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Moles, love them or hate them?

 
Posts: 39
Location: Unincorporated East Bay Area, CA
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Recently I have been seeing more and more mole hills and tunnels in the garden, I assume it's because of all the mulch and compost I have been adding to the soil over the past 2 years (I have a small urban garden, and am following modified "back to Eden" and permaculture principles). My husband wants to find and kill them, but what I have noticed is as they move around and create their tunnels, they appear to be helping to radically improve the soil. I am in the bay area, had an almost dead back yard, and had rock hard clay soil..now half the yard is like walking on sponges. Most of my planting is in raised beds and mounds of some sort, and nothing has died because of the moles.

Am I crazy, or are my little mole friends tilling my soil and actually improving it? Should I say thank you?
 
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Location: West Tennessee
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Kali Hermitage wrote:... I assume it's because of all the mulch and compost I have been adding to the soil over the past 2 years....



Hi Kali, here's what I believe is going on. The mulch and compost, in an indirect way, had an effect. Moles eat worms and grubs. The mulch and compost has improved your soil, attracting worms which they themselves further benefit the soil, and the moles have found a source of food in your garden.

Am I crazy, or are my little mole friends tilling my soil and actually improving it? Should I say thank you?



I think this depends on who is asked. I believe moles play a role in the soil food web as that is their habitat. I doubt they will eat all the worms. If this mole activity is new, it may seem like a lot of activity with a new found abundant food source,  but the playing field will level on its own, and that's what I believe in, just letting nature find its own harmonious balance.
 
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Love them - they eat slugs, cutworms, and even mice. I read that they eat their own weight in insects daily and will starve if they go more than a few hours without food. They can tunnel 75 yards in a single night. My 1940's book "American Wild Life" says that at the time in France a fine was imposed on anyone caught killing a mole.
 
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I recently had one burned off my back.  Too much running around without a shirt back in my teens.  Sunscreen?  Didn't exist back then.

Oh . . . you meant . . . nevermind.
 
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