Breaking News:

LOCAL NEWS

Pest control experts detail epic wave of vole problems from Saratoga Springs to Draper

Jul 11, 2024, 7:59 AM | Updated: 8:02 am

SARATOGA SPRINGS — At a time of year when spiders, wasps, moths and other creepy crawlies are overwhelming properties and sneaking their way uninvited into houses, some pest control guys had a different answer Wednesday for what the biggest pest problem is right now: voles.

“The ecosystem has just said, ‘Hey, this year, we give you voles,’” quipped Jitterbug Pest Control co-owner Joe Clements as he visited yet another home with a vole issue Wednesday evening. “This is the worst year I’ve ever experienced.”

Clements told KSL TV his mom-and-pop pest control business has been fielding about 20 calls per day about voles, also known as meadow mice, carving “runways” and digging golf ball-sized burrows into unsuspecting yards.

That’s what prompted Bob Hyte to contact the company — watching the creatures wreak havoc on his front yard in two days.

“I mowed the lawn Monday night and there was nothing there,” Hyte said.

By Tuesday, it was a much different picture.

“I went, ‘What are all these tracks?’ and then I saw all these holes,” Hyte said. “If that’s two days, I can imagine what a week’s going to be, so it was an emergency. It was 911 for us.”

Clements and his son, Jake, scrambled out to address the problem, knowing just how destructive the voles can be.

“They will nibble on the roots of your grass, of your flowers, of your plants,” Jake Clements said. “If you have to tear up a whole front yard or back yard because you’ve got all these runways and burrows, you know, that can be expensive obviously.”

He said voles are capable of producing multiple litters in a given year and each litter can have up to 10 babies.

Joe Clements said the issues have been so challenging in Saratoga Springs, Eagle Mountain and Draper that sometimes new voles will arrive where the others were exterminated just a day or two earlier.

The father and son weren’t sure why there seemed to be so many vole problems this summer.

Biologists with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources suggested the reasons could include favorable conditions for the creatures, construction and development in the area and cycles in vole populations that tend to peak every three to six years.

Joe Clements said the only season he could remember that even came close to rivaling this one was roughly eight years ago, but that one didn’t really hold a candle.

“My theory is it’s related to the real estate out here, actually,” Jake Clements suggested. “A lot of that construction can stir up pests in the area.”

Joe Clements said he was certain he wasn’t the only pest control company receiving so many vole complaints.

“We’ve been in business since ’09 here in Utah,” Joe Clements said. “It’s never been this bad.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Power companies are not immune from the pressures of inflation and for us, that means we must pay m...

Matt Gephardt

How to save when higher energy costs have a third of Americans paying their power bills on credit

Power companies are not immune from the pressures of inflation and for us, that means we must pay more to keep our homes livable in these sweltering summer days. And those rising energy costs also trickle down onto us in other ways, i.e. an uptick in the cost of groceries as stores also have to pay more to keep the building cool.

8 hours ago

A woman is dead and her parents in critical condition after temperatures crossed a deadly threshold...

Kiersten Nunez

Young woman dies, parents critical after deadly hike in Snow Canyon

A deadly weekend for hikers in Utah has left three people dead in less than 48 hours, including a father and daughter in Canyonlands.

8 hours ago

Community members gathered on Monday to memorialize the teen killed in a West Valley shooting. (KSL...

Debbie Worthen

Community mourns loss of Judge Memorial athlete following West Valley shooting

Friends and family of a Judge Memorial high school student are mourning the loss of the 17-year-old after he was shot and killed this weekend.

9 hours ago

Department of Public Safety says the threats against state leaders is on the increase. (KSL TV)...

Darby Sparks

As Utah political threats rise, security measures becoming tighter, says DPS

The Department of Public Safety says threats in 2024 have already been high. Given the attempted assassination of a former president over the weekend, they say security measures could become even more rigid for political events locally.

10 hours ago

Judge's gavel...

Mark Jones

Utah man sentenced in smartphone scheme that defrauded investors out of $10 million

A 60-year-old Utah man was sentenced in federal court on Monday to 29 months in jail after he admitted to defrauding hundreds of investors out of $10 million in his smartphone company — SAYGUS.

10 hours ago

Investigators say negligence with fireworks resulted in a devastating fire in Layton that destroyed...

Shara Park

Negligent use of fireworks to blame for Layton fire that destroyed a home and vehicles

Investigators say negligence with fireworks resulted in a devastating fire in Layton that destroyed a family’s home, cars, and primary source of income.

11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

young male technician is repairing a printer at office...

Les Olson

Unraveling the dilemma between leasing and buying office technology

Carefully weigh these pros and cons to make an informed decision that best suits your business growth and day-to-day operation. 

A kitchen in a modern farmhouse....

Lighting Design

A room-by-room lighting guide for your home

Bookmark this room-by-room lighting guide whenever you decide to upgrade your lighting or style a new home.

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Pest control experts detail epic wave of vole problems from Saratoga Springs to Draper