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kdexpd
04-02-2010, 07:12 PM
So I'm at one of my customers, and I just finished setting the last of 5 mole traps in their back yard and I hear one of the others go off. I thought to myself it was just a misfire and I'll go reset it. I think I have broken a personal record for the quickest catch of a mole ever. Less than 5 minutes. So, I'm removing him from the trap and getting ready to reset it and the one not 25 feet from me goes off too. Before all is said and done I had 3 moles in the first 2 hours. Unfortunately, this is a 2 acre job and this is just the beginning, but if I can catch em' this fast, this job should be over pretty quickly. Unfortunately, it started raining before I caught anymore, so we'll have to wait until tomorrow before I can expect to get anymore. This is kind of a blessing and a curse because I have to reset them fairly quickly in order to catch the others that are using the run, and I also have yards to mow, so I may have to hire someone to just drive around all day checking and resetting my traps...the plus side is it's an extra $50 a week in my pocket. Woo-hoo!

Kendrick

CHEESE2009
04-02-2010, 07:20 PM
You should put the dead moles into a plastic bag with your business card stapled on, write,

"we offer to set traps to get rid of rodents!"

You could also glue some googly eyes on them just for fun!

(they do this in Mexico, I'm not kidding!)


That's pretty neat though, you'd think MINIMUM about week the trap would go off, that is pretty swift! Awesome!

kdexpd
04-02-2010, 07:26 PM
Breeze you may be on to something...I could set the googly eyed moles right next to the pile of money with the googly eyes and incorporate saving a bunch of money by switching to my company. HAHA! If I get rich, I'll split it with ya for the idea!

mzlawncare
04-02-2010, 08:34 PM
nice german sheperd kdexpd

picframer
04-02-2010, 08:45 PM
You need to cure what they are eating and almost always it's grubs, Nematodes will wipe grubs out in 48 hours and the moles will move on.

kdexpd
04-02-2010, 09:18 PM
Well Andy, grubs are only half of the moles main diet. Earthworms are the other. I have a customer who has hired me to do mole removal, but hired another lawn service to apply a poison, who told him he needed to kill all the grubs and earthworms. I had to laugh because without earthworms, your lawn would be pretty unhealthy due to the poor natural fertilizers earthworms produce, not to mention the soil compaction they help prevent. He is apparently going to have this "service" performed by the other guys, and I told him it was a scam, but he has bought into their BS. We'll see what happens. Moles are carnivorous and do not eat pellets or "peanuts", thus making them useless. I have had more customers swear by the "peanuts" and poison fake earthworms, however they have ended up calling me in to solve the problem in the end. I would rather pay someone to come in and trap the problem and know it's working because I can see the physical evidence, rather than paying double or triple to have a bunch of chemicals dumped on my lawn which is going to hurt more than help, and not provide any proof it ever worked. Poisons will deter a mole, however, it will only tunnel around where you applied it and keep damaging the turf. Scientific research has proven that trapping them is the only way to completely remedy the problem.

kdexpd
04-02-2010, 09:21 PM
Thanks mzlawncare. He's half German Shepherd and half Rotweiller. He used to be my K-9 unit back in the law enforcement days. Had to retire him because he got hit by a car and it broke his hips. Now he's been promoted from sniffing drugs to sniffing moles..haha!

Kendrick

CHEESE2009
04-02-2010, 09:36 PM
Thanks mzlawncare. He's half German Shepherd and half Rotweiller. He used to be my K-9 unit back in the law enforcement days. Had to retire him because he got hit by a car and it broke his hips. Now he's been promoted from sniffing drugs to sniffing moles..haha!

Kendrick



I wish my dog was useful... :(

All he does is bark bark bark...

All I do now is say, "GO LIE DOWN" I say that 1000 times a day.

It's now pronounced, "GRR-LUH-DUH!!!":p

kdexpd
04-02-2010, 11:14 PM
I hear ya Breeze. I had a Doberman for a control unit that when I was training him, I used a mild shock collar. It sounded kinda cruel to me when it was presented to me as an option, however it only took about a day and a half for him to turn out to be a very well trained dog. I would warn him by saying "no bark" and then just push the button. I'd say it again right after and he learned very, very quickly. After a few days, all I had to do was just put it on him and he knew...didn't even have to take the controller with me anymore.

Kendrick

Steve
04-03-2010, 04:45 AM
It sounds like you really had a successful day with that!

How should a lawn care business owner go about estimating such services?

If these traps are working so fast, how do you handle it? Do you just hand out there until things slow down a bit?

kdexpd
04-03-2010, 09:09 AM
How should a lawn care business owner go about estimating such services?

If these traps are working so fast, how do you handle it? Do you just hang out there until things slow down a bit?

