zero for two on vole eradication

cincyhostaguyAugust 6, 2008

OK, I tried the wine bottle laying on its side facing east with d-con, and I tried the jar with a hole drilled in the lid laying on its side facing east with d-con. I put them both in the area where the critters had recently wiped out a couple of hostas. No luck. Is there anything more I need to know? Should the bottle/jar be sitting on the ground or partially submerged? Should they be covered with something? Do the voles eat the poison and die in the bottle/jar? How much poison should I put in? I bought the little pyramid-shaped package and sprinkled about half of one in each.

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critter-ridder(5b)

I just pour the d-con down the little critter's hole. What happens after that I do not know, but I have not lost a hosta to those monsters this year. I should buy stock in the d-con company because I have used LOTS of it.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 9:53AM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

Voles eat the stuff and die a few days later...are you sure a vole didn't go in and eat a little?
The decon I use comes in a paper packet and you just put that out and when the package has been chewed open, you know that a vole is not long for the world.
I would just put that in a jar on it's side....maybe facing tot he North??
However, If I were a vole and given the choice between decon and hosta roots, I would take the hosta roots.
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 9:57AM
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evermore_gw z 4/5 NB

I lost two newly planted beauties this summer (Love Pat and Orange Marmalade) and voles were the likely culprits. Rather than use poison, I have liberally spread used kitty litter around the new beds, and so far it seems to be working.

By the by, I stuffed the completely topless roots of Love Pat back in the dirt and now, about one month later, I have nice green leaves developing quite rapidly. My fingers are crossed.

Good luck in whatever you do.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 10:18AM
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cincyhostaguy

I never see a hole until after the hosta roots have been eaten. What about doing this out in the sunlight? Should the bottle or jar be covered up?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 1:46PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

cincyhostaguy, I doubt it if the voles die in the jar after eating it. I believe dcon is Coumadin, which is a blood thinner. I was once told by a vet that an animal eating it just gets weak from hemmoraging (sp?) and dies.

After my cat brought home a vole a couple of days ago I decided I better go vole hunting. I found those raised tunnels everywhere! None near my hosta beds though.
I put out a half doz bottles with dcon inside and 4 mouse traps with peanut butter. Something was messing with 2 of the traps but nothing was caught. I'm hoping that they're at least eating the poison.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2008 at 2:10AM
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regattagirl(4a Minneapolis)

Hmmmm...the point isn't to catch the vole, now dead, in the bottle but rather to keep other animals from getting to it. Janice, am I right?

    Bookmark   August 7, 2008 at 2:38PM
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i_dig_it(z5a - Illinois)

But if the poisoned vole is eaten by another animal, like a hawk, owl or a cat, it too gets poisoned.

Janet

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 12:36AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Janet, I thought about that too....

I don't know if voles taste good to my cats or not.
The vole that the male cat brought home I think must of
died of a heart attack, there wasn't a bite or claw mark on it, just cat spit.

I think I'll call my vet tomorrow and ask if my cats can get poisoned if they eat a poisoned vole. I hope not.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 2:15AM
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nchostaqueen(z5 OH)

Forget the poison...get and keep a cat!

Deb

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 6:51AM
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woodthrush(z4PA)

I think the voles multiply faster than cats. You'd need a lot of them.
Pam

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 7:30AM
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regattagirl(4a Minneapolis)

Maybe get a hawk too...

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 7:48AM
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cincyhostaguy

No, not trying to catch dead voles, just wondering if and how I might see evidence of failure or success in getting some kills. I've got a cat but she's too old to be interested anymore and spends all her time sleeping indoors now. Anyway, still looking for foolproof ideas if anyone has any. As it is I'm scared to buy any new hostas because I know eventually they'll be killed by the voles.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 5:11PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

The cat brought home another dead vole. That's two now that
I've seen.

If I had to do over again I would of counted out just 10 of those D-Con pellets before putting them into bottles... that way I'd know if I had gotten any "customers" When the pellets are gone I'll do it that way.

