Tony Koski, Extension Turf Specialist
|Vole trails in Macy's lawn - originating in the junipers|
|Cute, yes - but destructive in the landscape|
|Voles can totally girdle trees and shrubs|
|Even mature trees aren't safe from vole feeding|
|Hosta root system destroyed by feeding voles|
Voles are more common in landscapes that border natural areas or greenbelts where grass is tall and infrequently mowed. Especially attractive are shrub and flower beds which are covered with landscape fabric (another reason NOT to use landscape fabric in your landscape!). Discourage voles by eliminating places for them to hide and reproduce (they breed throughout the year, having as many as 5 litters of 3-5 young each time!). Avoid the use of landscape fabric and pull mulch away from the bases of trees and shrubs. Mow tall grass in “native” or natural areas adjacent to lawn areas in the fall after the grass has stopped growing. Woody plants and treasured perennials can be protected by the use of wire mesh screening to prevent feeding.
|Vole damage on carrots|
|Set traps in the runways: end-to-end,|
with triggers on opposite ends - or so
the trigger is directly on the runway.
Baiting appears unnecessary.
|Cover mouse traps with pieces of gutter|
to keep pets and children from disturbing the
traps, and to guide the voles to the traps
A good source of more detailed information on voles can be found in this CSU fact sheet: Managing Voles in Colorado