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Methods to Control Mole Numbers

You must use safe and humane methods to control or get rid of ground moles that are damaging a lawn. These practices offer the most effective ways for getting rid of mole numbers from your soil.

HOW TO CONTROL MOLES: The Animal Welfare Act 2006 protects some species of wildlife animals that you catch.

Illegal Control Methods for Ground Moles

You must not use any of these options to deter or to get rid of moles:

  • Bows and crossbows
  • Explosives (except legal ammunition for a licensed firearm)
  • Live birds or animals used as bait or live decoys
  • Self-locking snares

Failing to use the control methods set out in this guidance can result in a jail sentence up to 6 months and a fine up to £5,000 (per animal). There are other ways to control pests on your property (e.g. animals or insects that cause harm or create a nuisance).

Note: Causing unnecessary suffering to an animal can mean a jail term along with a fine up to £20,000.

Most Effective Time to Control Moles

Ground moles are most active digging new tunnels before the breeding season begins in the summer. So, the best time to set mole traps is during the UK winter months (October to April).

Catching Ground Moles with Cage Traps

Place the traps at least 15 centimetres below ground. The optimum location for a mole trap is in the main tunnel of a mole run.

Even though wildlife and biodiversity rules allow the use of spring traps:

You Must…
  • Only use a type of spring trap that is commonly used for catching moles.
  • Kill any moles that you catch as humanely as possible to reduce suffering.

Note: Check the traps at least once per day and remove any captured animals.

How to Get Rid of Ground Moles in the United Kingdom
Controlling Mole Numbers with Gas Products

Gassing is another method used as pest control for ground moles in the United Kingdom. But, it is best to have someone trained in the usage of gassing products to gas moles in underground tunnels.

Note: The HSE produces an information sheet titled ‘Gassing of rabbits and vertebrate pests’.

Using Repellents to Control Mole Numbers

Commercial deterrents and repellents are used to reduce the numbers of many pests and wild animals. Even so, at this time no one produces repellents approved for use in the fight against ground moles.


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How to Get Rid of Ground Moles in the United Kingdom