BTW, I didn't have any jars or glass bottles to use. Instead I used a bunch of plastic 16 & 20 oz. water and pepsi bottles. I just cut the openings wider.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2008 at 7:10PM
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cincyhostaguy

OK maybe I'll try counting pellets. In the meantime I tried a mousetrap with a piece of apple under a flower pot, and again nothing happened. It's frustrating because I know they're out there.

Why cut the opening bigger on a water or pepsi bottle? Wouldn't the size be the same as a wine bottle opening? Do you just lay the bottle on the ground, or cover it or submerge it in some way?

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 11:29AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

cincyhostaguy, I cut the opening bigger cause it just looked too small....I don't know, maybe they can crawl into something that small.

I set the mouse traps with peanut butter but something licks the peanut butter off and leaves the traps sprung. Maybe it's the cheap traps that I bought from the dollar store ?

Yesterday, I found vole holes right next to where I planted
new hostas this year. They (the voles) gotta go!

As soon as the weatherman says that we have 0 chance of rain, I'm going to put down one of those sticky traps.
If I'm successful I'll be posting pics of stuck voles!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 11:45AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

FYI....I called my vet today and asked if it would be harmful if my cats catch and eat voles that had been poisoned by D-Con. The vet said that he didn't think that there would be a problem.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 12:19PM
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i_dig_it(z5a - Illinois)

I do know that birds of prey will die if they eat a poisoned rodent. But they key here is they "eat" the whole rodent, sometimes in one swallow, leaving it to digest in their stomach. Thus the poison in the rodent is absorbed into the bird.

It scares me when a vet says "I don't think so".

Cats usually won't eat a rodent after they catch it. They like the chase and playing with it, and then bringing it home as a token of their loyalty to us. But if they were to eat it, or some part of it, there is a very good chance
they too could be poisoned.

It didn't take much searching on the web to find info and cases of this happening and warnings about it.

Now I'm not telling anyone to not use poisons, but only to use them as a last resort and be aware of what else you might be poisoning.

Janet

Here is a link that might be useful: Secondary Poisoning

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 4:36PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Janet, I believe my vet was thinking my cats are well fed and therefore would not kill a vole to eat, or they don't eat voles, but would kill for sport.
I've never known any of my cats eating anything that they bring home.
So far this week they've brought home 2 voles and 1 shrew.
Not a mark on any of them, just cat spit.
I have no idea if the critters were sick before the cats got them.
I sure hope that they'd never eat one that had gotten poisoned.
That would be awful!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 1:15AM
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billykathy

Hi sassy7142. First, let me emphatically state that I am no lover of rodents or any other small, hosta-molesting animals in my yard. I have absolutely no problems with "eliminating" them in any number of ways. But let me caution you about the sticky traps. A few weeks ago, being sick and tired of opening up my propane grill to find 2-3 mice every time I wanted to cook, I got the red-hot idea of nabbing them with sticky traps. The traps were buried deep inside the grill, but obviously, there are many entryways into grills. A day later, to my horror, I found one of my favorite birds, a Carolina Wren, in a horrible state, stuck to the trap on my patio, trying desperately to get free. I can't express the guilt I felt and still feel. I'll spare you the gory details, but unless you're using them in a place you KNOW cannot be accessed by desirable visitors, think twice before using sticky traps. Having said that, happy hunting, and I hope you get your prey!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 9:11AM
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just1morehosta(5)

Well, i have thought about this question for a couple of days now,my first thought was, yes, if your cat finds a poisoned rodent and eats it, it two will be poisoned.My resoning on this is,
Right now the world over, we are having a seroius problem with bats dying,we need bats to keep the planet in balance.They reason that we are using to much spray to kill the mosquitoes,bats eat the poisoned mosquito,and the bats are dying.We eat to much beef with to many chemicals in them and we are affected,may not be over night,but we are.Tomatoes,peppers,what is on or in,our food is what we will reap.
Same with our beloved pets.
Just my 2cents worth.

