How To Deal With Moles At Their Summer Cottage
How To Deal With Moles At Their Summer Cottage

Video: How To Deal With Moles At Their Summer Cottage

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As a result of the expanded economic activity of man, he was constantly accompanied by some animals, which were previously typical inhabitants of deciduous forests and river valleys with partially flooded meadows. Among them is the mole.

The dimensions of this animal are small (it is up to 15 cm long, and the tail is only 2-4 cm). Its flat body (with a narrow, proboscis-like muzzle) is adapted for life underground, and even its short and soft coat, tightly adhering to the skin, makes it easier for it to move through the soil.

These animals have small skins, but their thick velvety fur is highly valued due to its durability, so moles are game animals. The front paws of the mole are turned with the palms outward and are armed with five clawed fingers with which it rakes and rakes the ground. But the hind legs of the mole are weak and thin, since they do not play an important role in the life of the animal. Although his eyes are underdeveloped and the ears are missing, he hears perfectly. In addition, he is the owner of an excellent sense of touch and a special sense of smell.

The mole spends its whole life in dark, non-surface tunnels laid in different soil layers, therefore it successfully orients itself underground (one might say, blindly). Interestingly, moles do not hibernate during the winter, staying awake day and night. In loose and moist forest soil, he lays near-surface galleries (at a depth of 3-5 cm). To make it difficult to detect, when they are arranged, the mole makes a mound, barely visible from above.

But in open and noisy places, the passages deepen significantly (up to 10-20 cm and more). It is much more difficult for an animal to push up such a thick layer of earth from such a depth: this land looks well noticeable heaps (they are otherwise called "molehills"). The mole throws a lot of soil to the surface when building foraging holes. The stern galleries are narrow ("one-way traffic") and extend up to several hundred meters. In the summer, the mole builds them close to the soil surface, and in the fall and winter it places them somewhat deeper.

The mole arranges a family nest on a personal plot in a dry place (under a shed or veranda), in natural conditions - under the cover of tree roots (in the forest) or under a hummock or under a large stone (in a meadow).

The mole is constantly hungry and is forced three times a day (in the morning, at noon and in the evening) to make its way through the residential galleries to the feeding trap burrows in order to view them. The absence of fresh molehills in the mole's habitat for a week or even months means that it receives all its food in previously laid galleries. The diet of the mole is dominated by worms, soil insects and their larvae, it eats somewhat less. Worms themselves can actively crawl (and in large numbers) into trap mole passages, since they are attracted here by the smell of specific mole musk or by a higher air temperature than in other soil layers.

Sensing prey, the blind predator immediately rushes to it and drags it into the forage hole. Having seized a worm, the cunning hunter does not kill it, but paralyzes it, biting from the head: in this state, the worms do not spoil for a long time, and the prey remains "fresh" for a long time. The mole eats a whole or torn worm from the end, holding it with its paws and cleaning it from the ground with both its paws and its front teeth. Once full, it usually curls up into a ball and falls asleep for 4-5 hours. This gluttonous predator eats about as much food as it weighs per day. Before the onset of strong frosty days, the mole prepares prey "in reserve" (mainly earthworms).

It is interesting that moles usually cannot coexist with the water vole, which also leads an underground lifestyle and penetrates the fertile soil layer with its moves. Before you fight the intruders, you need to figure out which of them is in charge of the site. It turns out that both moles and water voles (rats) make earth emissions from garden holes.

The usefulness and harmfulness of this cunning predator are evaluated differently. It is useful that it eats harmful insects, incl. wireworms (click bearers). Some people believe that with its own moves it drains and loosens the earth: roots stretch along the mole holes, excess water flows down during the spring thaw of snow, air is supplied to the deep layers of the soil. They believe that seeds of vegetable plants germinate more easily on molehills and bushes of fruit berries grow well. By the way, it is recommended to collect soil for seedlings exactly in the place where there are many mole passages, since there it is the most fertile.

According to a number of gardeners, forming many molehills in a wide variety of places on the site: on the plantings of potatoes, vegetables, flowers and other crops, these animals cause them a lot of trouble and trouble. Overgrown with grass and becoming relatively invisible in the meadows, especially with a high number of these animals, molehills greatly interfere with manual mowing on the preparation of green mass and hay.

They try to fight moles in different ways. Some experts believe that moles don't like black beans. They also believe that vibrational noise negatively affects moles: for this, a simple spinner is installed above the moves (a two-blade propeller rotating from the wind and rotating in different directions).

Other gardeners scare off moles by placing a herring head or some kind of rags moistened with kerosene, naphthalene, oil or tar in their hole.

From the old advice: moles do not like it when balls of fresh pig manure or a bunch of finely chopped heads of onions and garlic are placed in their holes. Some gardeners manage to snatch animals with frequent pitchforks when they see them throwing the land up.

The use of traps is a very effective means of dealing with moles. For this purpose, break the horizontal "fresh" path of the mole (it is determined by the mounds of the newly thrown earth), set two traps, facing the platforms in different directions. The mole trap is prepared in such a way that it works at the slightest pressure by a rodent. From above, the mink is carefully covered with a board so that the mole does not feel fresh air entering it.

I had to make sure that catching moles in vegetable gardens is fraught with some difficulties: often, sensing a foreign object in the gallery, the mole pushes the trap up with its nose and easily crawls under it in well-cultivated garden soil. If traps are placed in a meadow or on a road (on paths between summer cottages), where turf or dense soil prevents the mole from doing such an operation, he is forced to climb through the trap (he cannot turn back because of weak legs) and falls into a trap.

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