Rodents—Fall’s Biggest Lawn Pests

A gopher seen in Northern Utah - Rentokil There are many signs of potential rodent activity that you might find in your yard: little dirt mounds starting to cluster on your lawn, holes popping up in the dirt in your yard, or unforeseen plant decay in your garden. All of these might mean that you’re currently hosting rodents, but how do you know which ones you’re dealing with? Moles, voles, and gophers are all common fall rodents in Northern Utah, and their burrowing can negate all of the hard work that you put in to keep your yard looking beautiful. To learn more about them and how to keep them away, read on for advice from the rodent experts at Rentokil!

What Are the Differences Between Moles, Voles, and Gophers?

All three of these animals are rodents that burrow in moist, cool soil looking for shelter and resources. They are all the most active in spring and fall when the right amount of rainfall creates optimal burrowing and feeding conditions. However, these rodents have a few features that set them apart. Besides their appearance (which can be hard to assess given that they spend most of their time underground), they are best told apart by their diets:

  • Gophers like to eat plant roots and bulbs. They will usually live under your lawn.
  • Voles are also herbivores but are much less picky. They are known to eat seeds, bulbs, tubers, grass, rhizomes, and even bark. This means that they are more likely to be seen at the surface.
  • Moles are carnivores, eating worms, grubs, and various regional insect species.

How to Do Your Own Rodent Control

After learning a bit more about these pests, you’re probably starting to think about the activity you’ve seen in your yard and which kind of rodent might be causing the disruption. Due to their limited above-ground activity, it can be hard to tell how you can take efforts to get them under control. One popular preventative approach is to plant thyme, sage, daffodils, or other plants with strong fragrances to ward them off and distract them from finding a food source.

If you’re already experiencing an infestation, though, you should choose a more active approach:

  1. Mix four tablespoons of a combination of castor oil and dish soap into a gallon of water, then pour the mixture into any burrowed holes in your lawn.
  2. Use gopher mesh or chicken wire to construct fences inside any holes.
  3. Set traps using carrots, apples, or peanut butter to lure them in.

Although these work for some people, we can’t guarantee that they’ll take care of your rodent problem.

Rodent Control Starts in Fall

As autumn starts to set in, rodents of all kinds in Northern Utah will be looking for an area providing shelter and resources that will last them until spring. If you want to get a head start on rodent prevention before winter comes, reach out to the rodent control experts at Rentokil. We have been helping residents in our area prepare to keep moles, voles, gophers, and more out of their homes for years, and can teach you how to stay on guard on your own. Contact us today for a free quote!

5 Signs of Moles or Gophers Living in Your Lawn

A mole found in Northern Utah - RentokilIf you find your yard torn up with tunnels, seemingly out of the blue, you have unfortunately attracted a mole or gopher problem. Moles and gophers are small mammals with prolific digging habits; they tear through the upper surfaces of our yards to create shelter and find food. Because they spend so much time underground, they can be hard to control. If you’re trying to figure out what’s wreaking havoc on your lawn in Northern Utah, read on for Rentokil’s expert identification tips.

Moles vs. Gophers in Northern Utah

Moles and gophers might be hard to spot, but when you do see them, they can be told apart fairly easily by these differences:

  • Moles are smaller than gophers, averaging 4 to 7 inches in length. Gophers can be anywhere from 5 to 14 inches in length.
  • Moles can be distinguished by their pink and pronounced hands and noses.
  • Gophers are much more territorial, so they are less likely to be found in pairs or groups.

5 Signs of Moles or Gophers in your Lawn or Garden

If you’re wondering whether the damage in your lawn or garden has been caused by gophers or moles, here are five signs of their activity:

  1. Mounds of dirt will show up overnight on your lawn or in your garden.
  2. Mole tunnels will cause damage to plant roots, leading to poor growth on the surface.
  3. When moles tunnel, they cause stones to come up to the surface of your lawn. If you aren’t careful, they can damage your lawnmower.
  4. Gophers create tunnels with 3-inch wide holes that extend up to six feet underground.
  5. If you find plants that have been eaten or partially pulled through the surface of your yard, you have found gopher activity.

Both moles and gophers can create eyesores and damage in your yard, so you should be able to tell if either is present on your property.

Mole and Gopher Control in Northern Utah

Moles and gophers have to be dealt with quickly so they don’t destroy your whole lawn or garden. For help getting rid of gophers or moles, ask your local pest control company. Our lawn pest control experts at Rentokil use efficient and effective mole and gopher control strategies to get rid of active vermin and protect you from future infestations. For a free quote or more information on our services, contact us today!