Are Moles Rodents? No, But Voles Are! | The Hypertufa Gardener

Are Moles Rodents? No, But Voles Are!

Are Moles Rodents?  I know I have had my fair share of problems with rodents this year. Especially the squirrels and chipmunks. All of these animals, and there must be hundreds just in my yard, seem to like nothing better than to dig in my planters and bury walnuts. I have small walnut trees growing all over. If I pull them up, there is a nut still attached!

Are moles rodents? No !

 

And now enters the moles! Earlier this year I noticed that the grass was showing little raised ridges meandering across the lawn but specifically headed to my shade garden bed next to the garage. These little varmints were making tunnels and heading straight to the garden beds. These beds are raised a bit and surrounded by the sidewalk and some retaining wall bricks. But the little moles just plow their way straight through and apparently under the sidewalk and right into the beds.

I understand that these animals are attracted to grubs in the soil and we haven’t treated our lawn for  grubs this year. But my neighbor has fought them and tried to keep them out of his vegetable garden. Maybe his success has given me a new arrival into my garden?

Moles peeking above the ground.

I have not seen one of the moles and I understand that is because they are most likely to stay underground in their borrows. It is most obvious that one has “come up for air” when I see some piled-up soil in a little heap. I am surprised that the little critters can dig in our hard clay soil, but the varmint is determined I guess. Maybe that is why the garden bed is its objective. The soil in there is loose and rich and holds a lot of earthworms. The mole eats these worms ( sad to say), but they also eat other pests in the garden. In the long haul, I guess it is a good thing for the moles that they serve a useful purpose.  I want them to eat all the grubs they can!

A mouse is a rodent

I have seen a few mice in the garden and really think they are kind of cute. But I still don’t want the skittering of mice through the dry fall leaves and think that it might run up my jeans or something. It probably avoids me as much as I avoid it. There are also small voles which almost look like the mice. Voles are also called Meadow Mice even though they are not exactly mice. The vole looks different than the mouse. You can see the main differences in these two photos I have labeled. But in a panic situation, I will run if it comes and not stop to inspect which critter it is. I will just get away from it……..as fast as possible.

The more "homely" vole.

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Yes, I do think the mouse is more of a cute character. That must be why we have Mickey Mouse instead of Vickie Vole. It just wouldn’t be the same, right?  We usually have some of the mice sneaking into the house. So far, they get into the basement somehow and we use the little Glue Boards that they run through and get stuck and die. I guess they have a scared-me-to-death experience. My husband is in charge of that. I usually never know about it. We have a contract with the Orkin Pest Control and they take care of those things if we run into a problem. But the sticky traps work fine………….and they get spiders too. Don’t like spiders in the house !

Side Note:  I have seen photos on the FaceBook where people have trapped SNAKES on these Glue Boards !  Oh, I don’t think so. I would move into a hotel until they were gone!

Thanks for listening…or reading in this case. And doesn’t that mole have nice nails?  I wonder where she gets them done? LOL

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Kim, The Hypertufa Gardener

Hi, I am Kim and thank you so much for visiting my magazine! I am a gardener and a hypertufa maker. If you came here to learn about hypertufa, I have a lot of information. But I also write about flower gardening and using succulents which are great drought-tolerant plants.

Of course, I have some recipes and some random family concerns which I hope interest you too! Please page through the Magazine and find what you like! and Subscribe!

I also have a YouTube channel called Kim’s Gardens where you can see my hypertufa as I make them. ( See My About Page)

 

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