Recognizable for the shield-like shell covering their bodies Nine-banded armadillos are the only regularly occurring armadillo species in the United States. Given their digging and burrowing habits, armadillos are regular nuisance animals to property owners. Armadillos are nocturnal and feed on a variety of foodstuffs including insects, small reptiles and amphibians, bird eggs, and even plant matter. If this ever becomes a problem, please call Critter Control of San Antonio. 210.742.8430 We will figure out your armadillo problems together!
The bands that make up armadillos' heads, backs, and tails are bony plates covered in leathery skin comprised of keratin. The rest of their bodies are covered in hair and bumpy skin. Armadillos are an average length of 2 feet and are usually dark brown to gray in color. They have short legs with strong claws, long snouts with teeth set back into their mouths, and long, sticky tongues. They prefer to live in areas of dense cover, such as woodlands, forested regions, places with thick brush, and even swamps and marshlands. However, as highly adaptable creatures, armadillos can thrive anywhere there is sufficient food and water supplies. Living in underground burrows, armadillos camouflage entrances to their nests with plant debris to keep out predators.
Armadillos Can Cause Damage
- While their primary source of food isn't vegetation, armadillos have been known to feed on crops. As such, they may wander onto private property, enticed by gardens or farmlands.
- The burrowing habits of armadillos lead to numerous holes in landscapes that house populations of the animal. These holes are not only cosmetically unappealing but may be detrimental to people who accidentally step in them.
- Armadillos often utilize roads, railroads, and bridges to move from one place to another. Since they burrow along these paths, armadillos weaken the structural integrity of roadways and may cause accidents.
- Additionally, armadillos can carry and transmit disease.
- In fact, the animal is the only mammal that can be infected with Hansen's disease, more commonly known as leprosy. If a person is infected with leprosy, it can lead to damage to the respiratory tract, nerves, eyes, and skin. It is a very serious condition and if infected, a person should be rushed to the hospital immediately.
- Armadillos can also transfer salmonella, rabies, and tapeworms too, so it is very important to keep your distance and let a professional handle this critter!
How to Get Rid of Armadillos
Certain exclusion methods help prevent armadillos from living on private property.
- Erecting fences or other barriers can keep the animal away from crops and from entering yards.
- Reducing the amount of water and fertilizer used in landscaping makes the consistency of land less favorable to the animal. Furthermore, this cuts down on the abundance of insects and small vertebrates that armadillos consider food and look for when choosing sites to burrow.
When That Doesn't Work
Since armadillos can carry disease, individuals should never approach them without professional assistance. Trained wildlife specialists understand and utilize the best trapping practices and humanely remove armadillos from infested properties. Contact Critter Control of San Antonio before attempting to remove or trap any possibly dangerous wildlife.
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