Steve, what I do is I charge the customer $50 a week for up to 5 traps..there is a 5 trap minimum, whether I set them all or not, to get started with. Then there is a $10 set up fee when I set the first round. Some people charge a $25 set up fee and then charge like $5 per mole. This can work for you or against you in some cases, as you may not catch but 2 or 3 moles in the smaller lawns. However if you are catching 3-4 moles per day, you're making some good money. With my set up, I can at least guarantee myself $60 per week, as I have been signing my customers up for a week at a time. I am just starting out with this service and haven't quite got the charging thing down yet, but this seems to work for me for now.

These moles I caught yesterday were kind of a fluke, as you normally don't catch them that quickly. It's possible, just not normal. This gal has a huge lawn and it's just infested with moles...it's kinda like a horror movie really, so that is why I'm catching them so fast. Once I thin down the heard a little, things will slow down a bit. Now this week a lot of my mowing accounts will be starting up and I won't have the time to be checking mole traps all day. This is where my Dad will come in handy. He's retired and thinks this is kinda neat, so I'll have to take him with me for the next few days and teach him how to check and reset them. You need to check them at least twice a day...once in the morning and once before dark. I may have to hire someone if Dad doesn't work out, or doesn't want to do it, but I still have friends in town who would like to, and they're free labor. We'll just have to see.

Steve
04-04-2010, 02:52 AM
As far as checking the traps, is this something that is easily visible from the ground? Could the homeowner check them and advise you if there seems to be a mole in them?

If you have to check them twice a day for a period of time, that could really eat into the profit.

What's the best way to handle that?

kdexpd
04-04-2010, 10:53 AM
As far as checking the traps, is this something that is easily visible from the ground?

Yes. The top of the traps are above ground so you can easily see them and tell if one has activated. I always put an orange surveyor's flag beside each trap to help me locate them and also keep the customer from running over them with their mower. I will post a pic today after I have gone and checked them.

Could the homeowner check them and advise you if there seems to be a mole in them?

Yes, however I discourage that. In my service contract that each customer signs, it states that the customer is not allowed any physical contact with any device I utilize in their yard. I have had instances where people have gone out and either pulled them out to check them, or have pulled them out and removed the mole so they don't get charged. If I find out someone has done that, in the contract it states they understand I will charge them a $50 fine and my services will end immediately. They are also required to pay me immediately for the services up to that point. I do this because the traps I use for moles are dangerous when out of the ground and I don't need a customer losing a finger.

If you have to check them twice a day for a period of time, that could really eat into the profit. What's the best way to handle that?

Once the amount I'm catching gets back to normal, I will only check the traps once per day. For now, since I'm catching so many in this gal's yard, I need to keep resetting the ones that are catching the moles in order to keep getting more.

Little's
04-04-2010, 01:08 PM
Out here we charge $250 minimum to trap at someones house. Its usually a 3 trip process (or so). 1st trip we set all necessary traps, 2nd trip check all traps, reset them, 3rd trip we collect all traps and go.

Also, any gopher or mole we catch gets stuffed right back into the ground. The smell will keep anything out of the existing tunnel system for at least 3 weeks. That way another cant move in. When this happens, the customer will call you and say you didnt get them all.

When we do vineyards, we charge $250 for the day, plus $5 per gopher. We can easily trap 50-100 gophers in a day. Gophers are much easier to trap than moles.

Also, moles will eat 75% of their body weight everyday in insect, grubs, worms, etc.

kdexpd
04-04-2010, 01:29 PM
Here's the pics of the traps.

Steve
04-05-2010, 06:10 AM
Do you feel this service could be offered across the country or is this something that is more tailored to certain temperature and climate zones?

kdexpd
04-05-2010, 09:28 AM
Yes. I'm also a member of a trapper's forum and there are a lot of people all over the US who are trapping moles. I've been told you can trap them all year long, and some people have pics of trapping them with snow on the ground.

Steve
04-06-2010, 05:05 AM
Out of all the animal trapping services that exist, does it appear the mole trapping is one of the most popular? Especially when mixed with lawn care?

kdexpd
04-07-2010, 10:18 PM
When mixed with lawn care, yes I would say it's the most popular. I started the nuisance wildlife business because I'm always looking for new ideas and new avenues for more income. And I love a good challenge. Considering the low investment in mole traps, and the possibility of high income potential, I would say it's something worth looking into as another service for our members. You set em' and leave em'. Check them once a day and charge by the week. If you already have a roller, there's an extra charge too. Trap them and then add a rolling service after words. You made some extra dough and the customer's lawn is back to normal. There's no special tricks and you don't have to be an "expert". I mean really, who couldn't use an extra $100-$200 a week?

Traps: $10/trap
Marker Flags: $7/100
Latex Gloves: $10/box
Flower Spade: $3

Steve
04-08-2010, 04:54 AM
I think this is brilliant! Please keep us posted on how all this goes!