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When a mole digs a tunnel where does the dirt go?


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#1 Dee Lightner

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 02:25 PM

Does the mole eat the dirt? Does the mole dig for a while and then carry the dirt out of the tunnel and go back in and dig again?

Where does the dirt go?

One site I found says a mole can dig a tunnel 300 feet long in one night. That's a lot of dirt. I am visualizing digging a tunnel and I cannot think of any way to get the dirt out except to carry it out in some manner. So how does a mole do it?
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#2 bj_1

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 03:11 PM

In long, deep tunnels the dirt is compacted into the walls by the mole's body. In shorter tunnels the mole can turn around and push some of the loose soil out with its nose. And of course at tunnel entrances, the dirt is kicked out by the hind feet into mole hills.

What a curious question.


I've seen mole hills and moles (they're nocturnal) ... one evening at dusk I was checking my veggie garden and literally saw one of my plants "disappear" into a new hole. I hope the mole liked the baby egg plant. LOL "Now ya see it ... WHOOPS!!! There it went!!!!" :eek::D

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#3 Ravenchamp

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 04:03 PM

what do you think the mounds are? mole poop
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#4 zenwalk

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 05:08 PM

Making a mountain out of a mole hill.

I dunno where all the dirt goes. Never seems to be a commensurate amount of dirt to match what must be an underground labrynth.

I want to know where the Chinese bury their dead. Maybe there's a connection.
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#5 zenwalk

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 05:32 PM

I understand that's where the Spanish tile roof comes from.

DL is correct in wondering what happens to the dirt. We have moles all over the place and the mounds at the entrances don't correspond in size to what instinct would tell you.

An experiment is in order.
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#6 CPR4LIFE

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 05:43 PM

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#7 Justthefax

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 05:45 PM

The moles eat the insects and will destroy a lawn if left untreated. Get rid of the insects and the moles will go away.
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#8 zenwalk

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 05:47 PM

The moles eat the insects and will destroy a lawn if left untreated. Get rid of the insects and the moles will go away.

Yeah but in the meantime what do they do with the dirt? Dig other holes?

I wonder about the bugless lawns keeping moles out. We have no yard and that doesn't seem to stop them.
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#9 shutout

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 06:03 PM

A mole hole
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#10 Justthefax

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 06:18 PM

Yeah but in the meantime what do they do with the dirt? Dig other holes?

I wonder about the bugless lawns keeping moles out. We have no yard and that doesn't seem to stop them.



Sometimes they dig just at the roots of the grass pushing the grass up. That is what kills the grass.
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#11 Wizard777

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 06:32 PM

They hide it on their person and dump it in the yard when they go out for exercize. Oh wait a minute. You're talking about the animal. :o
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#12 Dee Lightner

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 07:35 PM

But they have got a lot worse since it has been raining so much

I just wondered at first if they were even moles, because there have been SEVERAL really large snakes found down here this summer (like anacondas and boas) and the entrances of the tunnels are perfectly round, I was afraid they might be some kind of burrow from a big snake. (apparently all those folks who bought exotic snakes years ago just let them loose when they got to large to handle. The other day they found a 8 foor reticulated python in some lady's washer! And a couple guys saw a snake that they said was HUGE in a tree!)

But my husband said the holes are from mole tunnels and that they tunnel closer to the surface when it is really wet.

And that got me thinking, what happens to the dirt. When I checked one site it said a mole can dig a really long tunnel in one night, and I could picture it scurrying out with a load of dirt and back in to do more digging!

Oh well, we are renting this house, so I need to tell the lawn guy when he comes to mow this week!
In Memory of my sister, Linda Wasserman.



Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the
morning, satan shudders & says..."Oh no....she's awake!!"




My Blog:

http://gruntonce.blogspot.com/

#13 WKDWZD

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 07:37 PM

Oh well, we are renting this house, so I need to tell the lawn guy when he comes to mow this week!


I think that he'll notice... ;)
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#14 dogfish

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 09:09 PM

You have never seen mole humps...where they push up the dirt?
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#15 zenwalk

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 11:34 PM

They hide it on their person and dump it in the yard when they go out for exercize. Oh wait a minute. You're talking about the animal. :o


Yeah like in The Great Escape. They wear moletrousers and hide the stuff in bags down their legs. It also has the advantage of attracting the female of the species.
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#16 zenwalk

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 11:37 PM

But they have got a lot worse since it has been raining so much

I just wondered at first if they were even moles, because there have been SEVERAL really large snakes found down here this summer (like anacondas and boas) and the entrances of the tunnels are perfectly round, I was afraid they might be some kind of burrow from a big snake. (apparently all those folks who bought exotic snakes years ago just let them loose when they got to large to handle. The other day they found a 8 foor reticulated python in some lady's washer! And a couple guys saw a snake that they said was HUGE in a tree!)

But my husband said the holes are from mole tunnels and that they tunnel closer to the surface when it is really wet.

And that got me thinking, what happens to the dirt. When I checked one site it said a mole can dig a really long tunnel in one night, and I could picture it scurrying out with a load of dirt and back in to do more digging!

Oh well, we are renting this house, so I need to tell the lawn guy when he comes to mow this week!

Are you certain you don't have ground hornets? They show up around this time of year and can leave tens of holes in your lawn almost overnight. You'd know if you had them. They're the big greenish hornets.
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#17 QT3.14

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 10:09 AM

They have great forelimbs like little shovels and once they have a quantity of loosened soil they simply turn around and push it out through already opened tunnels to the surface. They're like little excavating machines. :D

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#18 Dryfire

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 12:33 PM

All moles have a spade and a trowel. As they're digging they compact the dirt to the sides and top of the tunnel and trowel it tightly to sides. They also lightly push up directly below the surface of the ground to create the hole. HOLY MOLEY!!!!! :P Getting rid of them is another story, but I'll give you a hint. 2 metal rods and a heavy duty extension cord. :)
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