Carol

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 10:34AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

billykathy, I am a huge bird lover.
I have 4 feeders right outside my dining room window to watch.
I would be VERY upset if I found what you did.
I will take your advice and put the sticky traps inside a cage. Thanks for the warning.

Carol, I'm far from a cat lover, but I certainly don't want to hurt my cats. (I have 5 toy breed dogs & 2 cats)
The cats were born 3 yrs ago because I wasn't a responsible pet owner, so they'll have a good life here till they die of old age.
Your reasoning makes sense and I also think we will be paying the price for all the chemicals we use.
I live in a rural area and see a lot of No Til farming around here.
It's scarey.
Thanks for your input.
SASSY

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 11:14AM
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just1morehosta(5)

Your welcome sassy,i enjoy your postes very much,always something interesting going on over here isn't there.I have an inside cat,she is a tiny little thing,pretty quiet.I am thinkning of getting a kitten to see if she would like that.
I am not a dog person my self,but i think they are nice enough. :0)
I worry about the bees also,and butterflies,I read some where one time that all the G.M. soy beans and corn are having an impact on the bees and butterflies.I started a butterfly garden this year just to try to help in some small way.I think next year will be a better year,some of my plants will not bloom this year.Heres hoping any way.:0)

Carol

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 1:19PM
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cincyhostaguy

After all this talk which I've enjoyed reading, I still haven't learned a foolproof method to kill all these voles that are feasting on my hostas. I apologize in advance for my persistence but if anyone has any ideas, I'd love to keep reading!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 4:44PM
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yardmom

Cincyhostaguy,
I don't have voles (knock on wood) so I have no direct advice. Did you read the link below? Maybe there is something in it that would help.
My impression from people who have voles is that most of them give up trying to rid themselves of the voles and just start planting in wire baskets or planting hostas in pots in the ground. Some people put shell, small pebbles or chicken grit around the bottom of the holes before planting so the voles are less apt to dig there. The people who seem to fight it are ones that get voles when they have never had them before. Maybe there is more hope to control them before they get started.
Best of luck with it, whatever you do. Let us know what you try and how it is working!

Here is a link that might be useful: voles

    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 8:18PM
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gavinb08

"A day later, to my horror, I found one of my favorite birds, a Carolina Wren, in a horrible state, stuck to the trap on my patio, trying desperately to get free. I can't express the guilt I felt and still feel. I'll spare you the gory details, but unless you're using them in a place you KNOW cannot be accessed by desirable visitors, think twice before using sticky traps. Having said that, happy hunting, and I hope you get your prey!"

Yet you feel it is OK to inflict the same kind of agony on mice, that also feel pain? You feel the guilt of seeing what happens when an animal gets stuck on these things, yet you recommend them anyway?

Glue traps sicken me. The injures animals get on these things and the agony they have to endure is reflective of sadistic behaviour. If you need to remove them, do it humanely, don't torture them to death. Glue traps should be illegal... and the people who use them... well... I hope one day they're in a helpless position given no remorse.

Perhaps you should have thought about the consequences of your actions first before you used these barbaric things.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 1:57AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

gavinb08, You said, "Glue traps should be illegal... and the people who use them... well... I hope one day they're in a helpless position given no remorse."

YOU'RE KIDDING, RIGHT?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 2:26AM
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sue36(Z5 Maine)

This muat be the year for voles. We've never had them before, but we had a lot more snow cover last winter (that's supposed to be good for them). Our neighbors have 2 outdoor cats that prefer our yard, and we do see them catch things, but they clearly aren't making a dent.

They totally decimated the hosta in one garden, on the edge of the woods. They left the tree peonies, astilbe and other things along, for now. I pulled the rest of the hosta out of that garden because they were killing the plants faster than I could come up with a solution.

Yesterday at HD I bought hardware cloth, snap traps, decon and a spray with castor oil. A four-pronged attack.

