The armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus) is a fairly interesting and unusual animal in the it walk not have actually a body covering of hair or fur. Instead, the human body is spanned with a protective covering of bony armor. There room nine movable bands throughout the back, and also the tail is covered with a series of overlapping rings. The underparts room covered v soft skin and also a couple of long hairs. 

The armadillo is about the dimension of one opossum. Its front feet space well adjusted for digging. Tracks made by an armadillo appear to have actually been made by a three-toed animal. Armadillos have negative eyesight, however a keen feeling of smell. Despite their cumbersome appearance, armadillos have the right to run quick when in danger. They also are an excellent swimmers and also can walk across the bottom of tiny streams. 

Armadillos are active primarily native twilight hours through early on morning hrs in the summer. In the winter they might be energetic only throughout the day. Armadillos are burrowing animals. Their burrows are usually 7 or 8 inch in diameter and up come 15 feet in length. Burrows are most frequently located in rock piles or approximately stumps, brush piles, etc. Armadillos dig a variety of burrows within an area to usage for escape. 

More than 90 percent that the armadillo’s diet is insect matter. They additionally feed ~ above earthworms, scorpions, spiders and also other invertebrates, as well as on little amounts the fruit and also vegetable matter such together berries and also tender roots.

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Damage 

Although armadillos room beneficial because they eat insects and other invertebrates, they sometimes end up being a nuisance by digging in lawns, golf courses, vegetable gardens and also flower beds. Some damage has been caused by your burrowing under foundations, driveways and also other structures. An illness is one more factor that must be considered when analyzing armadillo damage. Armadillos can be infected by an organism the is believed to it is in the person leprosy bacterium. Although armadillos occasionally ruin the colonies of ground-nesting birds in their search for food, there is part disagreement regarding whether or no they actually eat the eggs. Once armadillos reason damage, they may need to it is in controlled.

Control Methods 

Trapping 

Cage trapping is an effective means to catch armadillos, although they deserve to sometimes be an overwhelming to catch due to the fact that they are so unpredictable. Traps must be put in trails near fences or beside buildings. If the burrow is located, the trap should be inserted at the entrance. Trapping have the right to sometimes be much more effective if two lengthy boards are used on either next of the trap to funnel the animal into that (see Fig. 1). If the trap is put next come a building, only one plank is needed. 

It is not usually necessary to bait the traps as soon as funnels space used. If bait is desired, overripe or spoiled fruit works well because it attractive flies and also other insects. Other said baits room earthworms or fishing worms secured in a nylon stocking. 

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Cage traps with dimensions that at least 10 x 12 x 36 inches room adequate. Commercially do cage traps are accessible at countless hardware or sporting an excellent stores.

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Chemical Control 

At the existing time, there room no fumigants, toxicants or repellents registered because that the regulate of armadillos. However, since most of the damage armadillos reason is a an outcome of your digging for insects and other invertebrates in the soil, one insecticide can be provided to make the area less attractive come armadillos. Once the food source is eliminated, the pets will usually go in other places to search for food. However, prior to leaving the area, the armadillos may boost their digging looking for food, thereby enhancing the damage to turf or garden areas. 

Cultural Control 

Since armadillos normally dig burrows in areas that have cover, the remove of brush, rock piles and also tall grass will sometimes discourage castle from ending up being established. 

Exclusion 

Although armadillos deserve to climb over small fences or burrow under them, fencing or obstacles may be efficient under the best conditions. A fence slanted outward at a 40-degree angle, with at least 18 inch buried, commonly will deter them. If a huge area demands to it is in protected, this an approach may no be practical due to the fact that of the cost. 

Shooting 

In rural areas, shooting deserve to be an effective and also selective method of control. The best time to shoot armadillos is during the twilight hrs or in ~ night by spotlight as soon as they space active. One of two people a shotgun or rifle can be used. Inspect local laws and also ordinances before controlling armadillos in this way. 

Restrictions 

Although it is legitimate to catch armadillos at any kind of time, persons wishing to trap armadillos and also then relocate lock should educate local Texas Parks and Wildlife room representatives. 

For added information call the nearest office the Texas AgriLife Extension—Wildlife Services.

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