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Video: How I Drove Moles From My Site
Is the "worm" problem solvable?
I have already told on the pages of the magazine about the moles, about how the gardeners in our village managed to expel them from the site, flooding the underground passages with water.
But the neighbors, I must admit, were incredibly lucky. Apparently, the whole point was that the moles had just started to penetrate there and occupied only a small corner on the site. And so they managed to "smoke" with water.
I, however, like other summer residents who tried this technique, did not work. Moles made their way to our site from a meadow. And although I noticed them in time and flooded the passages with water, this only delayed their invasion by a week. Apparently, after waiting in the holes (air sinuses) until the water went into the surrounding soil, the animals continued their "dirty work". And, as a result, molehills (piles of earth) appeared closer and closer to the gate. On their supposed path, I dug a ditch 50 centimeters deep. But this did not help: the moles made a move under the bathhouse and, thus rounding the ditch, ended up on the site.
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In the first summer, these natural mole rats, apparently, were assimilated, because there were no more than ten molehills. However, then the moles bred successfully, and with each summer cottage the number of molehills doubled, or even tripled. Moreover, the "occupation" of the site took place in all directions. And in the fourth year, almost the entire land was "decorated" with numerous molehills. Looking mournfully at the disfigured vegetable garden (especially at the two undermined and therefore dried up precious junipers for me), not to mention the ruined strawberry bushes, I involuntarily asked myself the question: is the mole friend or foe?
Because in some publications, for example, in the magazine “My Beautiful Garden” it is stated that the mole: “… It brings more benefits than harm: by laying tunnels, it loosens the soil, contributing to its aeration. In addition, due to its gluttony, the mole destroys many pests. " True, the publication was unsigned. Apparently, the author himself did not believe in what he wrote. Indeed, this animal destroys wireworms, bears, beetle larvae (beetle), snails, wood lice.
In support of these allegations, the author announced that he almost protects these very moles: they say, they destroy the harmful beetles. But this is a pure delusion … I work with the magazine "Yuny naturalist", and the scientific consultant of the magazine explained that, indeed, in the Black Earth zone and further south, the mole is beneficial, destroying numerous beetles. However, in the climatic conditions of the North-West, there are few beetles, and therefore they do not cause significant harm to plantings.
In addition, it should be remembered that the main food of moles is the unsurpassed helpers of farmers - earthworms. And since moles do not hibernate, they store this food for future use. And one more thing: although the animals do not feed on berries and root crops, while making moves, they damage plants, thereby slowing down their development, or even leading to death.
Therefore, looking again at the site (we have 15.5 hundred square meters), thoroughly "cultivated" by moles, I made an unambiguous conclusion: we must fight them, they must be expelled! But how? My attempts to flood their passages with water, I repeat, failed. What to do next?
Once, passing through the village, I saw several weathercocks with propellers in one of the gardens. They interested me. I talked with the owners of the site. It turned out that in this way they fight moles.
It would seem that this is a simple and reliable way to get rid of moles! All that remains is to act. But there was something that confused me a lot about this design …
Firstly, the sound from the propeller is transmitted first to the horizontal wooden crossbar (body), on which it is fixed, and through it to the vertical stick. That is, a double sound transmission is obtained. In other words, double loss of sound.
Secondly, wood is a poor sound conductor.
These two conclusions inevitably led to the idea that the vibration from such a device would be weak. When I asked the owners of the site about the effectiveness of weathercocks, they looked at each other and somehow hesitated. And after a pause, they explained not very confidently that the result would not be immediate, they say, we have to wait. I was not convinced by their arguments, and I decided to abandon weathercocks.
I began to look for other ways to get rid of moles. I dismissed the usual mechanical mole traps right away, since everyone who used them unanimously declared their complete uselessness.
Some gardeners suggested using electronic mole repellents: they say, these are the modern most effective devices. True, for some reason it was mainly those who had not yet fought with moles themselves. But closer acquaintance with such scarers left me disheartened.
