Mole tunnels in your yard are a sure sign that you are dealing with a pesky and reckless burrowing animal. If you do not adequately treat your mole problem, your entire lawn could end up being torn up. There are lots of remedies out there explaining how to get rid of moles in your yard. Our step-by-step guide gives you ideas for natural home remedies as well as ways to permanently handle the mole situation in your yard. Take a look at our step-by-step guide on how to get rid of moles in your yard.
What are Moles?
Moles are small burrowing animals with very poorly developed eyesight. As hard as it is for these critters to see, they have an impressive sense of touch and sensitive snouts. They dig and claw away at the soil to find food to eat. The small cylindrical bodies are furry, but the paws are quite large, considering their overall size. Moles feed off of insects, grubs, and earthworms.
How To Know You Have a Mole Problem in Your Yard and Gardens
If you have never seen an issue with moles in your yard before, you will likely notice when it happens almost immediately. There are some tell-tale signs that you are experiencing a mole issue in your yard, and the quicker you act on it, the less damage the moles will do. As homeowners, it’s important to remember that even one or two moles in the yard can make a big impact.
Moles hills are going to look like tunnels running under the surface of your lawn. Some of these will look like raised grass, but when you step on them, they may collapse. Molehills won’t have much of a pattern to them; they can run in circles or across certain sections of the turf.
Patches of Dead Grass
Sometimes dead grass will show up in certain areas where the moles are destroying the roots of the turf. Most of the time, the molehills will also be present in and around these patches of dead grass.
Chunks of Dirt
Where the moles enter and exit their tunnels, there are often large chunks of dirt from digging. Sometimes you can see an entrance to the hole, but often times it will just be a large chunk of dirt.
Mounds of dirt across the turf will also be another sign that you have some moles hard at work. This is typically going to be seen in the early spring, but there is no specific time period for moles, and you should always be on the lookout for these signs. You won’t need to look too hard, as the garden and turf will show clear signs if you have a mole problem.
Ways to Get Rid of Moles
To get rid of and prevent moles, you will have six basic steps that can be used in conjunction with each other or on their own:
- Eliminating their food source: if the moles have nothing to eat, they will leave
- Properly water your lawn: overwatering the lawn will make it subject to fungus and insects, and the moles will come in to destroy
- Apply several repellents: whether you use an insecticide to remove the food source or mole repellents, properly treating the lawn is an important step
- Bait traps: when the moles take over, be prepared to poison them with bait
- Kill moles with traps: moles traps come in several different styles
- Hire a professional: if you can’t get your landscaping back to the way it was and mole activity is not stopping, a professional pest control company can typically help
The two primary methods for taking care of a mole problem in your yard are to use natural ways or to kill moles using mole baits or mole traps.
7 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Moles
Getting rid of moles following these natural methods will typically work quite well for a mild mole infestation. If this has been going on for quite some time, there is a high chance that the natural ways will be a bit more difficult to establish full mole control. This, however, can be a great place to start.
Kill Grubs and Other Food Sources
Grub control is a smart way to help move moles out of your yard. If they have nothing to feed on, they will move to another spot. Moles are insectivores and will go after insects and invertebrates in your turf. Grubs, on the other hand, will be eating your grassroots so the combination of the two critters is detrimental to your yard.
Cayenne pepper will be an irritant for the moles. As we mentioned, the moles will make runways across your lawn, and if they encounter cayenne pepper along the way, it will bother their sensitive noses and send them in a different direction.
Castor oil is one of the most popular natural ways of mole removal. Take castor oil and mix it with dish soap in a ratio of 3:1 (three parts castor oil, one part dish soap). After you have your mixture, you can then take four tablespoons of it and put it into a one-gallon sprayer with water. Fill the spray completely with water and 4 tablespoons of your mixture and apply it to the area where you are noticing moles.
Natural Commercial Repellents
There are some natural mole repellents that contain castor oil and other natural repellents. These can be put in the ground around the area of the mole infestation, and they are not intended to kill the moles. Some of these are granular materials that you will leave in a flower bed or areas of your turf.
Some flowers such as daffodils, marigolds, alliums, and castor beans are not preferred by moles, and they will stay out of your lawn because of the strong scent of the plant.
Coffee grounds or granules can be spread out on the turf where the moles are doing damage. Coffee is quite strong, and the smell and texture will keep moles from wanting to enter this area of your lawn. When you just start noticing the raised ridges in your lawn, try the coffee grounds and see if pushes them away.
Ultrasonic spikes are placed in the yard, emitting noise and vibration that is not pleasing to moles. Most humans cannot notice anything from the ultrasonic spikes, but it will also keep away other animals such as voles, mice, and rats.
