29 MARCH 1940, Page 21

The Mole Catcher Someone should do for the mole what

Darwin did for the earth worm; and if some recent upheavals in my garden arc a true measure, one mole must excel a thousand worms in its capacity for raising soil. I doubt whether any animal is quite so precisely adapted to its manner of life. The queer, broad, short shovel feet, the hidden eyes and share-like snout are the most obvious features; but the close soft hair is a marvellous repellent of the earth that would else foul the digger's body.. There is, I think, little doubt that this dark- loving creature is often peculiarly active at mid-day. Some countrymen say it works at four-hour intervals. It is astonish- ing how little the superficial runs fall in, even in crumbling soil, and the passages are so convenient that they are much used by other animals, especially shrews. They are easy victims if you have watched their ways at all, and do much harm in a garden; but the studying of them is a better pursuit than the trapping. One of my cottage neighbours was wholly in favour of the mole. It throws up nice crumbly heaps of top soil, which she transferred from her neighbour's mole- ridden grass field to her garden plot! How many a rook has found food in these heaps when the rest of the ground