All new hosta with have the hardware cloth around them. Does anyone know how big to make the circle, and how tall? Does it need a bottom? I read online it only needs to be 3", but that doesn't seem like much.

Where exactly do you place the traps and decon? The only holes I see are where the hostas are now gone. If there wasn't a big gaping hole where the roots used to be I wouldn't see any holes at all. They might be under the hemlocks or pines, but I'm not going into the woods searching for vole holes.

Any recommendations are appreciated.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 3:01PM
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billykathy

Thanks, Sassy7142, for your response to gavinb08 (who interestingly only just registered in this forum today). I'm debating as to whether such comments are more appropriately filed under "Whatever" or "Some things (and people) simply don't dignify a response". :-) Have a good one!

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 3:13PM
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gavinb08

"gavinb08, You said, "Glue traps should be illegal... and the people who use them... well... I hope one day they're in a helpless position given no remorse."

YOU'RE KIDDING, RIGHT?"

Of course I'm not kidding. Glue traps are unnecessarily drawn out and painful deaths for any animal caught... they are akin to torture. They are traps that cause severe injuries, force the animal to chew its limbs off and starve it to death without killing it. It is horrible.

And considering many countries have already banned them, and with many hardware chains and supermarkets taken them off shelves, it is obvious. Considering the alternatives of controlling rodents, there is no excuse to use glue traps.

People use them and have no idea what that animal goes through on these things. While pest animals need to be controlled or killed if need be, they should not be tortured to death. And I am sure the latter breaks quite a few animal cruelty laws, hence why I think glue traps should be illegal.

You have so many more humane alternatives, why not use them instead?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 10:49PM
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gavinb08

"Some things (and people) simply don't dignify a response"

Why?

Because I think glue traps are wrong and should be illegal?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 10:52PM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

I also think glue traps are beyond cruel and should be outlawed.
If you want to get rid of your voles, make your yard attratcive to vole predators...hawks and mainly owls....and regretably cats.
I too love my hosta but would never EVER think of using a glue trap. a nice clean snap is the best kill.
And, praytell, why do you disparage someone who disagrees with you?
Linda C....who has been posting on these forums since 1997. There was no Hosta forum then.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 12:57AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

I can't understand why I find every one of the mouse traps that I set out sprung and all of the peanut butter gone.
What could be doing that?

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 1:16AM
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paul_in_mn(4b)

Don't know - could be Speedy Gonzalez "the fastest mouse in all Mexico" - arriba

Look for a critter with peanut butter stuck to the roof of its mouth.

Paul

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 1:31AM
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Babka NorCal 9b

Sticky traps WORK. Rats spread the plague. WHATEVER it takes to eliminate them, DO IT. That is why we pay in our county taxes for vector control. They are VERMIN. Not our friends...
Well, pooh, I just stuck a live dungeness crab in boiling water tonight to eat,(it is a fast death) YUMMY, so I won't be on your favorites list.

Yes, we all have our opinions. Lindac, I so enjoy and respect all your other additions to this website, and I was here "way back when" too. We happen to disagree on this one.

-Babka

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 2:14AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Babka, Have you used sticky traps for voles?

Paul, LOL. Or look for a critter with peanut butter breath. LOL

Are voles considered a rodent like mice? I've only read that apples, nuts or peanut butter should be used as bait for voles. I've never known anyone to use anything but cheese to trap mice. Just curious.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 2:31AM
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regattagirl(4a Minneapolis)

Peanut butter works for mice too.

Go to www.wikipedia.com and search for voles and interestingly if you also read about moles, they are different characters.

To each his own regarding the demise of pests and critters, because I'm not about to say I have a right to an opinion on the subject and someone else doesn't. Everyone has got a different perspective.

I grew up on a farm and at 4 years old, I had responsibilities to help "clean chickens" for freezing starting with holding the newly headless ones upside down and "don't you dare let go!" It seemed perfectly normal to me then and now.

Best chicken ever.

