Of Course, There’s a Vole Pandemic in 2021

Vole

After the year we all had in 2020, we’re no stranger to working through a pandemic. This time, we’re combating the strength-in-numbers issue that is looming across the Pacific Northwest. Voles. 

Voles, or “meadow mice,” are small rodents that become more prominent in the spring - once the snow melts and the temperature starts to warm, they come out of their tunnels to damage the new real estate (crops or plants) and to reproduce. Voles can have up to 5-10 litters in ONE YEAR - This means if not taken care of, your small vole problem will turn into a BIG one, and quickly. 

 

Vole

Vole Pandemic

Because voles are herbivores, their appetite attracts them to feed on the roots and stalks of plants rather than looking for meat to satisfy their hunger. In turn, they feast on crops or plants (grass seed, cereal or legume crops as well as lawns, gardens, nurseries, golf courses - just to name a few) and because voles are very dependent on one another, they can so quickly & effectively reproduce that their numbers skyrocket in a short time, multiplying the vole population on your farm by the hundreds in just a few weeks. According to Capital Press, voles can potentially kill up to 30-40% of field crops. 

Historically, harmful poison has been used to eliminate not only voles, but other rodents that may stake their claim in your space. If this method has worked for so long, it must be effective, right? WRONG. Much like toxic rodenticides or pesticides damage crops, harmful rodent poison has the potential to kill surrounding wildlife in the rodent-elimination process (birds, livestock and other wild animals). But if the vole dies, why are other animals affected? Oh, you want the simple answer? Zinc Phosphide. 

 

Geese

What is Zinc Phosphide and Why is it Bad?

As an ingredient used in common rodenticides, Zinc Phosphide is an inorganic compound that combines two elements, zinc & phosphorus, to combat small mammals like rats, mice, moles and yes, you guessed it - voles. When the animal ingests the bait or poison, zinc phosphide converts into a very toxic gas, Phosphine, that kills the rodent. 

For over two decades, there has been a direct correlation between the use of these toxic rodenticides and the wide-spread deaths of other birds (such as migrating geese) and other wildlife, particularly in the Pacific Northwest when it comes to voles. This is because when the animal ingests the vole that has just died from poison, essentially any other animal that tries to have a vole snack will also ingest this poison as well.  

During certain times of the year, farms are restricted from using products that contain zinc phosphide due to the harmful toxicity and secondary kill potential. So what can I do to control my vole problem but protect other animals? Oh, you wanted the simple answer, again? VoleX™. 

 

VoleX Pellets

Your Toxic-Free Solution - VoleX™ (effected areas, where to use)

As VoleX™ does NOT harm geese or any other wildlife, it is a viable alternative for seed farmers and other plant-growers who facing a "vole pandemic." You can safely eliminate voles (and ONLY voles) due to our active and all-natural ingredients. How does it work? The pellets contain a sesame attractant, luring hungry voles to ingest them. After ingestion, VoleX™ coats the vole’s stomach lining, blocking all communication between the stomach and the brain. This causes the vole to essentially no longer seek or desire water, leading to dehydration, circulatory failure, and eventually death.  

VoleX™ is a biodegradable scientifically-formulated pellet that is designed to safely eliminate voles without posing any risks to pets, wildlife, or gardens. VoleX™ also contains water-resistant ingredients, preventing the pellets from washing away in the rain as it does with ingredients used as zinc phosphate. VoleX™ is both a highly-effective and eco-friendly way to take care of this growing pandemic. 

Apply pellets to affected areas such as the bottom of trees, damaged roots, wilted plants, stolen bulbs, small holes and trampled grass or soil (these are indications of vole damage). 

 

Farm

New Broadcast Application Instructions: 

Because this has been an unprecedented year of vole destruction, the Oregon Department of Agriculture has approved the commercial use of VoleX™, the environmentally-safe way to protect crops against voles. See below for New Broadcast Instructions:

PREHARVEST BROADCAST 

When all restrictions indicated on this label are met, this product may be broadcast by ground-driven dispensing devices, cyclone seeder or by hand. Apply at a rate of 20-30 pounds per acre. Use the higher rate in areas with the highest active population level. The number of vole holes is not an indicator of population-level or activity. Do not broadcast bait on bare ground. 

POSTHARVEST BETWEEN WINDROWS 

Between windrow use is allowed at or after swathing. Apply to areas of high infestation between windrows. Apply with a ground-driven dispensing device (i.e. attached to combine), cyclone spreader or by hand. Apply at a rate of 20-30 pounds per acre. Only apply between windrows. Do not apply over or on windrows.

POSTHARVEST BROADCAST USE: 

Post-Harvest broadcast use is only allowed after all seed/plant by-products (including straw) have been removed from field, or after seed is removed and straw-load is left in field. This product may be applied with a ground-driven dispensing device, cyclone spreader or by hand. Apply at a rate of 20-30 pounds per acre. 

Vole pandemics have devastated not only the crops or plants but also the surrounding wildlife. Using natural products that only eliminate the targeted problem, you can safely protect your crops from loss with VoleX™. Ready to protect your crops AND the surrounding wildlife? Use our Store Locator to find retailers near you - or - If you’re interested in learning more, contact our team here at EcoClear Products by emailing info@ecoclearproducts.com.