Mole

Talpa europaea

About

An unmistakable animal, the mole has stocky, wedge-shaped body with a short tail. Moles spend almost all their time underground, digging out tunnels with their spade-like front paws and hunting earthworms to eat. Moles are common and are often found in grassland and woodland edges. Although most people have never seen a mole, mole hills are a common sight across the country.

How to identify

Moles are unmistakable: a stocky little animal, covered in black, velvety fur, with tiny eyes, a long, pink nose and two big, shovel-like 'hands' for front paws.

Where to find it

Widespread, found everywhere except for the Channel Islands, the Isles of Scilly, Scottish islands, the Isle of Man and Northern Ireland.

Habitats

When to find it

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December

How can people help

Once trapped to make velvety, fur clothes, moles are now 'hunted' by grass-growers for making a mess of their neat, green strips or pastures. Pest controllers are often employed to get rid of a mole problem. Encouraging farmers, landowners and gardeners alike to have a wildlife-friendly approach, The Wildlife Trusts are working towards a Living Landscape: a network of habitats and wildlife corridors across town and country, which are good for both wildlife and people. You can help moles by leaving them to dig in your garden (the soil in their 'hills' can be mixed with potting compost to make a great meduim for growing pot plants)

Species information

Common name
Mole
Latin name
Talpa europaea
Category
Mammals
Statistics
Length: 15cm (plus a 4cm tail) Weight: 70-130g Average lifespan: 3-4 years
Conservation status
Common.