I also get a kick out of city folk who live trap animals or pests so as not to harm them, and then "take them out to the country" where apparently it's okay to infest farms where no pests were before and now the farmers and farm families have to deal with them.

And in particular, I have noticed someone I know to fight for abortion rights, but then also demonstrates on the courthouse because someone threw a bag of puppies in a river. Now I'm NOT remotely saying I am okay with tossing a bag of puppies nor abortion either. I just noticed, that's all.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 9:17AM
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just1morehosta(5)

This is interesting.

My first thought on the sticky trapes was NOT A GOOD IDEA!
I still feel that way,last year on Tv, there was a lady that used one of those trapes in her home,her sons pet snake got loose and got cought in the trap,they were told to use olive oil on the snake and try to UNSTICK it,it was awful to watch.,they never said if it was ok, i am assuming it was not, or they would have said so.I feel bad we are all having the same problem this year with these critters,but i too, believe a clean snap is the way to go.Just my 2 cents on this subject---2-3 months posting--so not an oldtimer--is that ok?

Carol

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 9:18AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

I've never been PC and hope that I never will be.

I'm also known as an ULTRA-ULTRA right winger.

PROBABLY, again I say PROBABLY most people that are against sticky traps are liberals and therefore PROBABLY believe in the "right to choose"
If the D-Con and snap traps don't work, I "MAY" choose to use sticky traps.
Thank God (with a capital G) that we still have freedom to voice our opinions in this country, even on a hosta forum.

Question: Are you against fly traps too? I got one hanging in my garage. Very effective thing, catches everything that comes near it.

Is there are difference between a fly or a vole caught on sticky traps?

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 12:53PM
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gavinb08

"Sticky traps WORK. Rats spread the plague. WHATEVER it takes to eliminate them, DO IT. That is why we pay in our county taxes for vector control. They are VERMIN. Not our friends..."

It doesn't matter if they are vermin.

That is NO excuse to torture ANYTHING to death, especially when there are far more humane alternatives available to use.

"Question: Are you against fly traps too? I got one hanging in my garage. Very effective thing, catches everything that comes near it.

Is there are difference between a fly or a vole caught on sticky traps? "

No.

Comparing insects to voles is ridiculous. Voles are mammals with fully developed nervous systems, capable of feeling pain and experiencing terror. Insects don't even have any pain receptors. THAT alone makes it not worth using. Sticky traps are for lazy, sadistic people who would rather torture these animals to death rather than kill them quickly. Because that's exactly what sticky traps do.

Have you ANY idea what physically happens to these animals when they get stuck? I'm gobsmacked people condone barbaric methods when there are better alternatives. Needless cruelty is never justifiable.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 2:05PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Comparing insects to voles is ridiculous.

I don't know about that....I've watched a fly caught on fly paper..it was hanging by one wing...its' body was spinning around & around until it broke free from its trapped wing. Was that torture? Yeah, I think so. You say that insects don't have pain receptors? I don't know about that, but I do think that the flies that are caught on my fly paper are "tortured" so to speak. Do I care? NO, absolutely not!

How'd we get on this subject?

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 2:52PM
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gavinb08

"I don't know about that....I've watched a fly caught on fly paper..it was hanging by one wing...its' body was spinning around & around until it broke free from its trapped wing. Was that torture? Yeah, I think so. You say that insects don't have pain receptors? I don't know about that, but I do think that the flies that are caught on my fly paper are "tortured" so to speak. Do I care? NO, absolutely not!"

Do you know what nocioceptors are? Look them up. Insects do not have these. One can only be tortured if they can feel pain.

Subjecting an animal... human, dog, rat, vole, whatever, to torture is wrong. Your attitude would certainly change if you were the one subjected to it, and your torturer wouldn't care to reduce it or stop it altogether.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 3:34PM
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sue36(Z5 Maine)

Could we get back to how to get rid of voles?

Any recommendations on how to use the hardware cloth and how to place the snap traps and decon?

