ST. LOUIS ( -- The number of armadillos being spotted in St. Louis is on the rise!

Armadillos are migrating north because of the milder winters in recent years. Residents don’t need to worry about armadillos giving them leprosy, but they should be aware the animals can dig up yards and ruin lawns.

The professionals who are called to remove unwanted wildlife told News 4’s Russell Kinsaul that calls about armadillos are going up each year. Michael Beran of the Wildlife Command Center said since the beginning of the year he has already taken two calls about the animals.

"When it gets warm, they come out of their tunnels and they come out of the burrows, and they're looking for food, so they actually do more damage in the wintertime because they have to dig more, dig deeper, and so they tear up the lawns a lot more,” Beran said.

When they’re digging, armadillos are looking for grubs and earthworms to eat.

There are many ideas online on how to chase away the armored animals, but Beran said contacting a company that has perfected the armadillo trapping process is the best way to get rid of them.

Copyright 2020 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved

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