Mole interesting facts are as plentiful as their appetite is uncontrollable. In this section some of the more interesting facts about moles are highlighted for your use.
- All of the North American mole species have sharp outward facing claws atop their front and rear feet with rear feet narrower and longer than the front.
- The Chehalis Indian word for mole literally means "hands turned backward".
- Green vegetation added to mole nests after the young are born add heat to the nest cavity as it decays that keeps the babies warm when mom is out for the day.
- Young moles disperse above ground at night during the month after weaning, forming their own territories within about 30 yards of their birth site.
- Moles reach sexual maturity at ten (10) months old and breed in their first winter.
- Constantly eating, a mole will consume 45-50 lbs of worms and insects each year!
- Moles are adept at their job and can dig surface tunnels at rates of nearly 18 feet in an hour.
- Moles are fast and that is a fact! They can travel through existing tunnels at speeds reaching near 80 feet per minute.
Living underground is serious business. To assist moles in getting enough oxygen underground their physiological make up is such that they contain twice as much blood and double the hemoglobin as other mammals of their size. This helps moles to breathe underground where oxygen levels are low.
The soft and velvety fur of the mole was once used commercially.
- In the 1700's and 1800's mole pelts were in demand for linings in hats, purses, pockets and other garments.
- Townsend's Moles have been known to make as many as 805 mounds per hectare.
- Broad-Footed Moles have forefeet that are almost as wide as they are long; hence their name.
- A single Coast Mole may make 200—400 molehills from October to March.
- The Star-nosed mole has a very unique physical characteristic that, according to experts, is not known to present on any other mammal in world, a star nose! This nose consists of 22 appendages surrounding its nostrils.
- Researchers have recently determined that these “fingers” are actually sensitive organs used to manipulate objects.
- The Hairy-Tailed Mole is also known as the Brewer's Mole.
The Eastern Mole is also known as the Topos.
- The Broad Footed Mole is also known as Topociego.
- The Townsend’s Mole is also known as the Snow Mole.
- The American Shrew Mole is also known as the Gibb's Shrew Mole, and the Least Shrew Mole.
- American Shrew Moles are not as well adapted for digging as other moles, and have forepaws that are oriented sideways. This allows them to place their front feet flat on the ground.
Surface tunnels connect with deeper runways that are located 3 to 12 inches below the surface, but may be as deep as 40 inches.
- Mole tunnels measure about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter.
- In wet weather tunnels are shallow.
- The Star-Nosed Mole is an excellent swimmer, and can stay underwater for up to three minutes!
- The Star-Nosed Mole has been seen swimming under the ice.
Moles may be well hidden from our sights but they have many unique traits. From creating tunnels at the rate of 18 feet an hour, to patrolling those tunnels at speeds of 80 feet per minute. From eating nearly 50 pounds of worms in year and, in the case if the Star-nosed mole, having “fingers” protruding from their nostrils, these underground patrolmen provide a great