There are many pests that make Oregon their home. One of the most frustratingly obvious is the mole. These pesky critters love to make mounds in your well maintained lawn. Moles in Oregon can be a major problem. We know this because of the amount of calls we get to come take care of customers mole problems. Let’s take a moment to discuss what moles are.
Moles are more closely related to anteaters, hedgehogs & even shrews, than they are to gophers or other rodents. Most of the moles closest relatives feed & live underground.
Moles can be active all year. These pesky critters have even been known to push up new mounds in the snow!! Moles try to store enough food to get through these cold months, but are not against tunneling in freezing temperatures.
While gophers prefer vegetation, moles prefer worms and grubs, and occasionally small insects. There are three types of mole in our region, but by far the most prevalent is the Townsend Mole. The range about 5-8 inches, depending somewhat on age, and they are the largest moles in North America. They can dig approximately 18 feet per hour, if needed, and if they are already inside a previously excavated tunnel, they can run up to 80 feet per minute forwards or backwards underground. Moles in Oregon seldom leave the protection of their tunnels and do not venture above ground unless they have to (fear of a predator, such as a snake, or flooding of tunnels).
When it comes to food, Moles are eating champions. A mole’s diet is mostly made up of earthworms and a few other smaller insects, but they will also dine on small amounts of vegetation or nuts if their regular food sources run scarce. A mole can eat up to a third of its body weight per day. In fact, one mole can eat 50 lbs of worms in a year. That would be like a human being somehow being able to eat nearly 60 lbs of food a day!
The range of adult moles varies widely. An average acre will accommodate a single male mole, sometimes including a female, as well. Males do not like their range to overlap with the range of other male moles. Females do not seem so particular about this. When their young are weaned, they’ll leave the nest (in a rare instance of above-ground travel), and generally begin their own runs within about 30-40 yards. A single, mature mole can make over 200 mounds in a single winter.
If you have any questions or concerns about moles in Oregon, or would like to setup a FREE inspection, there are numerous ways to contact us.
Call Emerald Pest Services to handle all of your Mole related needs.