Eastern mole
Scalopus aquaticus

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Eastern mole
Mass: 67-140 g
Body length: 139-203 mm
Tail length: 25-38 mm
Colour: slate to golden
Young: 2-5 per litter

Habitat: moist sandy loam; lawns, fields, meadows, hardwood forests; tolerates extremely dry soils

Diet: primarily earthworms; also eats soil insects and some vegetable matter
Natural History:

Possessing eyes completely covered with skin, the highly-fossorial eastern mole is perhaps the species most ideally structured for life underground.

Eastern moles exhibit extensive variation in both size and coloration. In the northern part of their range Scalopus are generally larger in size and slate colored whereas their western and southern counterparts are generally smaller, and brown to golden in color. As a rule, males are typically larger than females.

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Eastern mole

Range of the eastern mole Distribution:

Largest range of any North American mole, occuring throughout much of the United States where soils are favorable. Ranges from northern Mexico to southeastern South Dakota in the west. East into Minnesota, Wisconsin, and south of the Great Lakes in Michigan, and into extreme southwestern Ontario. Found south through Ohio into Kentucky, then northeastern into Massachusetts and much of southern New England, and then south the the southernmost tip of Florida.

Selected Readings:

Arlton, A.V. 1936. An ecological study of the mole. Journal of Mammalogy, 17:349-371.

Hartman, G.D. 1995. Age determination, age structure, and longevity in the mole, Scalopus aquaticus (Mammalia, Insectivora). Journal of Zoology, 237:107-122.

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  (Text © K. Campbell 1998-2009)