At this season of the year many of our far- mers and gardners are pestered with moles burrowing in their fields and gardens, and eating up young andtender roots oi plants and herbs. Some directions regarding the modes of destroying these creatures, will, we believe, be very acceptable to many of our readers at this time. The principles of mole catching are found- ed on the following facts :—" A mole in form- ing its perpendicular passages under ground, throws back the mould which it removes to- wards the surface, and thus forms hills.— Upon every new change of place a mole raises three, lour, six or more hills according to its age, consequently all the mole-hills formed by one mole communicate by subterranean passages with one another. If a tunnel or passage jecently lormed by-a mole is opened by an instrument, the mole will in a few minutes return to close it, in order to secure itself irom danger and the external air. It constructs over the aperture an arch of loose mould, and mends thg tunnels as a plumber mends a lead pipe, and should this new molehill be broken down, the mole will return to repair it. The male mole is stronger than the female, and raises a greater number of hills, and larger ones. Young moles form only long covered ways at the surface; when they begin to make hills they are smill and arranged zig zag, without regularity. The hours of working for moles are at SUL rise, about 9 A. M., at noon, at 3 P. M., and at sunset. It is at sunrise and sunset, however, when they work with the greatest vigor. It is difficult to take moles except when they are at work, and the most favorable time tor catching them is in the spring; they should be vigorously attacked at the present time, during their working hours, and sunrise is the best time. In watching for a mole, care must be exercised to make no noise by stamping or beating. Should a person be near a mole-hill when the mole stirs the mould, let him then, with his* tee, bteak into the passage between that-and the next mole hill, and let him with a little earth close up the passage at the aperture made with his hoe j the mole will then be imprisonend between the mole-hill and the place where his passage has been broken into and stopped up. Il the earth of tha hill is fresh and newly raised, it may be concluded that a mole is within it, except when an aperture is left in the centre, which is an evidence that the mole has left his residence for a better. By pouring in enough of water into the tunnels between the* mole hills, the animal can always be forced out. When a number of fresh mole hills are found together they should be vigorously attacked with a hoe by removing them and opening up the passages communicating among them, when the mole will be sure to be found within, but the most simple way to catch moles is to confine them between their passages as has been described. A close attention to these facts will soon enable any farmer to rid his farm of moles, especilaly if he has a terrier dog to assist him.
This article was originally published with the title "Moles" in Scientific American 8, 32, 256 (April 1853)