Dead moles hanging

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25/01/2009 at 19:11
I was out for a walk in the Peak District today with my wife. Whilst on our travels we passed a tree in Dethick which had 6 or 7 dead moles hanging from it. They were hanging from their tails by what looked like baler twine or string.
What's that all about? Is it some sort of warning to other moles? Can't think it was that as they were about 5 foot from ground level. Really wierd.
Any one know??
25/01/2009 at 19:23

Richard Roworth wrote (see)

I was up there in August doing the Coast to Coast.  One lady went in up to her thighs.  It is a wet place.

Did you see any Moles hanging on a fence at Raven Seat?  Apparently they hate moles, there was at least 30 strung up when I went past!

OM, This might interest you
25/01/2009 at 19:26
It was traditional for Mole catchers to "display" their catch to show their efficiency at vermin control to landowners and gamekeepers, although why someone would want to do it in this day and age is beyond me!
25/01/2009 at 19:28
Maybe they work for the Government are are warnings of the consequences of becoming a larger mole?
25/01/2009 at 19:30
Thanks guys. It was rather gruesome but I suspect that it is someone displaying their prowess at mole-catching!
25/01/2009 at 22:38

I have to say though Simon that I thought the practice of hanging birds was supposed to be a deterrent to other birds.

My Grandfather had a farm and his main produce was eggs and fruit.

He had around 500 chickens and raspberry, blackcurrant, loganberries and gooseberry bushes. (including an apple orchard)

He used to place upturned jam jars on canes with red paint inside on the premise that birds would think it was blood and whatever the truth of it, it did seem to work.

He also used to place small lengths of cut hosepipe between the bushes and it would stop cats digging around the lettice that were planted there as they would think they were snakes. It would also collect earwigs during the night which could then be disposed of during the day!

Edited: 25/01/2009 at 22:39
25/01/2009 at 22:45
I don't know why I related that really, I meant to say that local farmers when I was growing up used to shoot crows and hang them to deter other crows when they were seeding fields! At least that was the practice that I understood at the time!
25/01/2009 at 22:55
The cut hosepipe works though!
25/01/2009 at 23:41
26/01/2009 at 08:08

In 2007 on the PW saw what must have been 50+dead moles hung on a fence between Alston and GreenHead.

Too high off the ground to be an active deterrent to other moles.

Just thought I'd throw that in.....

26/01/2009 at 09:09
cysgod-du (Grand Slam 2008) wrote (see)

... It would also collect earwigs during the night which could then be disposed of during the day!

If people cared more about earwigs, there'd be fewer people around with bald ears
26/01/2009 at 09:12

Definately a well known and used to be well used country tradition. It used to be done everywhere with different vermin and pests. Jeez I sound old, but I remembered it all over the place and am still in 30s. Don't see it now as much though of course. Good to see it is still being used. I bet it has a pagan meaing to it that has been lost to modern memory. Bit like the time of the year that Christmas is and also Easter comes from pagan origins.

I once saw a mole crawling allong a tarmac road once. It obviously crawled onto it then took a 90 degrees turn to crall along about 2-3" from the edge. I just thought it a bit strange. If thge mole couldn't detect the edge from that distance what chance has it got to detect moles hanging from trees or fences? Bet they didn't think of that eh!

26/01/2009 at 09:39
I'm afraid hanging moles, or crows has nothing to do with our Pagan past (or present), but is a matter of economics - game keepers are (at least in part) paid to kill so-called 'vermin', and one way of demonstrating that you are doing the job is to leave the fruits of your labours hanging for the employer to see. Same goes for landowners & those they employ to kill moles.
26/01/2009 at 09:59
What, the landowners hang up those they employ to kill moles?
26/01/2009 at 10:03
Nick Hughes wrote (see)
What, the landowners hang up those they employ to kill moles?

26/01/2009 at 10:33

Stayed not far from Keswick last year, and saw the hanging moles thing on a walk with some friends. It was a first for me. If it's a gamekeeper hanging them out for a landowner, why doesn't he/she just leave them in a bag on their doorstep. Would be quicker than hanging them out I would have thought...I do think there must be some other country lore sort of reason for the practice.

Or perhaps it's just advertising for more business...though I don't recall seeing a telephone number.


26/01/2009 at 12:02

26/01/2009 at 19:24
Sorry Guys, but I hadn't seen it before. My wife thought it was rather gross but as they were at head height (for her) I suppose she has a point!

I've heard of nailing a fox to the barn door (dead of course!) but not the mole thing.

I suppose you could always use the moles for a bit of target practice! Messy though!
26/01/2009 at 19:42

If one hangs them up to dry out in the sun, then they make fine buffet finger food you know.

No wonder no one comes to my parties!

26/01/2009 at 20:02
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