Armadillos

Armadillos are not originally indigenous to the United States, but they were transplanted here, and are now common throughout the southern USA specifically throughout Texas and Florida. They are excellent diggers, and they will often dig a large burrow next to a house, displacing a lot of dirt. They usually dig several different burrows in a given area. They also dig up a lawn in their nightly search for worms and grubs. If it were not for their digging, this docile creature would not be a pest problem. While a calm and quiet creature, they still present a danger to humans if handled as armadillos have the ability to carry the bacterium that causes leprosy in humans, while the risk is relatively low it is still be to contact a wildlife relocation expert. To protect your home or business from armadillos, first learn about these pests, their behaviors, steps for prevention, and contact Stellar Pest & Wildlife should an infestation occur.

What Are Armadillos?

Armadillos are barrel-shaped animals covered with natural armor. In fact, its name in Spanish means “little armored one.” The armadillo’s armor works well against most predators, but not against cars. They are also unfortunately well known for their tendency to get run over by vehicles. Armadillos are prolific diggers that excavate land for food and dig profound burrows for shelter. They prefer to dig in areas with loose, porous soil, rich in insects and invertebrates.

How Do I Identify Armadillos?

Only one species, the nine-banded armadillo, is found in the United States. Its range has expanded into several southern states since it was first observed in Texas during the 1800s and as far north as Missouri. The average nine-banded armadillo is usually 15-17 inches long, roughly the size of a large house cat, with gray-brown coloration. Their heads are small and pointed, with a long snout and large pointed ears. They have large front feet and thick sharp claws. While named the nine-banded armadillo is is typical that this species actually have between 7-11 distinct band-shaped breaks around the center. As these are nocturnal animals we often look to property damage to identify that an armadillo is the pest in question. The most common signs of armadillo damage include:

3-5″ wide and 1-3″ deep holes

Uprooted plants and seedlings

Burrow entrances, located next to or underneath structures, sidewalks, brush piles, low-lying shrubs, etc.

Damaged underground wires or pipes

Armadillo tracks: four toes in front with elongated center two toes; five toes in back with elongated center three toes; all claws visible.

How Did I Get Armadillos?

Armadillos are extremely motivated to find shelter and food (grubs and insects) and unfortunately can be attracted to your property if there are an abundance of these insects, will destroy your lawn and gardens in the process. They are well known to destroy lawns and gardens even destabilizing entire tree root systems and building foundations with their tunnels. It does not take very long for them to dig up a large amount of land.

How Do I Prevent Armadillos?

Unfortunately, there aren’t a whole lot of options for armadillo prevention. The best option is to build a sturdy fence to keep them out. But just building a fence above the surface won’t do. You will need to extend the fencing at least a foot into the ground. This will help prevent them from burrowing under it. The only effective way to get rid of armadillos is to trap and relocate them. There is no poison for an armadillo, and these quiet creatures are handled easily enough that lethal measures are not necessary. Trapping an armadillo can be tricky, though as do not respond to baited traps, so it is best to call wildlife relocation experts such as Stellar Pest and Wildlife to remove them from your property.

How to Prepare for Our Visit

To prepare for a Stellar Pest and Wildlife’s bed bug treatment of your home or business, you should gather the following information:

* A list of any places that you have seen armadillos on your property

* Any holes on your property

* Any destruction of plants, gardens, and crops

* Any visible destruction to trees or sudden dying trees on your property

In order to prepare your home or business, you should:

* Box up or cover any outdoor furniture

* Keep all pets in your home

* Remove any garbage on your property that may attract insects

* Dispose of any sitting water such as in dishes, planting containers, gutters or other drainage.

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