Most of us who own homes or buildings have had run-ins with lawn & garden rodents, gophers, squirrels, moles, voles, chipmunks, field mice – you name it – someone’s experienced them.
These pesky critters can ruin our gardens or manicured lawns in what seems like a heartbeat. Somehow they can even find their way under our foundation slabs.
Have you noticed how you almost never actually see the varmints when they’re committing their acts of destruction?
Is It Moles or Chipmunks?
Both the Eastern Chipmunk and the Star-nosed Mole have made themselves at home in our area, including Voorhees, Moorestown, Medford, Marlton and Cherry Hill — to name just a few.
While both species are burrowers, the holes they leave behind are distinctive and can help you identify which is inhabiting your lawn space.
When chipmunks burrow, they actually excavate the soil, which means they don’t leave much evidence (no ridges, mounds, or grassy dirt) around the holes.
On the other hand, moles burrow aggressively – pushing up piles of dirt as they burrow, leaving a volcano-like mound around their hole.
Where They Burrow
Where the moles or chipmunks burrow can tell us a lot about them.
If you pay attention and can tell us where they burrow, it’ll help us understand…
• What specific habitats they prefer in our lawns & gardens
• What they tend to eat.
Because they prefer moist and rich soil, we’ll typically find them in places like pastures, meadows, woodlands, and lawns. If you have a green thumb, you know just what I mean. Moles love these conditions because it makes burrowing easier and there’s an abundant food supply, too!
In the pest control business, we refer to moles as insectivores (or ‘insect-eaters’). And since they rarely consume any kind of plant material, moles prey mostly on other living ‘thingies’ that also love the moist soil – namely earthworms and white grubs.
Chipmunks prefer areas with old or rotted logs, stone walls, any kind of ground cover, or wooded areas. And even as small as they are, when they decide to burrow under your outdoor stairs, foundations, and retention walls, chipmunks can still cause significant structural damage.
Chipmunks love fruits, berries, flower bulbs, nuts, seeds or seedlings, and occasionally, smaller insects. You can see why they set up camp where they do, just by knowing what they like to eat.
Why It’s Important to Tell the Difference
Think of it like a doctor treating an illness, it would be important for the ‘doc’ to know what ‘bug’ they’re dealing with – so they can establish the best course of action to take with their patient, right?
Think of your local professional pest control service company (like TermiGuard Pest Control Services), as the ‘doctor’ and your yard or lawn as the ‘patient.’ When you can help us name the ‘illness,’ we can provide you with the best ‘prescription for the cure.’