Thursday, March 02, 2006

Relief from Burrowing Animals

Repelling ArmadilloAnimals that burrow through soil are an especially troubling pest for homeowners and businesses, alike. Moles and voles are a nuisance in lawns and golf courses, and increasingly throughout the Gulf States, the armadillo has become a formidable enemy. All three of these pests create tunnels and runways through the soil, demolishing landscaped areas and often attacking trees and ornamental plantings in their insatiable search for food. Moles, as well as the armadillo, being insectivores, feed on grubs, earthworms, mole crickets, spiders, and other invertebrate pests. Voles, meanwhile, eat a variety of grasses and plant roots. "The options are repelling these pests, or trapping them," points out Jim Springer, vice president of Dr. T's Nature Products, adding that trapping programs are impractical. "For many, it's too time-consuming, there are no guarantees, and often, the expertise is not there," he noted. Controlling these pests is even more difficult, he said, because in some states, these animals are protected species. But a new product from Dr. T's Nature Products is registered to repel these animals from lawns, golf courses, and other landscaped areas, where they do most of their damage. Made up of 100% organic oil, Whole Control is a non-toxic, all-natural, biodegradable product that can be used safely around humans, pets, and plants. The product works by interfering with the pests' digestive systems. Applied as an emulsion, Whole Control penetrates through the soil to coat grubs, mole crickets, and root systems. When the unsuspecting mole, vole, armadillo eat these, the creature's digestive system is disrupted. Within four to seven days, Springer said, moles, voles and armadillos learn that the food source is unpalatable and leave in search of more suitable grounds. Grub WormThe product is capable of penetrating soil surfaces because of its unique application system, Springer notes. "We've got a specialty sprayer head that emulsifies that product with water, mixing it 20-to-1, and takes it into the soil 6 to 12 inches when it is sprayed," he said. The product is then re-activated, he added, each time it rains or the lawn is watered. Each application remains effective for approximately two months. (The product can also be applied using conventional spraying equipment - Whole Control can be used as a preventative measure, and in severe infestations, Springer recommends that a grubicide be applied to lawns prior to using Whole Control, to help eliminate the pests' food source. He calls this the "salad dressing effect." "Using all the available means of control in conjunction with each other to make the animal as uncomfortable as possible makes each method of control more effective than it would be by itself," he explained. For burrowing animal control, and a full line of repellents for a variety of animals, visit

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