Finding freshly dug mounds of soil in the garden, lawn, or landscape might be a sign of gophers or moles. Their mounds look similar and are frequently confused for each other.
Figure 1 shows a mole mound, which usually is volano-shaped with a circular margin. Figure 2 illustrates a gopher mound and the characteristic crescent shape and plugged opening. Actual mounds may look slightly different from these pictures, but the descriptions are typical of the two vertebrates.
The burrowing activity of both moles and gophers can damage plant roots by dislodging and drying them out. Mounds themselves can be an aesthetic problem in turf and landscapes, but they can also be tripping hazards. Both species eat plant material, and in...
Raccoons may look adorable at times, but when this nocturnal animal appears in your yard at night, its “cuteness” factor quickly disappears.
Raccoons normally live in natural areas, but they can easily adapt and survive in urban settings where they may damage garden plants, knock over garbage cans or compost piles, and eat backyard fruits, nuts and vegetables. Female raccoons may nest in backyards, attics, or beneath decks or homes.
Raccoons are known to carry parasites and diseases so family pets could be at risk if they come into contact with these animals. If you live in an area where raccoons are common, make sure to get your pets vaccinated for rabies and distemper.
If raccoons become a...
- Author: Stephanie Parreira
National Honey Bee Day is celebrated on the third Saturday of every August. This year it falls on Saturday the 19
Many areas in California have experienced a hot and dusty summer, perfect conditions that favor spider mites! These tiny arachnids are plant pests whose numbers can get very high during the warm months of June through September.
Spider mites damage plants by sucking cell contents from leaves. If you see plant leaves with light dots on them (stippling) that turn yellowish or reddish and drop off, and/or large amounts of fine webbing on leaves, twigs, and fruit, your plants might have spider mites.
Spider mites look like tiny, moving dots that will move around rapidly when disturbed. To correctly identify these pests, use a 10x hands lens to view...
Squirrels commonly cause damage around homes and gardens when they dig holes, feed on fruits and nuts, gnaw on cables, or chew their way into buildings.
If you know your arboreal visitors are tree squirrels, you can read more about them and their management in the newly revised UC IPM Pest Note: Tree...