Moles are subterranean mammals that tunnel beneath lawns in search of food. Lawns provide moles with their favorite meals, mainly earthworms and white grubs. Moles in lawn are easy to spot. When moles look for food they dig shallow surface tunnels. They effectively “swim” through the soil under the grass. This forms visible ridges directly above the surface tunnels. When a mole digs a lair for the winter, it digs deep vertical tunnels. This forms a mole mound as the mole pushes dirt up from below. Mole mounds are conical and situated directly above the tunnel opening. This differs from a gopher mound, which is situated to the side of the tunnel.
Surface tunnels destroy the landscaping of lawns. It can be difficult to mow over these ridges and they appear unsightly. Moles do not directly eat plants, but their tunneling can destroy them. As a mole searches for earthworms beneath the lawn, it exposes the roots of the grass as well as other yard plants. This causes the plants to dry out and die. However, moles can be beneficial by eating white grub and other insect pests, as well as by naturally aerating the lawn. If left alone, a mole may continue to inhabit a lawn and dig surface tunnels in search of food.
The most effective method of mole control is trapping. The three main traps work in a similar manner. These traps are the Scissor Jawed, Harpoon, and Choker Loop traps. Traps are placed directly above surface tunnels and are set off when a mole uses the tunnel and disturbs the roof. General use rodent bait is ineffective with moles because moles do not eat grain. Effective mole bait is in the form of a worm and is infused with Bromethalin. Bait should be placed in surface tunnels.