10 to 14 feet per hour.
Yes. A mole tunnels under your lawn at that speed.
The moles turn your lawn into a strange looking checkerboard of brown and green lines in just days.
Moles give you little volcano mounds of dirt from their tunnels to trip on and soft spots to twist an ankle whereas vole tunnels remain unseen.
Lets learn what you can do about it right now.
First, figure out which tunnels have active moles. Press down a section of raised earth and if it is re-raised within 24 hours, you have moles traveling through. That means you need to install a toll station where you access a toll penalty for travel across your property. The toll needs to be severe...so they stop their trips under your turf.
USE TRAPS: Follow the crowd. Kill traps are the hot method.
- Live traps: If you can catch a mole this way you are very fortunate and unusual, and then you have a choice. Kill it while it is in the trap by drowning or shooting....or relocating it where it will die anyway from predators...but you won't see it happen.
- Kill traps: This is how the farmers have done it since metal was invented. There are traps that specifically target moles called scissor or plunger or harpoon traps. Some designs have steel spikes, 8 or so, or a choker loop that is triggered by a passing mole in a tunnel and it kills them quickly. The choker style is reported to be the most effective. You get one. You reload it, and kill another. And so on, till no more moles.
VIBRATIONS: No not a rock band you have to hire...but ground vibrations are something they don't like. The Indians used to take a machete type blade and stick it in the ground and bat it back and forth which sends out a vibration in all directions. A easier solution is to install a small windmill whereupon the rotating fan sends the vibration message as it turns. There are commercial products that do the same thing very efficiently.
SOUNDS: Sonic and ultrasonic sound commercial devices are also somewhat successful in repelling animals including moles. These devices are available locally and on the internet.
FLOODING, SMOKING or GASSING THE TUNNELS: Sulfur or gas based smoke bombs, and flooding with water have limited effectiveness because when moles sense danger, like chipmunks, they block the tunnel and go a different route. Vehicle exhaust piped into a tunnel has also been reported as successful.
POISON: Commercial Castor Oil and chemical based mole repellents are available, just follow their directions which are usually...spread them and water them down-effective for a few months or place the poison into a tunnel.
ORGANIC REPELLENTS: Daffodils, Squill and Crown Imperial are plants that repel some moles. Others are Mexican Marigold, Castor Bean and the Mole Plant (caper spurge). These last 2 plants are poisonous...so think safe if you want to employ them. (NO COST TIP) Introducing nasty smelly stuff like kerosene or urine soaked rags or a perfume that you don't use into a tunnel and they will move away from it as it hurts their sensitive noses. Over time, you could slowly herd them to your neighbors yard if you don't get along with them (just kidding...I think).
ANIMAL CONTROL: Fox, dogs, cats, hawks, and raccoon's and a few other similar animals can or will help control the mole population by either just playing with their catch, bringing it to you proudly, or devouring it.
FENCING: In this instance the wire fence is installed underground to a vertical depth exceeding 12 inches. A lot of work for you. There are better ways you should consider. But they are your moles and its your call.