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Difference Between Gopher and Mole

Gopher vs Mole

A good lawn or a garden is a great place to relax and enjoy nature on any day and at any particular time. However, most of the relaxation and enjoyment dissipates when we see the occasional garden and lawn pests and their handiwork in the place. It is good to know and have some information on the unwelcome residents of the lawn so that proper action can be done as soon as possible.

Both gophers and moles are considered pests for garden and lawn owners. Though both animals live in the same environment, there are many differences between gophers and moles. To start, gophers are larger than moles. Their size is the same with a small squirrel while moles are usually equivalent to the size of a human’s thumb, making moles much smaller.

Their handiwork is also another telltale sign. Since gophers are bigger and wider than moles, their tunnels are also wider, deeper, and larger. Their hill’s entrance is often situated at an angle.

Moles, the smaller of the two, will also make a small and tighter tunnel. Gophers also prefer the dry soil while the moles like moisture in their ground. Check the plants in the area. If rosebushes are torn and destroyed, it’s a gopher that made these attacks. It’s their favorite plant. On the opposite, moles don’t bother vegetation or any kind of plant. They would prefer grubs and worms in the moist soil.

Another distinction between moles and gophers is that moles are totally blind while gophers have good vision. The eyes of moles are also completely covered while a gopher can open and see with their eyes. Both species also have a tendency to hoard their food in different methods. A mole would coat their food with toxic saliva and keep it in a special and secretive room while a gopher will grab the food, carry it in the creature’s pouch (near the cheeks), and bring it to their home.

Moles and gophers also differ in other aspects of appearance. Moles have an extended and bare snout with large digging claws that are not proportional to their body. Their fur is characterized as very soft and fine. Meanwhile, gophers have large buckteeth with a larger and more-built body. Their body length is also longer compared to a mole’s body. Gophers also appear more rat-like than moles. They have pouches in their cheeks which are often used to collect food.

The tail length of the gopher is also much longer compared to the mole. Upon first glance, a gopher’s features can be easily discerned by the naked eye while the mole’s features are harder to distinguish because of its fur.

When it comes to “being social,” the mole is the perfect ground buddy. Moles often gather together in large groups or families known as labors. On the other hand, a gopher would be content to be alone except for the instinct of breeding. It often builds its own territory. Gophers are comfortable above the ground and can sometimes be seen outside their “homes.” By comparison, moles would not get out of their burrows except for gathering food.


1.Gophers are larger and wider while moles are often smaller in comparison.
2.Gophers are a gardener’s nightmare since it preys on plants and vegetation in the garden. Meanwhile, moles love insects like worms, grubs, and other insects.
3.The two are also different when it comes to storing their food. Moles use their toxic saliva while gophers use to store food in their pouches in their cheeks.
4.Moles have large digging claws while gophers are identifiable by their big teeth. In terms of tail length, gophers have longer tails than moles.
5.Moles have no eyesight and prefer the darkness of their burrows while gophers have good eyesight and favor the outside of their dwellings.

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