Vole Bait

Voles are herbivores and cause considerable damage to turf and other plants.  These animals are capable of reproducing rapidly, and can quickly overrun a lawn.  Voles create small burrows either in grass or dense shrub.  Small beaten paths in the lawn extend from these burrows.  These are called vole runways and are created when the vole forages for food.  Trapping is a popular method of control for smaller populations, but vole bait is preferred for larger infestations.

Most mice and rat baits can also be used as effective vole bait.  These baits are anticoagulants that kill the vole over multiple feedings.  This type of bait should be reapplied every couple of days.  Bait should be placed in concentrated areas in a broad runway.  However, if the population continues to increase, begin broadcasting the bait by placing it throughout all the runways.  Bait placed in the lawn poses a risk to birds, pets, and children.  Check the labels to ensure they can be used outside for voles.  To avoid poisoning animals other than voles, a vole bait station may be used.

Vole-specific bait contains zinc phosphides.  A single dose kills the vole.  This bait comes in the form of grains and pellets.  These vole baits are particularly dangerous to other animals, especially birds.  To avoid poisoning other animals, vole bait may also be placed in bait stations, as well as the entryway to vole burrows.  Voles may become shy of bait once it begins to kill their population.  If this becomes a problem, try varying the baits you set out.