Why DIY Mole Removal Doesn’t Work

Ineffective DIY Mole Removal

The internet has many how-to articles for DIY solutions to common problems. You can find thousands of tips, tricks, and strategies that promise quick solutions without involving the experts. Some of this advice is useful, but a lot is just noise. DIY mole removal strategies fall into the latter category.

Eastern ground moles are small, annoying pests that live mainly in the Eastern United States. They spend most of their lives underground, and once they have made a home in your yard or garden, they can cause serious damage. Many homeowners will turn to the internet for ideas on how to get rid of moles in their yards. However, these DIY mole removal strategies are usually ineffective. Many methods are untested by experts, and the results found online are based on anecdotal evidence, rather than scientific fact.

In this blog, we’ll cover the top DIY mole removal strategies, and why they don’t work. Read on so you don’t waste time and money trying ineffective mole removal methods. Then, we’ll cover what you should do instead if you have a ground mole problem.

Sound Repellents

Garden centers carry many types of sonic ground mole repellents. These battery-powered devices are stuck into your lawn, and supposedly emit a high-pitched frequency or vibration that frightens moles away from your property. The advertising on these products claims that the noise will be so annoying to the moles that they will leave your yard and find somewhere quieter to dig their tunnels.

However, the evidence to support these products is anecdotal, at best. Experts have not tested sound repellents as a mole removal strategy. What may often occur is a simple coincidence, where a homeowner places a sound repellent in their yard and the mole simply moves to a different part of their territory. Moles will travel throughout their designated territory as food becomes available, so it may be that they were not necessarily “repelled” by the sound, but simply wandered off looking for more food.

Castor or Peppermint Oil

A common DIY mole removal strategy is to soak cotton balls in castor or peppermint oil and place them at the entrances to mole tunnels. Supposedly, the oils are toxic to moles and can hurt them, but the evidence supporting this claim is shoddy at best.

While these oils can make moles sick if ingested, the moles are more likely to simply ignore the cotton balls. Soil can block scents from traveling, and as the moles dig deeper underground, they won’t necessarily notice that you’ve added something to their tunnels. If they do get close, they can simply avoid the smell and dig elsewhere.

Blocking Tunnels

Moles spend almost the entirety of their lives digging tunnels to find food. A common DIY mole removal method is to block the entrances of their tunnels with dirt or pieces of wood to make them leave your property. The conventional wisdom goes that moles will get sick of having to dig more tunnels than necessary and dig elsewhere to establish a territory that is less work for them.

However, blocking tunnels is more likely to just make the moles dig more tunnels around the obstruction, which ruins your yard faster and can cause more problems. This DIY mole removal strategy may inadvertently make your mole problem worse.

Reducing Food Sources

The Eastern Ground Mole’s primary food sources are grubs and earthworms. Some DIY mole removal strategies include using beneficial nematodes or other natural methods of grub control to reduce their food sources. The ideology behind this method is that if there isn’t enough food for a mole to eat in their chosen territory, they will move somewhere else where there is enough food.

However, while moles do prefer grubs, they will eat just about any insect they can find. Unless you’re able to drastically reduce the insect, grub, and worm populations in your yard without killing your plants, you probably won’t make enough of a dent in the mole’s food source to encourage it to find somewhere else to hunt.

Baits

Mole bait is a poison that is shaped like a grub or an earthworm, the mole’s favorite food source. Mole baits are effective at killing moles, however, getting them to eat them is the biggest problem with this DIY mole removal strategy. Unless the bait is placed directly in the path of the mole, they may not find it with as much as they tunnel, even if you place it at the entrance of the tunnel.

Another reason why this method may be ineffective is its risk factor. These baits are also toxic to dogs, cats, and other animals, and may cause a problem if ingested by the wrong animal. It’s best to avoid using bait at all costs, as the risks can outweigh the benefits.

Noxious Flowers

Finally, a common DIY mole repellent strategy involves the use of plants or flowers that moles find repulsive. Marigolds and other flowers supposedly are noxious to moles and planting a border of them around your garden may discourage moles from digging into your yard in the first place. However, evidence of the effectiveness of these flowers in repelling existing moles is inconclusive.

What Can I Do to Remove Moles?

If this list has you discouraged, you don’t need to worry. The best and most effective way to remove ground moles in your yard is to have them trapped and killed by expert pest removal services. Trap Your Moles has been trapping moles and other wildlife pests in the Cincinnati area for years. We are dedicated and thorough, so you don’t have to worry about the moles coming back once we’ve removed them.

If you’re struggling with moles in your yard, get in touch with us today and we’ll come to your property to do an inspection. We can then work with you to determine the best strategy to trap and kill the moles, so you don’t have to struggle with ineffective DIY mole removal solutions that waste your time and money.

