Moles, gophers, what’s the difference?
There appears to be a sudden influx of holes and mounds of dirt tearing apart your beloved lawn, and with the assistance of LandCare’s helpful guide, you have been able to identify what vermin is digging holes in your yard. However, you’re still left wondering what is so different about moles and gophers, aside from the way they dig up dirt? Well, like always, LandCare is here to help with all your mole and gopher questions. Find out what makes mole and gophers different
While gophers are frequently mistaken for moles, they are definitely their own type of trouble.
Gopher’s eyes and ears are barely visible, but their extremely sensitive, long whiskers and tail male up for their weak hearing and sight. These rodents are larger than moles, and grow up to 7 to 12 inches long. Gophers have a set of teeth that grow outside of their lips. Gophers also have fur-lined pouches on either side of their mouths. These pouches open on each side and reach all the way back to their shoulder, and when filled with food, these pouches make a gophers head look double its normal size.
Gophers are strict herbivores, and they will eat nearly any type of plant. Their diet shifts seasonally according to the availability of food and their need for nutrition and water. Gophers eat above ground parts of vegetation mainly during the growing season, when the vegetation is green and luscious. However, year-round, roots make up the majority of a gopher’s diet.
Gophers are very territorial animals and seek exclusive control of large territories that can exceed 2,000 square feet!
Moles are actually very different from gophers, except from also being a nuisance to your yard.
While moles may look like a rodent, they are not; moles are actually an insectivore related to the bat and shrew. They are typically gray, black and deep brown in color with smooth coats. Moles generally grow to lengths of 6 to 8 inches, and have very wide front feet and angular snouts. Unlike gophers, moles have a highly developed sense of smell and touch and are extremely sensitive to anything unnatural in their environment.
Moles mainly survive off of earthworms, snails, slugs, millipedes, and centipedes, but they rarely eat vegetation. Moles eat live prey and cause little or no damage to landscape plants. But, even though they don’t eat your plants, moles still cause extensive cosmetic damage to lawns and other garden areas.
Moles can dig a foot of surface tunnel per minute and eat over 50 percent of their body weight in insects daily!
Gophers and moles make look and eat differently, but these pesky creatures definitely do their fair share of damage to your lawn. Call in the experts at LandCare to remove these vermin from your precious yard.