Voles drive homeowners crazy! You can almost be certain you have voles among you if your yard suddenly has dead grass, plants and snake like tunnels with no dirt mounds around your yard. These holes are about two inches wide. Voles are small, brown or grayish rodents, adults measure about 3-9 inches in length depending on the species. They have short, stout bodies and short hairy tails. At first glance you may even mistake it for a mouse! They are relatives of mice and are commonly called field mice. They have cute little round ears that get lost in their fluffy fur and they have small beady eyes. The two most commonly found species of vole here in the U.S. are prairie voles and meadow voles. The meadow vole is seen the most in urban areas, whereas meadow voles are found in more rural settings.
What Do Voles Eat & Drink? Bugs
Voles are mostly vegetarians. They love to eat small plants and will most definitely wreak havoc on your lawn and garden if given the opportunity to do so. Their choice meals though, are stems and blades of grass, making your lawn a free buffet for them. They burrow underground and eat succulent root systems in the privacy of their tunnels until your plants die off. These rodents build intricate tunnel systems under ground which can leave them almost undetected for periods of time.
What is Eating My Plants Leaves & Roots?
Since voles are strictly plant eaters, here are some identifying factors to determine what type of rodent you have on your hands.
-If you have partially eaten vegetables, or potatoes around your garden, or holes where they used to be, you probably have a vole on your hands.
-Take a close look at the bottom of your trees and shrubs, if you notice little side by side chew marks, about ¼ inch long along the bases, this is another indication that voles are present.
-Flower bulbs are not safe when voles are near, check your flowers when you’re outside watering to look for signs of damage.
-Young trees and shrubs are especially susceptible to vole damage, voles tunnel through root systems and damage, or even kill immature trees. If one of your trees appears to show signs of distress or is leaning at an angle. Call Animal Pest Management to come preform an inspection before they kill the tree.
How to Keep Voles Out of Your Yard
-Keep your yard mowed, shrubs and plants trimmed, and weeds cut back. Voles look for areas that are densely covered in vegetation, weeds, or grass. They look for areas like this to provide protection from predators and gives them ample nesting material.
-Do not store wood near your gardens, trees or lawns. These are perfect hiding places for voles to reside.
-Bird feeders are just free food for voles, try to keep the ground around them as clean as possible to avoid attracting voles.
-Avoid placing dense mulch piles directly at the base of your trees.
Vole Inspections, Control, Trapping, Removal & More in San Bernardino, Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside & San Diego Counties, California
There is more than one way to control voles. Animal Pest Management understands that each situation is going to be unique. That is why we use custom vole control techniques with each home we visit. Depending on how far the voles have reached, and just how many voles you are battling with. If you are unsure of how to deal with the vole population in your yard, call Animal Pest Management to come to your home and preform an in-depth inspection today!