Signs of Chipmunk Damage

signs of chipmunk damage

If you live anywhere in the Eastern half of the United States, you’ve seen chipmunks around. The tiny, striped critters belong to the squirrel family, and although they may be cute, they can be a nuisance. They can also cause serious damage to your property if they’re left unchecked. But how do you recognize signs of chipmunk damage?

Chipmunks multiply quickly, and they spend most of their time burrowing underground and foraging for food. One or two chipmunks might seem like cute visitors in your yard, but once they start to breed, their numbers can quickly get out of control. Their destructive nature can cause damage to your yard, structures on your property, and your garden.

If you’ve seen chipmunks around your yard, and you think you might have a problem, keep reading for our top signs of chipmunk damage.

Holes

The biggest sign you have chipmunk damage is the presence of the holes they leave behind in your yard. Chipmunks spend most of their time on the ground or burrowing underground, and they can tunnel quite extensively. Chipmunk tunnels can stretch between 10 and 30 feet long, and can extend to 3 feet underground. The entrances to the tunnels may be difficult to spot unless you have a lot of them.

The entrances and exits to chipmunk burrows are small holes between 2-3 inches in diameter. You won’t see any piles of soil around the hole, just the hole itself. In addition to the holes, you may also see damage from their tunnel systems along the foundation of your home or other structures on your property. They like to burrow close to trees, shrubs, or other structures for protection from predators, and your home falls into that category.

Chipmunk tunnels can also disrupt sidewalks, patios, and retention walls. Anywhere that they have burrowed, they will weaken the ground underneath the structure. If it becomes too weak, the structure can cave in on itself or become damaged.

Piles of Food

Another sign you may have an infestation of chipmunks in your yard is the presence of food piles. Especially close to winter, chipmunks will stockpile seeds, nuts, and grains in hidden areas so they can access them easily.

Chipmunks don’t hibernate in the winter, although they do enter a deep sleep state for long periods of time. They will wake up periodically to eat from their food stores before going back to sleep. You might notice signs of these stockpiles in your flowerpots, flowerbeds, or other spots in your garden.

Uprooted Bulbs

While chipmunks mainly eat nuts, seeds, mushrooms, and berries, part of their diet also consists of plant bulbs. If you have a garden full of plants, they may be in trouble with a chipmunk infestation. One of the first signs you have unwanted visitors in your yard will be that you find the bulbs of your flowers and other plants uprooted and chewed on.

Ruined Plants/Garden

Chipmunks will also eat vegetables and fruit, so if you have a small garden, watch out! One of the other major signs of chipmunk damage is a chewed-up garden. An infestation of chipmunks will lead to a ruined garden quickly, especially if the chipmunks multiply out of control.

Tracks or Scat

Finally, if chipmunks have managed to evade your sight, you may notice other signs they have made a home in your yard. At the entrances to their tunnels or nearby their food sources, check the ground carefully. Chipmunk tracks are tiny, with 4 front toes and 5 hind toes. You may also see chipmunk scat around as well. Their droppings are small and resemble rat or mouse droppings, which appear like tiny, oblong pellets that taper on the ends. The droppings are no bigger than a centimeter in length, so they can be easily missed if you’re not looking carefully.

How Do I Get Rid of Chipmunks?

Once you’ve determined that you have a chipmunk problem, they aren’t likely to go away on their own. If chipmunks have decided that your yard is safe and has enough food for them, it’s difficult to get them to move on. We always recommend calling expert wildlife trappers, such as Trap Your Moles, to trap and remove chipmunks from your property. However, there are a couple of things you can do to prevent the chipmunks from causing as much damage to your yard until you can get rid of them with the help of professionals.

Protect Your Foundation

The biggest threat that chipmunks provide to homeowners is the chance of a ruined foundation due to chipmunk burrows. You can purchase L-shaped guards to put around the edges of your foundation. These guards are designed to prevent dogs from digging up fences, but they can also work to deter chipmunks from tunneling underneath your foundation.

Protect Your Plant Bulbs

If chipmunks are chomping on your flower bulbs, you can plant them underneath wire mesh covers to deter chipmunks from digging. Make sure the opening is large enough for the plant to sprout through but small enough that chipmunks won’t be able to dig them up.

Call the Expert Chipmunk Trappers at the First Signs of Chipmunk Damage

Preventive strategies will only go so far if you have a chipmunk problem. The best way to get rid of chipmunks for good is to call in the experts with Trap Your Moles. We trap pest wildlife like moles and chipmunks so you can get your yard back from their damage. Get in touch with us today to set up your pest removal.