Dear Family Handyman,
Your magazine is known for its careful, detailed information on equipment and construction. It was disappointing to see you fail to meet that standard in your pest control section (June, 2012 issue). As a vertebrate pest control specialist (Google my name), I was concerned with the inadequate and potentially dangerous information disseminated by the magazine.
I will identify two problems.
1. Your information on moles was unfortunate because trapping is highly effective in the control of moles. Just read my publication published by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/pages/publicationD.jsp?publicationId=1234 Moles do eat grubs but lawns can be grub free and still have moles. So the information lacked sufficient context. As for thumpers, there is no research evidence that they work. If you are aware of any, I would love to see it.
2. Bat doors. Your field editor Chris Phelps is correct that a bat door is effective in excluding bats. What he failed to mention (nor did the photo make clear), that if they mesh is flush against the house, the bats may be trapped inside raising the spectre of potential rabies exposure. Information on bats and their control can be found at http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/pages/publicationD.jsp?publicationId=654
Bat houses are great but too often they are not installed correctly. See http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/g1575/build/ on their placement and construction.
I hope that the Handyman will provide a more detailed discussion on the important issue of wildlife damage management. The public deserves quality information.
Follow up: I am pleased to announce that the Family Handyman was open to my comments. They have asked if I would be willing to review wildlife control information provided in future publications. I responded that I would. I think this willingness to consider reader comments speaks well for the integrity of this publication (of which I am a subscriber).
About the Author
Stephen M. Vantassel, CWCP, ACP, MNI Author, Consultant, Speaker, Expert Witness on wildlife damage management Editor of NWCOA News Wildlife Control Consultant Project Coordinator-Wildlife Damage Management All Experts.Com