Armadillos digging in the yard: A very common problem in Orange and Seminole
counties, along with most of Florida. Armadillos will typically find a home burrow site
within a woodline near your property. They will venture out nightly, mostly just after
dark, to forage for grubs and worms in the soft soil surrounding most residential
structures. Armadillos are able to smell the presence of the food source burried as deep
as nine inches from the surface of the soil. Trapping can range anywhere from very easy
to very difficult, depending upon how they are travelling your property.
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The Nine Banded Armadillo (Dasypus
novemcinctus). The nuisance concerns
associated with armadillos have a much greater
impact than just the mess the animals can make
of some very expensive landscaping. In addition
to ruining your landscaping they also have the
potential to undermine the foundation of your
home--potentially causing it to settle and crack.
A less obvious problem also being that the
barrier you have paid your pest control
company to form around the bottom perimeter
of your home to keep the termites out--has now
been breached by the nuisance
armadillo--allowing the termites prime access.
• Armadillos are nocturnal and generally insectivores, feasting on grubs, worms, ants
and the like but will also suplement their diet with tubors.
• Life span in the wild can reach upwards of 15 years and females are capable of
producing a litter of four young per year during their lifespan--that can add up to 60
offspring from a single female armadillo!
• Home range will typically cover an acre or two depending upon abundance of food
• Adult armadillos can weigh up to 25 pounds. When they feel threatened they are
capable of jumping straight up to a height of three to four feet.
• Armadillos give birth to identical quadruplets each time they give birth. They will stay
with mom for roughly 1/2 year to a year before venturing off on their own.
Noise: There isn't a whole lot of noise associated with the armadillo unless you're
unlucky enough to be sleeping against the very wall he is throwing buckets-full of
dirt against. They can sometimes be heard rummaging through the underbrush
but aren't known to vocalize at levels detectable to humans. Probably the worst
noise associated with them would be from the family dog who will go absolutely
nuts when he detects their presence.
Structural Damage: As noted above. Obvious cosmetic damage, possibility of
foundation settling and cracking, and disturbing the termite barrier.
Droppings: Armadillo droppings can be found scattered about the burrow site
and is of little concern from a health standpoint. I have heard from other
trappers who believe that the armadillo droppings attract the opossum. (It is
very common for us to catch opossums during the course of armadillo trapping.)
Recurrence: With the size of the armadillo population in our area this will
almost be a certainty within a given period of time. In that case, why trap them
at all? Trapping and removal are the key techniques to dealing with the
immediate population, once taken away, the key to not having more visit your
property is to have your pest control company or yard service treat to remove
the food source--grubs and worms. Remove the food source and your
property will look a whole lot less attractive to armadillos.
Exlusion: In some cases, careful attention paid to entry points into your yard,
under sheds, decks, etc., will block the areas that are trouble spots. Exclusion
barriers can be erected to keep the animals out for good.