How can a Star-nosed Mole Find a Worm by Using its Feelers to Touch the Worm Without the Worm Knowing and Escaping?

From Issue: Discovery 5/1/2001

Dear Tyler,

Because moles like me live mostly underground, we have very poor eyesight. But, even though we don’t see very well, we have excellent hearing. We listen for vibrations in the soil that can tell us if danger or dinner is near. We also have hairs on our noses and front feet that allow us to feel our way around when looking for tasty worms and other insects.

Even though all moles aren’t as fast as me, most can dig and move around pretty quickly. In fact, our wedge-shaped heads, pointed noses, and large forelegs allow us to burrow almost 50 feet of tunnel in just one hour! I hate to brag, but I don’t know too many creatures that can burrow through dirt around rocks and over roots that fast.

The reason why we don’t let worms escape once we find them is because we move just a little quicker than they do. One might escape every now and then, but for the most part we don’t miss too many meals.


A copied sheet of paper

REPRODUCTION & DISCLAIMERS: We are happy to grant permission for this article to be reproduced in part or in its entirety, as long as our stipulations are observed.

Reproduction Stipulations→