A page to record and share some of my thoughts, experiences, gratitude's and ramblings!
As we slowly start to head into autumn, mole movement tapers down. This year’s youngsters will have been “moved on” by mum and will go off to establish their own areas/runs.
Many of the youngsters will be taken by predators with only a small percentage of them going on to reach maturity and establish their own territories. The wandering mature males will have either taken over a vacant run, or evicted an existing resident and a lucky few might of made it back to their original territory.
For the next few weeks/months mole activity will drop off even further, especially if there is dry weather, which can force the moles into their deeper runs. All these factors come together to result in a general lack of mole activity i.e. less mole hills.
Once again I would like to thank all Molehunter clients for helping us to continue to support our chosen charity, Parkinson’s UK.
Where do I start …. 2020 has been a very different year for all of us due to all the restrictions placed upon us by lock down, fortunately I was able to continue with my mole catching activities which got me out and about and kept me sane!
This year has been good for the mole; a mild winter, followed by a warm wet spring period made for ideal breeding conditions for mole populations to expand - which they have done in their numbers.
During the breeding season the males leave their home runs and go off hunting for females. During these hunts the males can throw up new molehills leading the landholder to believe they have a mole when in actual fact, the mole is just passing through and has no intention of staying. I have had three such cases this summer when I arrived on site and set traps in suitable locations, only to discover that the were molehills and associated runs were not 'active'.
When the mole encounters a trap one of two things happen, the mole either gets caught or they sense that something isn’t quite right in the run, and blocks up the trap/tunnel with soil thus isolating itself from suspected danger. If I set traps in the ground and don’t catch a mole(s) or find the trap is clear of earth, then it’s safe to say that the mole hasn’t passed that way. This is certainly true of the period before and after the breeding season, when the males are on the move; often referred to as the “mole that never was”!
Fortunately as I operate on a strict “no catch – no fee” basis, so there is no charge to the landholder, unlike some catchers who charge by the visit.
The other period of “movement” in the population is when the female “evicts” the young from “the nest”, forcing them to start off runs/territories of their own. The explorations made by this new generation can lead to further disruption for the landholder. Fortunately as we are now well into August both these periods are behind us, so once the land has been cleared of moles at this time of year, there is unlikely to be any further uninvited diggings until next years breeding cycle starts it all off again.
In March this year I took the decision to donate 100% of the fees from my mole catching to Parkinsons UK. As of the end of July, this has reached £1335.00. I’d like to thank all the clients of Molehunter, for assisting me to raise this figure; a few of you have made generous donations to this fundraising cause over and above the mole catching fee, for which I am very grateful.