Most of us know the telltale signs of moles in the yard, tunneling and mounds of dirt pushed upward from below the yard’s surface. The mounds of dirt can be anywhere from the size of a child’s fist to the size of a large mixing bowl. The tunneling is seen when traversing the lawn, as winding paths under the grass.


Pit Traps

The pit trap is a simple, free way to catch moles and release them far away from your lawn. You must first find an active mole tunnel. This is easily accomplished by finding an area of tunneling and step firmly upon it so as to cave it in. If it is back the following morning, it is an active tunnel, and may be used for trapping moles. Once you’ve determined that a tunnel is active, you will then dig down into the tunnel itself carefully, using a small shovel or trowel. Using a small coffee can or other small receptacle for measure, dig down under the tunnel’s floor the same distance as the receptacle. (The object is to place the coffee can under the tunnel’s floor, so that the mole will step into it and be caught.) Then cover over the hole in the lawn with a small board. And wait. Check under the board every morning until the mole is caught, then take it for release in a park or elsewhere—away from your yard!

Store-bought Traps

There are three main types of traps for moles, but one must consider the characteristics of each in order to decide which is best for your purposes. Efficiency (will it work?), safety (will it harm the mole, or anyone who may accidentally step on it?), cost per trap, and longevity (can it be reused?) are the main factors to consider. The three types are the spear-type mole trap, the Out O’Sight mole trap, and the NoMol® trap. The spear-type trap can be easily found in almost any hardware store. You must not allow children near it lest they step on it and get hurt. The Out O’Sight trap is very powerful, but can be tricky to set and un-set in order to move it around. The NoMol® trap is less well-known, but very effective and safe, as it sets totally below the level of the lawn, into the mole tunnels.


Most of the commercial repellents contain some amount of just three main ingredients: cayenne pepper, castor oil, and dish soap. Therefore, it is fairly simple to create your own blend of these three ingredients and spray it all around and inside of the tunnels. This would require you’re digging several small holes along the tunnels, spraying inside, and then covering over the holes. The ingredients act as irritants to the moles, which will soon leave for more comfortable living conditions. You may also choose to plant such flowers or herbs as chocolate lilies or garlic. Moles have a very strong distaste for these plants and will soon go elsewhere.


If done correctly, this method is much more permanent in the war against moles in the lawn. You must dig a two-foot-deep furrow all around your property. This is then lined with fine wire mesh to keep the moles from digging through and entering your property. Some people go one step further and line the furrow with gravel or even clay balls around the wire mesh to give more protection.


If you want the moles gone, but do not want to put forth as much effort as the preceding methods, you may want to try using a variety of devices that will irritate the moles. While there are surely battery operated devices that will emit sounds and vibration that will drive the moles away, a simple option to try is placing pinwheels all along the moles’ tunnels and hope for a windstorm!

Read the How to get rid of moles page for helpful information and to learn more about HOW CAN I RID MY YARD OF MOLES, WITHOUT KILLING THEM?


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