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 6:29PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

sue36, There was someone on this forum that had posted some pictures of the cages that he made for his hosta.
Who was that?
I'd also like to know how to place the snap traps, I'm obviously doing something wrong.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 7:19PM
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bunkers(z5 CO)

Folks, I know this is an old thread, but I think most people trying errdicate the voles using traps (sticky or not) will not be successful against the voles and their amazing reproduction rates. Were talking about 2-3 litters per year and maybe 15-20 per littler per vole ... you can't trap em fast enough in most cases.

What I have read is that even DCON usually takes 2 doses to kill them. But there is another type of pellet that works in only one dose and it causes heart failure in the voles. Thats the good stuff and its hard to find, but its what I've heard works.

I recently learned I have voles again ... so I will use the stuff I have to erradicate them. I am more willing to use it now, then in the spring when I have lots of birds around.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 1:15PM
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aahostas(z5 central Il.)

I have tried every one of these methods. Sticky traps are too cruel and can catch shrews, birds and other beneficial creatures. Cats are too lazy if well fed..I have a dozen of them and only find a vole carcass on occasion and talk about torture! The cats torture their victim for hours before killing them! Of all of the methods that I have used I think that planting in pots is the best. Second is poisoning.I use Tomcat bait because it is larger and it is blue(said to be invisible to birds).I take three bricks and make a pyramid over the vole hole.This keeps the dogs ,cats and birds out and the bait in. I check it every morning to see if the bait is taken.If it isn't taken within a few days I look for another hole and try again.It is important to locate an active entrance so the voles will take the bait to a central location and share it with the entire colony.This is the key to eradication. Prevention is also important.Try to keep surrounding areas of your hosta bed clean with nothing for the voles to hide under.I have been clearing a ten foot area between the woods and the Hosta and have seen great results. The voles don't like crossing an open area because it makes them vulnerable to predators. The same goes with mulch. If it is too deep the voles will move in. BE THe Vole Be the Vole!!!

Denny aka "The Volester"

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 11:30AM
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murkey(6)

After losing my entire hosta collection and watching my rosebushes blow across the yard because their roots were gone,I spent the last two summers on a mission to get rid of the voles. I tried everything I heard and read about, from those battery operated thingies you stick in the ground ( save your money, they don't work) to juicy fruit chewing gum ( they actually pushed this back out of the hole) to mothballs, garlic, the stuff you sprinkle on the ground ( smelly and pricey, and it only protects a small area), to a trap (we caught a robin in it),to applying a mixture of castor oil and dishsoap with a sprayer. I finally hit on something that seems to work.
When I see a hole, I cover it up, then check back to see if any new holes appear, to make sure it is an active run.
Then I use that poison peanut mole bait. They won't eat it by itself , but if I mix it with a good quality birdseed that has sunflower seeds in it, they gobble it up. I put this in a plastic bowl, like a margarine dish, lay the bowl on it's side next to the hole, and cover it with a bucket or box. A couple of days later the bowl will be empty. I had a huge infestation, so I pretty much kept this up most of last summer,moving the bait to areas where new holes appeared.I haven't seen any this year, and even my neighbor has had fewer problems,so hopefully, I got them all.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 3:35PM
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woodthrush(z4PA)

Thanks, I'll definitely try it. We had absolutely no acorns last fall, so I'm hoping a lot of them starved over the winter.
Pam

    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 5:50PM
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murkey(6)

This also seems to work on chipmunks and gophers

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 10:28AM
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kendra5

will stay out of trap/poison controversy. always thought my major prob w hosta wold be deer....not.....voles have arrived....read of potato farmer who surrounded field with aluminum flashing and it saved his crop......just tried inserting some in trench in my rocky n.e. soil....too labor intensive for large garden and no helper....hardware cloth the same....will go to pots in the ground next....what has been successful, clay pots? i know the critters can bite through plastic....wouldn't you know they got my un-identified favorites! i am ancient but will not give up!! has anyone tried planting in buried cinder blocks?