These electronic scarers operate on two types of batteries: solar-charged and mains-powered. The cheapest of them, as stated in many advertisements, from three hundred rubles. And you have to look for them! The radius of action is no more than a meter.
Now imagine how many of these repellents will be needed, for example, on my 15.5 ares plot? You can, of course, rearrange them: the mole left this place, move the repeller to another place. And if the animal returns to its original place, what then? So are we going to move them back and forth?
In addition, such manipulations will cost a pretty penny! Not only does each repeller cost a lot of money, but also charging with electricity. And one more trouble: according to the instruction manual, it is sometimes necessary to remove static voltage on electric scarers. But how to do it is not described.
Moreover, one of the instructions recommends installing the device specifically at a depth of 38.5 centimeters. What happens if you set, say, to a depth of 36 or 40 centimeters, then the efficiency of the device will decrease or will it stop working altogether? Another option: I will install this Chinese repeller at the recommended depth, and the ground will suddenly settle. What then? Nobody could really explain anything.
Having estimated all the pros and cons, I came to the unhappy conclusion that all these ingenious electronic things are unlikely to help me get rid of moles. You should look for simple, "folk" ways to deal with these annoying animals.
In magazines, I found recommendations to scare off moles with the sharp smells of birch tar, spreading chips smeared with it all over the site, or the smell of kerosene. They also advised planting vegetable beans, which, they say, tolerate moles. They will immediately leave the site.
Another bullshit. And here's why … On our site every year, three rather large beds are occupied with potatoes. In each row between the bushes, we sow beans. Sometimes we put several beans in the hole at once. Alas, beans, both white and black, do not affect the behavior of moles in any way. These animals ignore them.
Despite the objections of the household, I decided to test the option with kerosene. The author of the article advised to take a rag, soak it in kerosene and place it in a wormhole. Then fill up the course so that the smell does not evaporate. He made sure that all the moles were gone.
Soaking the rags, I became so saturated with the smell of kerosene that those around me frowned as they approached me. However, I still received a convincing result of the kerosene manipulations: the moles were safely making passages, bypassing my kerosene barriers.
It turned out that there was no escape from these animals. But…
Riding a bicycle through the gardening located not far from our village, I saw an interesting structure in a well-groomed area. More precisely, I first heard and then saw. Beer cans hung from ordinary (inch) water pipes. There were five of them. They were located on molehills around the greenhouse, not far from the road.
I got off my bike and began to look … The pipes with the cans rose 1-1.5 meters above the ground. From gusts of wind, the bottom of the cans hit the base pipes, creating a rather loud sound cacophony. It turned out because, firstly, the banks began to sound (strum) at different times, and secondly, they sounded differently. It was quite obvious that all this "mechanics" was directed against moles.
Since there were locks on the gate and on the door of the house (and the neighbors too), I was not able to talk to anyone. But I got a good look through the fence. Since the moles around these jerks were clearly stale, one could at least assume that the moles had left these places.
After a while, I came to this site again. Alas, I did not find anyone again. However, there were no molehills or jingles anymore. I left a note asking to call, but no one responded. But since I saw an anti-mole construction device, I decided to try to make such strummers.
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I did not have suitable tubes, so I cut rods 1.5 meters long using a metal hacksaw from a wire with a diameter of six millimeters. Then I cut out the top lid of half-liter beer cans (which I saw on the gardening site) with scissors so that only the rim remained. He bent the sharp edges with pliers.
Since all beer cans have a concave bottom, it had to be made convex so that the can would not get stuck on the bar. To do this, I took a smooth stick, fixed it in a vise and, putting a can on it, began to bend the bottom. Although you could just put the stick on a solid base and bend it with the same success. After this operation, the jar looked like in the picture. All that remained was to stick the bar into the ground and put the jar on it.
