Armadillos | Cingulata

Armadillos | Cingulata

Description
Description

Armadillos are a unique group of mammals within the order Cingulata, recognized for their distinctive armor-like shell composed of bony plates. Originating in South America, they have since diversified and spread into North America, adapting to various habitats like grasslands, rainforests, and semi-deserts. Their evolution traces back to the supercontinent Gondwana, sharing ancestry with extinct glyptodonts. Armadillos are predominantly insectivorous, using strong claws for digging and a keen sense of smell to locate prey. Their armor, while protective, signifies a fascinating evolutionary response to predation, making them a remarkable example of nature's ingenuity in the animal kingdom.

Anatomy
Anatomy

Armadillos are small to medium-sized mammals known for their unique protective shell made of bony plates called scutes. Their body is flexible in the middle, allowing some movement within the armor. They have strong, clawed legs for digging burrows and searching for food like insects and plants. Armadillos have poor eyesight but compensate with a keen sense of smell to detect food and predators. They're not known for vocalizations, primarily communicating through scents. These creatures are solitary, mostly nocturnal, and can vary in their ability to roll into a ball — a defense mechanism against predators, a feature most familiar in the three-banded armadillo.

Human Interaction
Human Interaction

Humans and armadillos share a complex relationship spanning centuries. Indigenous peoples in the Americas have historically used armadillo shells for musical instruments and utensils. In modern times, these creatures often appear in popular culture as symbols of the American Southwest. They're featured in animated films, children's books, and as mascots, reflecting their quirky and distinctive nature.

Unfortunately, armadillos sometimes fall victim to road accidents due to their slow-moving nature. Conservation efforts focus on habitat preservation and mitigating human-wildlife conflicts. As environmental awareness grows, so does the recognition of the armadillo's role in ecosystems, leading to increased efforts to protect them.

Common Questions
Common Questions
How strong are armadillo shells?

The armadillo shell is made of bone and tough tissues, so it is not bulletproof and neither is it unbreakable, but just something to protect the animal from predators and spikes from thorny undergrowth. The thickness and size of the shells vary from one animal to another. What is good about this shell is that it is not heavy as the animal can still run at a speed of 30 miles per hour.

Are armadillos blind?

It is true that the eyesight of the Armadillo isn’t well-developed. As a result, it relies a lot on the ears and nose to find food and perceive what is happening in its environment. The poor fuzzy colorless vision is because the eyes lack cones, a light-detecting cell. As a result, they are primarily nocturnal.

Which animals are predators of armadillos?

Jaguars, wolves, bears, bobcats, and even coyotes prey upon armadillos. To protect themselves, they run quickly or burrow into their dens. The three-banded armadillo is luckier, as it can curl its head and back feet into its shell to confuse predators. Armadillos may also use their strong and huge front claws to fight off predators.

Animals

* Under Development *

12.2”-16.1” | 31-41 cm
11.4”-14.6” | 29-37 cm
29.5”-37.8” | 75-96 cm (Body)
39.7-72.8 lb | 18-33 kg
12-16 years
Giant Armadillo
41.000
37.000
96.000
33.000
16.00
11600
GUIDE
3D
Giant Armadillo
7.1”-11” | 18-28 cm
7.1”-10.2” | 18-26 cm
15”-22.8” | 38-58 cm (Body)
17.6-37.5 lb | 8-17 kg
12-23 years
Nine-banded Armadillo
28.000
26.000
58.000
17.000
23.00
5400
GUIDE
3D
Nine-banded Armadillo
Pichi
20150
4.7”-7.1” | 12-18 cm
4.1”-5.9” | 10.5-15 cm
10.2”-13.8” | 26-35 cm (Body)
1.5-3.3 lb | .7-1.5 kg
9-13 years
Pichi
18.000
15.000
35.000
1.500
13.00
20150
GUIDE
3D
Pichi
1.2”-1.8” | 3-4.5 cm
.8”-1.2” | 2-3 cm
3.15”-4.7” | 8-12 cm (Body)
.22-.26 lb | .1-.12 kg
3-4 years
Pink Fairy Armadillo
4.500
3.000
12.000
0.120
4.00
27600
GUIDE
3D
Pink Fairy Armadillo
4.3”-8.3” | 11-21 cm
3.9”-7.1” | 10-18 cm
8.7”-16.5” | 22-42 cm (Body)
.66-2.9 lb | .3-1.3 kg
9-16 years
Screaming Hairy Armadillo
21.000
18.000
42.000
1.300
16.00
2650
GUIDE
3D
Screaming Hairy Armadillo
7.5”-9.8” | 19-25 cm
6.3”-7.9” | 16-20 cm
15.75”-19.7” | 40-50 cm (Body)
7.1-14.3 lb | 3.2-6.5 kg
15-22 years
Six-Banded Armadillo
25.000
20.000
50.000
6.500
22.00
820
GUIDE
3D
Six-Banded Armadillo
Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus)
Scale illustration of an average Nine-banded Armadillo compared to other armadillo species

The Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus) is the most common armadillo occupying several habitats in North, Central, and South America such as dry scrubland, grasslands, and rainforests. It feeds on insects and also small invertebrates. In some places, it is called the common long-nosed armadillo or nine-banded long-nosed armadillo. This animal is solitary, nocturnal, and can jump if threatened. The dorsal section of the body is covered in a body armory of bony plates, and some places, like the head, bony scales. The underside is pale and lacks armor protection. Besides, it has a long pinkish snout, long sticky tongue, and short legs.

