Clean-up Effort

Honeycomb Community Watch held a cleanup day. They picked up trash and planted flowers. The community is a very attractive area.

It should be pointed out that the county does not routinely come around to pick up mattresses or other household goods that are put out at the road. The District 2 County Shop is good to help if you call them. Many of the part-time residents are unfamiliar with Marshall County policies.

Hebron Community Watch meets Thursday, April 19, at 6:30. A wonderful potluck meal is served and there are always interesting speakers.

Honeycomb Valley Community Watch's next meeting is May 7, 2018.

Henry King had more surgery but the doctors think this should make an improvement.

Mother-Daughter Birthdays

Ruth Prince and her daughter, Marsha Prince, both have birthdays this month. So do LeShell Smith and her mother, Lois Campbell. Happy birthday, ladies!

Armadillo Control

It seems that the armadillos have pushed out all the possums in the area. At least possums just committed suicide on our roads; they did not plow up our yards.

I have talked to many residents who say their yards have become hazards from the armadillo holes. Personally, my yard looks like we have hosted a tournament of bad golfers with divots everywhere.

According to the Alabama County Extension website, the nine-banded armadillo is the most widespread species of armadillo in the United States. It is mostly nocturnal and relies on its sense of smell rather than its poor vision. Their tracks are a “V” formed by their middle two toes. They drag their long tail behind them leaving a mark in the soil.

Patrick Cook, a wildlife specialist with Alabama Extension, explains, “Armadillos feed almost exclusively on underground invertebrates. The reason they’re digging the holes isn’t to damage the grass. They’re after the bugs that are in the lawn.”

Cook adds that armadillos can also get into vegetable gardens.”They don’t cause a whole lot of damage because they aren’t after the plants; they’re after the grubs and the other underground invertebrates living in that vegetable garden.

“It doesn’t happen overnight, but you can use various soil insecticides to eliminate the grubs that are in the soil,” Cook said. “Take away the food source and this should take away their desire to tear up your lawn.”

Use castor oil-based repellents to drive armadillos out and to prevent them from digging for food on your property. Castor oil is all-natural oil that penetrates the ground, spoils the food sources and creates an unpleasant odor inside burrows.

Trapping is difficult at best since there is not a bait to trap them by smell.

"The best trap is a Havaheart live trap that opens on either end,” Cook said.

To increase the chances of catching an armadillo, homeowners should set the trap up with “wings,” which are usually 2-by-6 pieces of wood that come out at a 45-degree angle from the opening of the trap. The “wings” help to guide the armadillo into the trap.

You can also make your yard less attractive by removing cover for armadillos. They like to burrow in areas with brush, woodpiles, low-lying bushes and shrubs. Make sure to clean up any berries or fruit on the ground, which attract armadillos.

This information and other helpful advice can be found at the Alabama County Extension Service's website, aces.edu.

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