Garden Mole Killer for Hire?
RKManx takes over garden patrol, digs moles, watches tractor

By Mary K. Hamner
Journal Correspondent

Interesting isn't it-how someone's cast off animal can worm their way into your life, how gradually, daily adjustments are made. You need to be home at a certain time to "feed the cat', or make arrangements for a cat sitter. Sometimes I wonder who's the pet here!

First off there's that initial investment with the Vet. Nobody had budgeted for that had they? After that, and the basic equipment, cat food, cat carrier. I really knew I was slipping when I came home with a cat bed! Learned later that the bed was a useless expense because RK opts to sleep on my car. Another adjustment to be made- cats tracks all over my car!

If I forget to put the lawnmower in at night, I find RK sitting expectantly on the seat early next morning, like what makes him think that I want to do gardening work today? Habitually, I wander through the yard to check out what the deer ate or what the armadillos rooted up. I stop to pull a weed or two while RK tries to attack my hands. Routinely, I back the car out of the garage for a quick cat-track- removal wash job and that's when I find RK's mole offering.

I find almost daily one or two of the small burrowing insectivores (family Talpidae), so many I've lost count. The moles, brought in by RK, have velvety blue-black to gray mohair like fur, a slender snout, needle like teeth, with flattened feet, claws, and inconspicuous ears. Although they are the bane of many gardeners, research indicates that aside from the tunnels they make in the lawn in search of insects and earthworms, they actually do little plant damage.

However, this small burrowing creature can forage tunnels just under the surface at an estimated ten to twenty feet per hour. It has been reported that moles can dig up to 100 feet of tunnel in a day, and many homeowners do find them a problem. Many home remedy approaches have been tried over the years to combat the mole. Desperate homeowners and gardeners have tried placing various irritating materials in their runways such as broken glass, razor blades, bleach, moth-balls and even human hair. Some have hooked up their car's exhaust system to mole tunnels; others have pumped hundreds of gallons of water into the tunnels. One source says this, "Aside from relieving frustrations, home remedy approaches have little value in controlling moles."

So, humm, maybe my cat has retail value. My sign goes up today. MOLE KILLER FOR HIRE.