Six-Banded Armadillos are mammals. They are known for their pointed and flattened head. Large protective plates arranged in a distinctive pattern run down their head and back. Armadillos have 6-7 movable bands on their back and very developed claws them dig in the dirt.
They are omnivores. The majority of their diet, more than 90 percent, comes from eating plants. They love to eat different fruits and leaves, but also eat carrion (meat from deceased animals), vertebrates (animals with a spinal columns), and bugs like ants and termites.
Many people think they have seen an armadillo like Rollo the Red River Zoo Armadillo in Texas or in other southern states. What they are actually encountering are relatives. Six-banded armadillos are only found in the grasslands and savannahs of South America. Six –banded armadillos can be found east of the Andes Mountains from the Amazon in Brazil to Central Argentina and Uruguay.
They are mature enough to breed when they reach nine months old. After 60-64 days of being pregnant, a female can give birth to one to three babies. At first they are very small. In only one month they become four times their birth weight. They are born with their eyes closed which open in about 22 days after they are born. When they do not have young to care for, armadillos are solitary animals.
Did you know…
• Armadillos have a great sense of smell.
• Armadillos are really good at swimming. Fat is stored under their skin and they can swallow a large amount of air, and because of this, they can stay afloat. They have been known to hold their breath for more than five minutes!
• If there are a group of armadillos together, the group is called a “Fez.”
• Six-banded armadillos are diurnal unlike other species of armadillos. This means they are active during the day and like to sleep at night.
• Six-banded armadillos live on the land, but when threatened, they find shelter in their burros or curl up to protect their soft undersides.
• Six-banded armadillos give off a special odor. They have special scent glands located in the backs of their tails.
• They are great at digging. They use their front claws and push the dirt underneath their bodies, and they use their hind claws to push the dirt behind them.
Six-Banded Armadillos at the Red River Zoo
• The Red River Zoo is the home of Rolo the six-banded armadillo.
• His habitat is located in the South American Exhibit in the entrance building. He lives with two White-Faced Sakis and a sloth.
• Rolo’s favorite food is the avocado.
Come check out Rolo and all the other animals at the Red River Zoo! The Zoo is open 10 am to 5 pm every Saturday and Sunday this winter!
Come see what’s new at your Zoo!