Experimentally established: strumming can be significantly enhanced if you use liter beer cans. True, you have to spend more effort bending the bottom. Only I advise you not to get carried away with the number of cans - have mercy on your neighbors. After all, you can achieve not only a loud strumming, but also a real rumble. For example, when I put on liter cans on fifteen rods, their strumming was clearly audible from a hundred meters away.
So I began to fight the impostors for my own plot. Moreover, he put sound scarers not anywhere, but in accordance with the actions of moles … As soon as in the morning (most often) or in the afternoon he found fresh molehills, he immediately put strummers in those places. After all, molehills arise on the passages along which animals move.
And although the animals stubbornly continued to make moves, diligently avoiding the strummers, I with the same persistence put new cans on the moves. When, after two or three molehills, the further direction of the moves was found out, he immediately put jingles in this direction, thereby preventing the movement of the moles. And when they changed the direction of the passages, I immediately blocked it.
Finally, when I blocked each of the three directions of movement of the animals with a barrier of four cans, located in a semicircle one meter apart, and the total number of cans reached nineteen, the moles still left. This conclusion could be drawn from the absence of new molehills. Thus, only two months after the installation of the strummers from the beer cans, I (hopefully) managed to drive the animals out.
And only after that, yielding to the insistent requests of the household, he took off the seven cans closest to the house. They are very tired of this endless annoying strumming. However, he left the base rods. Just in case: you never know what. What if the moles come back.
Some conclusions can be drawn from my anti-mole experience:
1. The "work" of cans must be constantly monitored. This is due to the fact that sometimes the can “sits” poorly on the base (pin, pipe, fittings, metal bar). It can fall to one side. In this position, the bank will "work" (strum) only in a certain direction of the wind. The worst case scenario is when it gets stuck with some part of the base. In this case, the bank will only shake slightly, emitting a faint sound, and most often it will be silent.
It is clear that the work of the can depends entirely on how curved its bottom is, that is, how it is located on the base. An insufficiently or poorly working can must be replaced or it is better to try to bend the bottom. Sometimes it helps to rearrange a similar jar on a different base.
Ideal when the curved center of the can is exactly on the base. It is clear that it is not always possible to achieve such a situation (although it is necessary to strive for this!). But such a bank will work (strum) at the slightest breath and in any direction of the wind.
2. Again, empirically (by the appearance of new molehills near the jerks), I found that rattling is felt by animals at a distance of no more than a meter in a circle. Based on the area of the site, you can roughly determine how many cans are required. I hope it is now clear that the case with a weather vane or a single Chinese electronic repeller is sheer nonsense.
3. The base on which the bank is put on must be metal. It can be composed of several parts, for example, by inserting a metal rod into the pipe, but with an indispensable condition: the part that will be in the ground should be as massive as possible. It is necessary to dig it into the ground as deep as possible. After all, it is from her that the sound spreads, unpleasant for moles.
But back to the moles on my site. It would seem that this is a victory! Live and rejoice from the heart! You can rejoice, but only partially. And here's why … Let's say I got rid of these harmful diggers, but the question is: for how long? I drove them away, but where should they go? Of course, only move to neighboring areas. But, suppose, and from there they will be expelled. They will move on and after a while they may well again be on my site. In a word, a kind of whirlwind turns out.
And so it happened … Twenty days after a complete lull, three molehills appeared on the onion bed. And soon two more on the potato garden (by the way, where the beans also grew). I don’t know how the moles were oriented, but they obviously made their way exactly where the strumming was not heard. Of course, I immediately put them on these new molehills. And for three months now there are no moles.
To avoid another invasion of moles, I intend to play it safe and build a circular "defense". To do this, I'm going to put scarers from beer cans around the entire perimeter of the site (35x40 meters) every 1.5-2 meters. True, the constant strumming is very depressing, especially for the one who works in the garden. But what to do: there is no choice - either moles and a warped vegetable garden, or a sound cacophony, but without annoying diggers.