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 2:03PM
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woodthrush(z4PA)

Burying the pots or planting in cinder blocks really won't do much good. A vole only needs about an inch of soil to burro
into the ground and reach the roots of the plants. So if the soil around the crown has any exposure, a vole can dig down to the roots. And if they are hungry, they will even start at ground level. Poison is really the only control. They are
rodents, carry disease, destroy crops and plants. I can see some people might think the sticky traps are bad, but have you ever seen what a cat does to a mouse, or a hawk rip it's prey apart while it is still alive? I'll be trying
the poison method above next. I'm still caging a lot of
hostas, but I am already seeing fresh damage this spring.
Pam

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 2:23PM
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kendra5

has anyone planted hosta with success in raised beds?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 7:44AM
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hostarhodo

Kendra you should have started a new post. This will get lost down here.

But, yes I have raised beds. My first hosta beds have been in place for approx 6 years, no major problems with them. If I learn how to post pictures I will do so.

Betty

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 10:00AM
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lisasmall(7a NoVa)

We have a nice big rat snake, two hawks (at least) and two outdoor cats from the neighbors, and they've done nothing to keep the population down (though the snake has done her part, for sure: photo.)

I think sticky traps are cruel and they're pretty tough on the human, too, especially if the animal is still alive when you find it.

D-Con is warfarin (also known as Coumadin) and causes death by internal bleeding. Internal bleeding hurts. A lot. I've had it. And the warfarin keeps on killing, including your dog or hawk or whatever that eats the poisoned corpse.

What we use with great success and a clear conscience is the Rat Zapper. My DH empties it when the little light is flashing and says they all look peaceful - certainly no limbs chewed off, as you sometimes get with snap traps and sticky traps - and the vendors say it's painless.

If it were me, I'd want to go that way versus the others. I can't be responsible for the pain that hawks and cats cause, but I can try to be responsible for some of the pain I cause.

We use the Rat Zapper Classic and you just tip the corpse out of it, no handling the dead. You can get them battery-powered (which is what we use) or, I guess for garages or sheds, etc., you can buy a plug-in version.

Here is a link that might be useful: RAT ZAPPER

    Bookmark   May 10, 2009 at 10:12PM
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nygardener(z6 New York)

Lisa, what do you use for bait, and how do you keep the Rat Zapper from getting wet when it rains? They sell a little box to put it in, but it looks like it could be easily flooded.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 12:34AM
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westy1941(Boulder County, CO)

Why not plant in 'Spin-Out' - the copper-coated bags. I doubt they could chew through that stuff.

I hate people.

Westy

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 1:22AM
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bernd ny zone5

I got tired reading about all those concerns. Here is my experience :

I use Decon, or what else I see at Home Depot. When I see a mouse,vole, etc. hole, I throw a few pellets in and cover the hole with bark. When I see a lot of holes, I say : its that time again to quiet these guys down, and I throw Decon into all of the holes, etc. and they stay calm. I have no problems with mice, voles, etc in my hostas, and any other gardening.

I do not know what is going on then with the pests in their holes, do not care, but they had a choice to invade my property, and they made a poor choice. They did not get the message for 37 years, tough luck!

Bernd

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 8:14AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Bernd, I got tired of checking and baiting snap traps,
re-baiting bottles and all the other ideas I've learned from others.
(Watering alone takes me forever)
I ended up doing what you do...I throw some Decon down the holes.
So far this summer I haven't seen any problems with voles.
I bought every brand of mouse/rat killer I could find to give 'em critters a buffet to choose from.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 12:24PM
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bernd ny zone5

Sassy,
Thanks that you have the same experience.
I use a similar approach to moles, treating my lawn once every second spring with an insecticide, which seems to kill the grubs the moles feed on. In case a mole wants to have more and shows up under the lawn, a spring-loaded spike trap helps, no more moles.
I noticed that once populations have been reduced over several years, also applies to weeds, treatment is needed only occasionally.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2009 at 4:54PM
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