Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Moles, Moles, Moles...

Moles must be one of the most annoying things for any golf course superintendent, they certainly are for me ! Moles have the tendency to push up mole heaps in the worst places and can really spoil the look of any great looking golf course.

The have there young in March to the end of April so there young are now strong and are running around feeding and pushing up mole heaps everywhere. Moles have a hairless, pointed snout and small eyes. These animals are insectivores and feed primarily on grubs and earthworms. For the most part, moles live in seclusion and underground burrows and rarely come to the surface. These mammals are solitary and rarely do more than 2 or 3 moles occupy the same burrow system. Moles have a very high metabolic rate and, therefore, have to consume large amounts of food. Studies of moles on golf courses have shown that an infested area will contain about one mole per acre. Because of the extensive tunneling and length of the tunnels, it may appear that many moles occupy an area. Moles dig elaborate tunnel systems and have feeding runways barely beneath the grass. That is why a mole on a golf course can stick out like a sore thumb. The ridge is elevated and easily visible. The tunnel system will have many meters of traveling tunnels within several centimeters of the ground surface. As the weather cools, moles will retreat into their deeper tunnels, up to 5 feet beneath the surface.

We have found 2-3 different species on the course.. They cost golf courses thousands every year by superintendents spending money on mole poison, traps, gas and mole catchers... At Durban country club we have an employee called Chili a border collie (sheep dog) ... he together with the other staff members are being incentivized when catching a mole and the mole heap numbers have dropped tremendously in the last year he has been with us. We also have found that as you see them pushing soil they are easely caught ... just ask chili !

Well done my boy !!!


  1. hay rather then kill those understudied golden moles give them to your local FIsh and Game office so they can be moved and studyed

  2. My dog isn't interested, dammit! Do you know any mole catcher(s) in the Durban area? I'm in Queensburgh, with plenty moles.