Dorset mole catcher Robin Elford

PUBLISHED: 14:02 24 March 2016 | UPDATED: 14:02 24 March 2016


No one remembers who shot J.R Ewing but forget the name of a good mole man at your peril.

While oil prices go through the floor, the wet weather has prompted an explosion in molehills. Robin Elford - a Houston oil man turned Dorset rat (et al) catcher - is on speed dial.

Robin, 52, turned to pest control eight years ago after tiring of his former life as an exploration geophysicist.

“I’d been searching for oil for nearly 20 years and I was fed up working away from home,” he says. “I was born in Poole and grew up in Swanage - I just wanted to come back. My brother has his own pest control company and I love working outdoors so I thought: ‘Why not?’

Since setting up Proactive Pest Prevention in 2008, Robin has captured hundreds of moles, rats and mice as well as thousands of fleas and dozens of cockroaches.

But moles are his favourite quarry.

“Rats and mice are predictable but moles are a real challenge - you have to outwit them.

“I read the ground to work out where their freshest tunnels are and lay traps. Moles are driven by their need for food - earthworms. As soon as they’ve exhausted an area, they move on. So you’ve got to be quick as well as patient. It is a skill and a bit of luck. You’re always learning.”

But there is just one lesson he refuses to learn. “I don’t catch snakes,” he says. “I can’t stand them.”


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