random dirt piles in my yard

Asked November 23, 2014, 4:35 PM EST

What causes these random dirt piles all over my yard? Some of the piles seem too big to be caused by a mole. Near some of the piles there are trails like a mole would make but near others I don't see any trails. Oftentimes the piles line up in a semi-straight line. Any ideas on how to get rid of whatever makes these piles? Any natural enemies that I can persuade to hang around my property - owls, hawks?

Clinton County Michigan

1 Response

Good Evening and thank you for using Ask an Expert. There could be many answers to your problem. I am enclosing some information on three culprits. That's a start

  1. Burrowing Animals

    • The bane of gardeners and landscapers, pocket gophers and moles burrow underground, building mounds at the entrance to their tunnel systems. Pocket gophers feast on plant bulbs, vegetables and grass roots. In their search for grubs and earthworms, moles can leave a yard littered with holes and dirt hills. The least-toxic approach for treatment and prevention of burrowing-animal damage is remove the food source or make the area inhospitable. Using toxic chemicals against gophers and moles can harm pets and other wildlife that come in contact with the chemical or affected animals.


    • Ants provide beneficial pest control for yards. They feed on insects that cause lawn damage and pose no threat to grass. Ants only become problematic when they deposit soil granules excavated from nests below the ground and those granules grow into hills. Control the number of anthills during nesting season by aerating the soil and scattering a fine layer of dirt over the grass. Adjust the lawnmower to a higher setting and rake anthills frequently.

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    • Earthworms can spoil a beautiful landscape with piles of dirt that result in a rough lawn. However, these creatures actually benefit the yard by aerating soil. Earthworms create dirt piles as they pass through the soil and deposit castings, or excretions, on the grass surface. High in organic nutrients, these castings serve as fertilizer for lawns. Homeowners may notice an increase in earthworm dirt piles during the moderate temperatures and moist periods of spring and fall. Typically, earthworms cause no grass damage unless present in large colonies.

Read more : http://www.ehow.com/info_8124118_causes-piles-dirt-yard.html

I hope this helps answer your question. If you don't think it's any of these three let me know and I will try to find the solution.