How to Get Rid of Pests that Dig Holes in Your Yard

One fine morning, you were doing your own business, gardening, and admiring your flowers, fruits, and vegetables. But then you saw holes in the ground. Not good. It means pests are conducting some underground business on your property, and that’s going to hurt your vegetation. So, how do you stop them from digging holes?

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First, Identify the Ground Diggers

Catching pests in the act can be difficult because they make a move when you’re not looking. But did you know it’s possible to recognize the culprits without seeing them?

You can identify the pests by investigating the holes in your yard. Some common suspects include moles, skunks, groundhogs, raccoons, and voles.


Moles are small, burrowing mammals that feed on insects. Their tunneling activities near the surface create raised ridges and occasional mounds on the lawn. These tunnels can lead to patches of dead grass and disturbed soil but rarely produce visible holes.


Skunks create small, shallow, cone-shaped holes that can be found scattered across the lawn. This is a sign that they’re hunting for grubs and insects. They are also known to dig burrows for shelter, usually found under decks or sheds, and are marked by a single hole.


Groundhogs, or woodchucks, build large, elaborate burrows in dry soil. These burrows can be extensive, often featuring multiple chambers and exits, indicated by mounds of displaced dirt. If left unchecked, these burrows can damage plant roots and compromise ground stability.


Raccoons are known for their agility and often dig holes through yards as they search for food. They create larger, more noticeable holes as they forage for insects, worms, and grubs. Their incessant digging is often accompanied by signs of rooting and overturned soil or plants.


Voles are small rodents that cause distinct damage in yards. They create a network of shallow, surface-level runways across the lawn, which become visible as they eat away grass blades and stems.

Unlike moles, voles don’t leave behind mounds of soil, but their presence is evident through the gnawing marks on the base of plants and roots, especially in areas with dense ground cover or mulch.

How to Prevent Pests from Digging Holes in Your Yard

Prevention is the key to a pest-free yard. By deterring pests before they start digging, you can maintain the health and beauty of your lawn. Here are some effective methods to prevent or stop pests from digging holes in your yard.

Perform Regular Lawn Maintenance

Keep your lawn regularly mowed, clear out overgrowth, and ensure no stagnant water. All these go a long way in deterring pests. If your lawn is well-kept, there will be limited hiding spots for pests to burrow and nest.

Plant Natural Repellents

Consider adding pest-repelling plants, such as marigolds and lavender, to your garden. Natural repellents are another great way to prevent pests from destroying your yard. Castor oil is effective against moles, as its scent and taste are repulsive to them.

For a broader range of pests, consider a homemade mixture of garlic and pepper, which can be easily sprayed around the yard. These solutions keep pests away without harming your lawn.

Put Up Fences

Installing underground fencing that goes several feet deep can block groundhogs, voles, and other digging pests from infiltrating your property.

Level up your defenses by adding a border of gravel or rocks around the perimeter of your yard. These materials make the soil less attractive and more challenging for pests to dig through.

Regularly Inspect Your Lawn

This is crucial for early pest detection. Look for indicators of pest presence, such as abnormal lawn damage, holes, or signs of digging. Early detection is key to preventing larger infestations.

Pay attention to any new or unusual changes in your yard’s appearance, including disturbed soil areas or unexpected dead patches in the grass. Practice a bi-weekly inspection routine to maintain the health and aesthetics of your yard.

The Value of Professional Pest Control

If there’s extensive or persistent damage to your yard, contact the wildlife removal experts near you to resolve the issues before they get worse. Pest control professionals not only solve your present pest problems but also implement preventive measures for your peace of mind moving forward.

Their expertise in identifying potential risk areas and applying appropriate treatments can save you time, energy, and resources in the long run.

In Summary

Maintaining your yard can be tough, and maybe frustrating, when pests constantly burrow into your property. Extensive tunneling can weaken the soil structure, cause uneven ground, and lead to erosion, further ruining your yard.

With a bit of research, you can determine which pest conducts underground business without your permission. Some effective measures to ward off pests include extending the fences deep below the soil, adding natural pest repellents, regular garden maintenance, and hiring pest control experts.

About the Author

Luqman Butter has been a pest control technician for over 20 years. He is passionate about solving people’s pest and wildlife control problems through innovative, eco-friendly, and humane methods. Luqman currently works for Pestend Pest Control. He believes that pest control is a science and feels that his function in his community is very important since he helps people live in peace without causing unnecessary harm to animals.

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