Viola Stirling’s Nature Diary – 30 Oct 1919

How often have you seen a mole? Have you ever seen a mole? Moles are one of nature’s most elusive mammals. In Viola’s next diary entry, however, she almost catches a glimpse….

Here is the transcript for the next entry:

Oct 30 1919, p.7

Near Seton Lodge 12.20. pm.

We were walking along when I saw a mole

heap shaking and jigging. On going nearer I saw

little pieces of earth being pushed out 3 or 4 mins

after a large worm crawled out from the heap.

About then the moving inside the heap stopped;

so I suppose the mole threw up his heap

when looking for the worm.

When Viola was examining the molehill at Seton Lodge she mentions that she saw it ‘shaking and jiggling’. The reason you often only see molehills and not the mole itself is that they only surface for two reasons: to find water and to mate. The deposits you see on the ground are the waste material from digging when the mole is repairing or creating a new burrow.

Whilst some may consider moles a pest, they are remarkable little creatures. Pound for pound, they can move more earth than a JCB. Their fur can also move in both directions allowing them move both backwards and forwards in their tunnels with ease.

Viola notes that she saw a large worm crawl out from the mole hill. Moles, however, can sometimes dig up something a lot more valuable…:

https://www.theguardian.com/uk/the-northerner/2012/apr/23/moles-roman-remains-epiacum-english-heritage-vindolanda

 

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