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Mike Merchant Prevents a Mountain of a Mole Hill

Mike Merchant points out a mole hole. (photo courtesy of Merchant)
Mike Merchant points out a mole hole. (photo courtesy of Merchant)

Mike Merchant of Wildlife Resolutions is on the trail again…this time after the critters that are tormenting Oxford homeowners in the spring.

We are specifically referring to the Eastern mole, armadillos and groundhogs and raccoons. We’ll address each.


The eastern mole which has a hefty population here in Oxford can destroy a lawn. Erosion is the number one problem, especially for new sod, that menace is associated with the issue. The mole is about seven inches in length, weighing only four ounces. They can burrow up to 18 feet an hour! March is an especially busy month for these pests. They do not have eyes which is why they prefer to stay beneath the surface. The most successful method of controlling these pests is to trap and remove them which Mike does effectively. Canines can also help destroy a lawn in attempting to dig and capture the mole. Raccoons, opossum and fox are all predators in addition to humans and dogs in trying to eradicate these intruders.

Armadillos are the size of a house cat and can dig tunnels five to 15 feet deep. They can undermine foundations and are known for carrying disease, particularly leprosy. Mike captures these pests in a live trap, luring them into via the scent of another armadillo. They are nocturnal in nature except for winter. They are carnivorous and live inside the burrow. In larger cities the cost to remove varies between $400 and $600. Mike normally charges a fraction of this cost to rid properties of this menace. The armadillo has been established in Oxford for some 40 years!


Groundhogs are newer threats having been around Oxford for the past 10 years. They will be resurfacing any day now regardless if they have seen their shadow or not. Can they ever do damage! They are known for tunnels extending downward five feet and up to 66 feet in length. They are most aggressive with June being their most active month. They have strong teeth and if they claim your property as their home, Mike can even the odds quickly. Groundhogs have other enemies above and beyond Wildlife Resolutions. Coyotes, bobcats and fox and hawks all will attack them. They are dangerous typically only when cornered, but don’t try to confront one! They carry fleas and ticks and can be quite destructive in the undermining of foundations.

Raccoons are another unwelcome guest to Oxford residences as April and May are their prime months for seeking inside shelter to have their young. In 2014 almost 80 percent of their population in Lafayette County was destroyed because of distemper. Rabies is the biggest fear should your house pet engage one. They are extremely aggressive and can destroy wires. They are the most active in the dryer, later summer months.

Should you have any of these critters on your radar, Mike Merchant is very experienced in ending their destructive ways. Wildlife Resolutions won’t make a mountain out of a mole hill, but rather will eliminate the mole hills before they escalate into mountains!

To schedule an appointment, please call 662-832-WILD (9453) or visit the website www.wildliferesolutions.net. They have a Facebook page too.

Steve Vassallo

Steve Vassallo is a HottyToddy.com contributor. Steve writes on Ole Miss athletics, Oxford business, politics and other subjects. He is an Ole Miss grad and former radio announcer for the basketball team. In addition, he is a certified economic and community developer and currently, a highly successful leader in the real estate business with Premier Properties of Oxford.You can contact Steve at sovassallo@gmail.com or call him at (985) 852-7745.

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