Conventional Ways to Kill Moles in Your Yard
If you have tried the natural method, but these tiny diggers are causing more and more problems, you may need to take a more advanced method of removal and kill the moles.
Use a Kill Trap
A kill trap is placed in the ground in the middle of one of the tunnels. As we have mentioned, the small eyes of the mole are not very good at noticing a block in their tunnel. As they bump into the metal part of the trap that is underground, it will instantly kill the mole.
Mole bait will look like a grub, but it has insecticide and poison inside the bait that will kill the moles. To bait moles, you first must identify if they have a shallow or a deep tunnel, as you will have to place this food inside their tunnels. Use a wooden dowel to push the mole bait down to the appropriate level, and then wait a few days to see if the moles are still digging.
Why Your Yard Attracts Moles
Now that you have some of the most common ways to remove moles. You will want to prevent them from now on. The main reason your yard attracts moles is that you have problems with your turf. These turf-related issues will attract things like moles, gophers, armadillos, and voles.
The main food sources for moles are earthworms, grubs, and lawn insects. If your lawn is properly treated by a professional or a DIY process, the moles will have no reason to stay on your property. Look for grub control products as well as ways to control ants and mole crickets, as these will also attract the moles.
How to Make Your Yard a Pest-Free Zone
If you are tired of dealing with moles and other pests in your yard, there are a few options you have to make your yard a pest-free zone.
- Start with proper maintenance: if your grass, shrubs, and trees are not properly maintained, you will struggle to have a pest-free zone in your yard. Look for ways to improve overall yard maintenance.
- Fertilize and treat grass: grass needs the proper nutrients to stay healthy and keep pests away, and the proper fertilization procedures can help.
- Use Insecticides: insecticides applied to your yard can help with a variety of things such as grubs, larvae of many insects, fleas, crickets, and more; these insecticides can be applied by homeowners or professionals.
- Monitor closely: keeping a close eye on your property can help prevent issues before they become a significant problem. Take walks around your property every few days and inspect for any problems.
- Call in the professionals: know when to throw in the towel and hand this job over to the professionals; they can help make a big difference in the health of your yard.
Use Professional Lawn Pest Service to Get Rid of Moles
The best professional lawn service can help you get rid of moles in your yard. The professional service will ensure that your grass remains healthy and that no animals are interested in feeding off of your unhealthy turf.
How Professionals Get Rid of Moles
Professional lawn services will also sometimes set traps and help you kill moles; other times, they will use more natural repellents. The professionals can tell how bad a mole infestation is and what level of intervention must be taken. For many homeowners, the thought of killing moles is not pleasing, and having professionals take care of this is the better option. Many times professionals won’t need to get rid of moles as they will use proper preventative measures.
Top Recommended Lawn Pest Control Companies
The best lawn pest control companies can not only handle a mole problem, but they will be able to tackle any sort of animal or insect infestation in your yard or home. The best of these companies is Terminix, as they have a very strong history in the industry and impressive overall customer reviews. Terminix will come to your home with more than 90 years of industry experience and give you a free quote on how to handle your lawn pest issues.
Our top recommended pest control companies are:
- Terminix: Best Overall
- Orkin: Best Emergency Service
- Bulwark: Best Customer Service
- Aptive: Most Customizable
- TruGreen: Best Lawn Pest Control
- Hawx Pest: Best Localized Pest Control
Hopefully, you now have a better idea of how to get rid of moles. We have tried a variety of these methods, and the natural ways tend to work quite well as long as you start with them from the very beginning of the problem. Once larger populations of moles move in, the process of removing all moles from the property becomes much more advanced. Keep in mind that the mole issue is there for the food source, and if you can eliminate that, you will eliminate the moles.
FAQs About Getting Rid of Moles
How do I get rid of a mole on my own?
Yes, often you can. There are a number of different ways to get rid of a mole, including setting a bait trap, a kill trap, or using natural methods like mothballs and coffee grounds.
What is the fastest way to get rid of moles naturally?
The fastest way to get rid of moles naturally is to use a combination of dish soap, castor oil, and water in a small sprayer. Spray the area where the moles have been damaging your turf, and they should start leaving your yard alone.
How do you get rid of a mole overnight?
Getting rid of a mole overnight is possible with a kill trap or an ultrasonic spike. The natural ways to get rid of moles could take a few days or more. Mole bait will also take more than a day to eliminate the moles in your yard.
Why do I have moles in my yard?
Moles are in your yard because they feed off the insects that unknowingly destroy your turf. Although you can’t see this from above ground, you likely have grubs and other insects under the surface that are feeding the moles.
What is the best mole killer?
The best mole killer is the TomCat mole bait. This product is very easy to install, and you will not need to set a trap to remove the moles. The fake grubs look real to the moles, and they will ingest them and die; this mole killer is affordable and an easy solution for many homeowners.