What’s the Difference Between a Gopher and a Mole?

Although different creatures can destroy your lawn, none is as frustrating as the gopher and mole. These animals can mess your garden, leaving you with tunnels and mounds. That’s something that can cause stress for any homeowner.

It’s easy to assume that some pest could be the reason behind the damage to your lawn. Sometimes it’s difficult to tell whether you have a gopher or a mole in your garden. You need to know what you’re dealing with as this will guide you on what method to use for eradication.

Below is a detailed look at the differences between a gopher and a mole. We also list some signs of infestation to watch out for when dealing with these pests.

What is a Mole?

Moles are deep brown, black, or gray. Their average length is about six to eight inches. You’ll notice that they have small eyes and ears, and they have angular snouts and wide front feet.

The underground mammal spends most of its existence underneath, and they feed on insects. Moles won’t damage your plants, but you may notice some burrowing.

Signs of Mole Infestation

Moles dig deep tunnel systems underground to feed and live inside. You can notice these tunnel systems from the surfaces as they appear like raised ridges. Molehills can also be on side tunnels. The hills look like big dirt mounds that form when the mole pushes the dirt it’s digging out of the burrow to the surface.

Some people may confuse a molehill with gopher mounds, as they look similar. However, they are different. Molehills have a cone shape, while a gopher mound has a horseshoe pattern.

Moles may also dig tunnels along the edges of the fence and walls. Also, moles eat worms and insects, their favorite being ants, snails, beetles, and subsurface insects. Moles live alone, and you won’t find them living in groups apart from the mating season that happens during the spring.

What is a Gopher?

Pocket gophers come from the same family as kangaroo rats. They have large tunnel networks that they use as a safe space from predators. They also store the collected food in these networks.

Signs of Gopher Infestation

Gophers have chisel teeth, round ears, beady eyes, clawed feet, and a skinny tail. You may mistake a gopher for a big rat, as it resembles a rodent.

Gophers are herbivorous, which means they eat many plants. They consume the root system, something that weakens the whole plant. You may notice that gophers dig the small plants down to their den.

Also, gophers dig tiny holes, which they use to hide and feed on plants. You’ll spot these holes if you have plants in your garden.

Differences Between Gophers and Moles

Moles and gophers may resemble each other but are different. The main areas they differ in include:

Their Appearance

Although gophers and models are both rodents, they have some distinct features that tell them apart. Gophers have a rat type of look, while moles have a snout and swollen feet. Moreover. Moles have short body hair on their belly, unlike gophers.

Their Behavior

While gophers live alone, their burrows can interconnect, which can lead to a high population. Moles also live alone, but their population is lower than that for gophers.

Their Diet

Gophers are vegetarians; you’ll find them eating tubers and roots. Their favorites are leaves, roots, bulbs, and tree roots. Moles are carnivores and feed mostly on insects, earthworms, snail larvae, and small vertebrates.

Why It’s Important to Have Pest Control for Moles and Gophers

Once you’ve determined the type of pest you’re dealing with, you need to contact pest control professionals. Both moles and gophers can create mounds and destroy your piping or cables. The team at AAI Pest have the skills and the tools to keep moles and gophers from ruining your lawn and garden.

We’ll send an expert to inspect your property to determine the severity of the problem. That will help us decide on the best treatment method. Contact us today to learn about the different mole and gopher control services that we offer at AAI Pest.

What’s the Difference Between a Gopher and a Mole? Professional Pest Control Services in Tracy CA


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