My yard is infested with voles. They make trails in the grass and dig extensive cave systems underground. They are cute, furry little creatures but they play hell with landscaping and drain tiles. They propagate with a vengeance and, after a while, begin to think they own the place.

There are several methods for dealing with voles. The first is to leave them alone and let them do what they wish. The second is to drive them away. The third is to trap them and take them away. The fourth is to murder the innocent little balls of fur and let their carcasses rot in the hot sun.

I’ve been through #1. I skipped #2 and went directly to  #3. That number has not worked well and during the time I’ve been attempting to trap them they’ve been building more tunnels and making more babies. They are a hardy lot, stealthy and secretive, agile and quick, cautious and industrious. But having all these admirable qualities does not make me hate them any less. If I don’t act soon, I’m afraid my entire back yard will disintegrate and crash into the pond.

I called a local pest control company, thinking that I could put the disposal of the voles in the hands of others and thereby distance myself from the nasty business of their slaughter. Yes, the pest control company would do the deed. They would charge me $395 for the work. They would kill my voles but they refused to guarantee that voles would not return. That, it seems to me, is not a good deal.

I will consider trying #3 if I can find a suitable means for doing it. I really don’t want to force them into a neighbor’s yard. Chances are, they’d be back in my yard at some point anyway. If anyone has suggestions about how to drive voles away, please let me know. You might be giving them their last chance for survival.

If I have to resort to #4, I just need to settle on a method of murder. Poison, though particularly devious and mean, seems to work best. I would buy the stuff, follow the instructions, and live with the consequences. But I won’t do that until #3 is attempted.

More to come.

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