Q:

What is the difference between voles and moles?

A:

Quick Answer

Moles are insectivores, eating earthworms, grubs and other insects. Voles are herbivores, feeding on grass, flower roots, seeds, bulbs and bark. Though they eat different foods, the damage they cause to lawns is similar, with surface tunneling harming the landscape.

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Full Answer

Moles produce tunnels that run just beneath the surface. They use these tunnels for feeding, and they appear as raised ridges. A second type of runway runs deeper under the lawn. These connect the feeding passages in a network of tunnels. Soil from these deeper tunnels is usually found piled up in mounds.

Voles construct visible runways at or near the surface. These runways are about 2 inches wide. The runways result from voles constantly traveling the same path while eating the grass blades along the path. They do not leave behind any mounds from digging.

Moles are gray to dark brown and are about 7 inches long. Their most unique features are their long noses and paddled, webbed front feet used for tunnel excavation. These paddles allow the mole to dig at the rate of 1 foot per minute. They have no visible ears. Voles are rodents and look like mice with shorter tails. They are dark brown and about 5 inches long, with noticeable eyes and ears.

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