At up to 8 inches long, moles are the largest common pest to make visible tunnels in lawns. These pests create feeding tunnels as they seek out earthworm and insect meals. Signs of mole-related lawn tunnels include:
Also known as meadow mice, voles create trench-like runways on top of the soil. Depending on the season, they rely on snow, mulch, grass or groundcover for tunnel-like camouflage. They also feed on grass roots. Signs of vole-related lawn tunnels include:
At less than 2 inches long, mole crickets are one of the smallest — and most destructive — tunnel-making lawn pests. They damage lawns by tunneling and feeding heavily on grass roots and shoots. Signs of mole cricket lawn tunnels include:
Photo credit: University of Georgia, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org (CC BY 3.0 US)
Remedies for lawn tunnel damage depend on the pest involved. For moles, pressing tunnels back in place may be enough. Grass-eating vole and mole cricket damage requires more. If needed, add soil to vole trenches, then reseed or repair your lawn with quality grass seed. Extensive mole cricket damage may require overseeding or starting a new lawn.