If you are landscaper or just enthusiastic about this you might already know that there are a number of pests and parasites that often unleash havoc on your otherwise well tended gardens. It is therefore no wonder that those lawns we sometimes covet in our neighborhoods may have cost the owners days of hard work and may be sleepless nights from infestation threats. This is apart from the cost that you may incur if you are the owner of such a lawn on professional pest control service providers. Sometimes this process is painstakingly slow and often the damage is just that bad. Among the culprits are the mole and the vole.
The two sounds quite alike but you will be surprised that they are in fact very distinct. The latter also called the meadow mice may not be as common either. But what is obvious is the damage that they cause that even a layman can identify. Because voles do an underground job they are hardly detectable unless of course you are the keen eye. If you are thinking of controlling voles effectively it may be necessary to understand first how they carry out their damage after which you can effectively control them.
Voles are good tunnel constructors just like their sister pest the mole. Often you will notice their runaways that are approximately two inches across. On closer inspection you will perhaps be able to identify the foot prints because voles do their thing in large numbers. Having noticed these two particular identifiers you probably need just one more thing to ascertain that what you are about to deal with is not a mole but a vole.
Voles and moles: How to differentiate between them
Naturally any successful line of attack to eradicate pests on your farm, lawns and gardens is the use of the prescribed methods and ingredients. However it becomes confusing for you if the pests you are suspecting have similar ways of behavior. In this case you must be keen and look out for some cues that will give you the exact identity of what you are dealing with. In this way you can effectively go ahead and do the pest control.
This is of course the case should you desire to control the pest by yourself, otherwise you also have the option of hiring the pest control service providers who can also do the job professionally. It is noteworthy at this point to know that moles and voles show forth similar habitation signatures. Typically you will see the runaways and this is perhaps the first part that requires careful scrutiny.
Moles are known for creating two types of runaways.
The conspicuous ones will include raised ridges that run across your lawn. The other is less visible because they are below the surface and act as interconnection channels for the mole colony. So if you are after voles it might be worth noting that these ones don’t build mounds. However voles create runaways similar to what moles do.
Once you have your finger on the culprit you can now deduce how best to handle the situation. Some of the pertinent questions you need to ask yourself include what is the most effective yet environmentally friendly technique or solution to the menace at hand. It may be worthwhile to employ a method and product that will not interfere much with the beauty of your lawn.
Now having identified that voles are present, you may need to consider the best preventive measure you can put in place. The advantage of applying the preventive measures is that you can easily incorporate the natural pest control approaches. Obviously this type of control serves you and your environment well by reducing any contamination or poisonings.
Voles often burrow into the rooting systems of the plant life on your landscape and this may eventually choke and kill the plant that is infested. The damage carried out by these voles is extended to flowers, tree trunks, potatoes among many others. Furthermore these rodents can leave an unwelcoming sight because of the runaways they create.
Beating the voles by using Natural Pest Control
Thinking of integrated pest management (IPM) well voles take advantage of untended lawns to cause havoc. Hence you can star by frequently weeding your garden and reducing excessive vegetation cover by over planting. It is also mandatory to keep your lawns mowed and hence remove any likelihood of voles’ infestation.
While you are mulching do not place the mulch very close to the base of the tree just to avoid these gnawing rodents from damaging your tree trunks. Amazingly these pests are undeterred by snow and so clearing your garden and lawns off snow during winter will do the trick.
Sometimes the infestation may be quite advanced in which case you have to use the Havahart live-traps, as well as vole repellants and poisons. If the process is purely a do it yourself exercise then you will need to ensure the following:
- Exterminate the voles you suspect are damaging your garden and lawn
- Repel the voles or keep them away from your lawn and garden with fences.
- Carry out a live removal of the voles from your yard.
Some of the chemicals commonly used to accomplish the eradication include the Zinc phosphide-based ZP Gopher Bait. Others like d-Con or Rodex that are blood anticoagulants can also be used. Generally the extent of damage determines the cost of control and prevention.