Voles(?) removing leaves from young basil plants

I know I have a variety of rodents on my property :frowning:
I often seen these charcoal grey rodents scurrying around – dashing in and out of bushes when I’m out working in the yard.
Just the other day I found one in my compost pile when I opened the lid.
Over the last few days I noticed something chewing on the stems of my tomato plants and also removing the leaves from my basil seedlings. :frowning:
I’m guessing these must be voles??? There are holes all over my yard when I think they hide out.
How aggressive should I be toward these creatures? Should I build mini-stem guards and place them around my basil and tomato plants out of 1/4" hardware cloth that I have left over? Could I wrap the stems in aluminum foil? Should I try to trap them with rat traps? Should I ignore them? I’d love your advice on this topic.

if you see 1 there are many dozens. trap, put out tree/ plant guards. assume they will maim/ kill anything you have growing there. they are rodents and reproduce like crazy. trust me, ive waged this war in the past. they will girdle all but the oldest trees. they arent very particular. come winter they will be desperate and much more aggressive. get rid of them now.


do you think this rat trap works on voles? or would a HavaHeart trap work? We live near open space so relocating them would not be a problem.



Voles destroyed about half my stool bed over this past winter. I inadvertently created ideal conditions for them by having the bed next to my compost bin/leaf pen. Planning to spray my nursery area with a garlic infused castor oil to drive them out. Fence with buried hardware cloth, then trap/poison bait anything left inside come fall.

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i use block type poison put in 3in. 12in sections of pvc pipe with 1 end duct taped. only way to get rid of them quickly. trapping isnt fast enough to significally knock down thier numbers.

sorry! sounds miserable!

so - just making sure I understand - you get 12" long pieces of 3" diameter PVC pipe and you duct tape one of the ends closed. Then you fill it with block-type poison? Hmm. Sounds like a good idea, but I imagine they don’t all die in the PVC pipe but rather somewhere else?

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well i dont know how safe it would be in Cali but here i put them out around the property in nov. just before the snow flies. they feed on it under the snow in winter and die in their burrows underground. i just put a 2in. piece in each pipe and tilt it so the piece sticks to the duct tape end and then put them so the open end is tilting slightly down to prevent rain from getting in there. rodents are most active at night and burrow during the day so even if you dont have any snow, they should still die in their burrows.

OK- that makes sense given your climate - I’ll have to noodle on this. thanks

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