Need a Mole Patrol!
March 29, 2004 7:52 AM   Subscribe

My yard is being taken over by moles, and I have tried practically everything short of calling an exterminator (which I don't want to resort to) but the moles are destroying my yard. I've tried the vibrating sticks that you pound into the ground, I've tried castor-based repellents, which sometimes work and sometimes don't. Someone suggested that the key to moles is getting rid of their food, the grubs, so this year I am putting down Grub-Ex. I've even gotten the suggestion of burying ammonia-soaked rags in the ground in their tunnels. Does anyone have any tried and true mole solutions? I live in the country up against a nature preserve. I'm beginning to think it's hopeless. My backyard is becoming a giant sinkhole.
posted by archimago to Home & Garden (17 answers total)
Let the Grub-ex work its magic.
posted by crunchland at 7:58 AM on March 29, 2004

check the GardenWeb forums for help
posted by evening at 8:39 AM on March 29, 2004

My grandfather had these horrifying spike-a-mole things that he'd put in the ground. The little moles would run under the devices and theywould impale them. Spike emptying day was alwasy a gruesome horror, with Pop Pop striding through the yard with a wheelbarrow full of sprung mole traps, like Vlad the Impaler with with moles instead of Turks. I can't imagine, especially if you're up against a nature preserve and so close to an unending source of moles, that spking the poor things would get rid of your problem though, since as soon as you'd kill one, two more would take its place.
posted by jennyb at 9:14 AM on March 29, 2004

You need the Rodenator. It makes mole-elimination fun!
posted by five fresh fish at 9:28 AM on March 29, 2004

I'm pretty sure there was a recent MetaFilter or AskMe thread on the same or a similar issue where the Rodenator came up -- there may be additional suggestions in that thread.
posted by onlyconnect at 10:18 AM on March 29, 2004

Castor Oil! It's simple, and the moles won't go anywhere near it. (At least, my moles won't.)
posted by Zosia Blue at 10:19 AM on March 29, 2004

Perhaps you should consult with Carl Spackler.
posted by oh posey at 10:29 AM on March 29, 2004

This is what is being tried by where I work right now. there is a gopher thread from March of last year, I think.
posted by Danf at 11:16 AM on March 29, 2004

I understand you said you don't want an exterminator, but man, I called a place called Critter Control, they set traps, and my mole problems were gone within ONE DAY.
posted by GaelFC at 11:51 AM on March 29, 2004

Response by poster: I know, I feel bad for them, they have to live somewhere, but I think I will end up calling critter control because it's just getting out of hand.
posted by archimago at 12:10 PM on March 29, 2004

I wonder if releasing hungry garter snakes would help. sorry, not much help.
posted by mecran01 at 12:56 PM on March 29, 2004

What about driving stakes in the ground (concrete reinforcing rod may work) around the fenceline, close enough together that they form a barrier to the moles digging their tunnels? I am not sure how deep moles dig, though.
posted by dg at 3:08 PM on March 29, 2004

Getting rid of the grubs solved the problem in my mom's yard (very close to mole friendly wooded areas), and you really don't want the grubs either (really, you don't - they will destroy your yard as well). One of her neighbors extended their fence below the dirt level (not sure how far) as just suggested above, and that seemed to work as well.

It's a shame moles do so much damage, as they are actually doing us a favor by getting rid of the nasty grubs.
posted by Orb at 5:35 PM on March 29, 2004

One word: cats.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 6:13 PM on March 29, 2004

To rid the yard of grubs skip the toxic chemicals. These things can cause tumors in you and your family, and every year you need to apply more as they just drain away into the ground water.....

Milky spore is a natural treatment that kills the grubs, and it only needs to be reapplied every decade or two! It is a microorganism that feeds on the grubs. It will stay in your lawn for years protecting it against grubs, without toxic chemicals. Of course it does have a downside, it takes a year or so to get established. If you put it down now, it will work pretty well this year, but there will still be some grubs. The more grubs you have, the faster it gets established. Next year you should be grub free. Also, it is expensive and a PIA to apply. Further, I have heard, without any good confirmation, that the chemicals that kill grubs may also inhibit growth of the milky spore so you probably don't want to mix them this year. Despite these shortcomings you might experience this year, the next 10 to 20 years will be blissfully grub free.
posted by caddis at 7:56 PM on March 29, 2004

MMMMmmmmm. Milky spore. Biowarfare at its finest!
posted by five fresh fish at 9:02 PM on March 29, 2004

Jasper Carrott had a problem with a mole. (Zipped audio file)
posted by salmacis at 2:14 AM on March 30, 2004

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