as the tunnels cave in. Tunnel cave-ins will also make a lawn uneven and create the potential to trip in a sunken mole run.
*Rather than flatten down molehills scatter the excavated earth around the site of the molehill. This will keep the soil near where it came from and allow the grass to continue growing.
To remove moles we first survey the site to help understand what is happening below ground. Through an understanding of mole behaviour and probing to locate tunnels, we select the most likely runs for a successful trapping programme.
We use a selection of traps choosing the most appropriate in each instance. After setting a sufficient number of traps all mole hills are removed and the garden/lawn tidied to an acceptable degree (it may take several days rain to wash the last soil away). Returning within seven days all traps are inspected and relocated if required.
Using their incredible senses of smell, touch and hearing the near blind mole patrols its runs on four hour cycles searching for food – predominantly earth worms but also soil invertebrates including insect larvae and molluscs.
The mole breeding season begins in February and is a catalyst for an increase in mole hill production. The females (sows) extend their run network to accommodate the new arrivals need for more worms. The males (boars) add to the gardeners misery by actively searching out sows to breed with.
The Sow has one litter of between 2 and 7 young (kits) per year. Being ferociously territorial when the kits reach maturity after five weeks they are forced out of ‘mothers house’ and must begin creating their own network of runs – often elsewhere in your garden!
Traditional Mole Catching
Mole catching dates back into Roman times where clay pots part filled with water were placed in mole runs. Over time these were replaced by earthenware pots and crude snares attached to springers (willow whips). With the industrial revolution new ideas, materials and production techniques gave us many of the trap designs still used today – the scissor trap being the most well known.
As a member of the British Traditional Molecatchers Register, The Suffolk Pest Control Company Ltd only uses traditional trapping techniques with approved makes of trap.
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