Mole Hills or What?

Asked July 30, 2018, 9:02 AM EDT

In the past few years I have gotten a lot of moles in my yard. Several years ago I applied milky spore to combat grubs; this has probably reached the end of the advertised “20-year” effectiveness period. Along with the mole tunnels, that look like an old ladies varicose veins, running through my yard, I have seen these “hills,” see last two photos. Some of the hills are in line with what I am assuming mole tunnels, but others have not obvious tunnels leading to or from them. Do moles surface like this, or could it be some other type of varmint? 20180609 Disturbed earth, top view, with tennis ball to show size 20180609 Disturbed earth, side view, with tennis ball to show size I don’t like to apply chemicals to my lawn, so what else can I do to mitigate this disturbance to my lawn? I don’t mind the mole tunnels that much, but these hills are another story.

Anne Arundel County Maryland

1 Response

This looks like mole hills and tunnels. There are no easy solutions when it comes to mole control. Moles feed on a variety of soil insects like earthworms and grubs. They are more a nuisance in the spring and fall when soil moisture levels are higher and prey are closer to the surface of the soil. It has been very wet due to excessive rains and it is easy for them to dig and feed.
Milky spore has only targets the Japanese beetle and there are other grubs that live in the lawn. Research shows that it is has not provided consistent levels of control in various university field trials. We do not recommend using a grub control for moles. They will just feed on other insects like earthworms.

Moles usually move on when their food supply and habitat changes. Activity often stops on its own so in many cases control is not needed. Tamp down raised tunnels with your foot whenever they appear and the ground is not soggy. Some reseeding may be required in the early fall. As a last resort you can use a lethal trap to control moles. For more information see publication on Nuisance Wildlife for information on moles