The Nine-banded Armadillo has a body length in the range of 15”-22.8” (38-58 cm) and total weight of 17.6-37.5 lb (8-17 kg). The Nine-banded Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 7.1”-11” (18-28 cm), body width of 7.1”-10.2” (18-26 cm), and tail length of 11.4”-17.7” (29-45 cm). The typical lifespan of the Nine-banded Armadillo is between 12-23 years.

Series of measured illustrations of the Nine-banded Armadillo
The Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus) is the most common armadillo occupying several habitats in North, Central, and South America such as dry scrubland, grasslands, and rainforests. It feeds on insects and also small invertebrates. This animal is solitary, nocturnal, and can jump.

The Nine-banded Armadillo has a body length in the range of 15”-22.8” (38-58 cm) and total weight of 17.6-37.5 lb (8-17 kg). The Nine-banded Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 7.1”-11” (18-28 cm), body width of 7.1”-10.2” (18-26 cm), and tail length of 11.4”-17.7” (29-45 cm). The typical lifespan of the Nine-banded Armadillo is between 12-23 years.

Series of measured illustrations of the Nine-banded Armadillo
Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus)
Height:
7.1”-11” | 18-28 cm
Width:
7.1”-10.2” | 18-26 cm
Length:
15”-22.8” | 38-58 cm (Body)
Depth:
Weight:
17.6-37.5 lb | 8-17 kg
Area:

Tail Length: 11.4”-17.7” | 29-45 cm

Scientific Name
Dasypus novemcinctus
Lifespan
12-23 years

Drawings include:

Nine-banded Armadillo side view, front

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Giant Armadillo (Priodontes maximus)
Comparison drawing of the Giant Armadillo compared to other armadillos

The Giant Armadillo (Priodontes maximus) feeds on termites and ground invertebrates. It is the largest of the armadillo species living in South America, preferring savanna, tropical rainforests, and semiarid woodlands. This armadillo spots an enlarged central claw with bony scales covering the carapace. The carapace is lighter on the ventral part and black/gray on the dorsal part. The belly is naked, wrinkly, and pink. The head is conical and pentagonal scales cover the legs and tail. The front claws are extremely long for digging termite mold and searching for prey. It has more teeth than any other terrestrial animal.

The Giant Armadillo has a body length in the range of 29.5”-37.8” (75-96 cm) and total weight of 39.7-72.8 lb (18-33 kg). The Giant Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 12.2”-16.1” (31-41 cm), body width of 11.4”-14.6” (29-37 cm), and tail length of 19.7”-23.6” (50-60 cm). The typical lifespan of the Giant Armadillo is between 12-16 years.

Set of scaled side and front drawings of the Giant Armadillo
The Giant Armadillo (Priodontes maximus) feeds on termites and ground invertebrates. It is the largest of the armadillo species living in South America, preferring savanna, tropical rainforests, and semiarid woodlands. This armadillo spots an enlarged central claw with scales covering the carapace.

The Giant Armadillo has a body length in the range of 29.5”-37.8” (75-96 cm) and total weight of 39.7-72.8 lb (18-33 kg). The Giant Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 12.2”-16.1” (31-41 cm), body width of 11.4”-14.6” (29-37 cm), and tail length of 19.7”-23.6” (50-60 cm). The typical lifespan of the Giant Armadillo is between 12-16 years.

Set of scaled side and front drawings of the Giant Armadillo
Giant Armadillo (Priodontes maximus)
Height:
12.2”-16.1” | 31-41 cm
Width:
11.4”-14.6” | 29-37 cm
Length:
29.5”-37.8” | 75-96 cm (Body)
Depth:
Weight:
39.7-72.8 lb | 18-33 kg
Area:

Tail Length: 19.7”-23.6” | 50-60 cm

Scientific Name
Priodontes maximus
Lifespan
12-16 years

Drawings include:

Giant Armadillo side view, front

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Six-Banded Armadillo (Euphractus sexcinctus)
Comparison illustration of the size of a Six-Banded Armadillo to other species of armadillo

The savannah and even drier areas of eastern South America (Euphractus sexcinctus) are the ideal places to find the Six-banded Armadillo and its burrows. Some communities call it the yellow armadillo. A unique feature of this armadillo is the reddish-brown or pale yellow carapace covered with white bristle-like hairs. The forefeet has five toes. It is solitary, alert, and omnivore, with a good sense of smell, but has less-developed eyesight. The head is pointed and flatted and is also covered by large plates with distinctive patterns. Females give birth to live young ones.

The Six-Banded Armadillo has a body length in the range of 15.75”-19.7” (40-50 cm) and total weight of 7.1-14.3 lb (3.2-6.5 kg). The Six-Banded Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 7.5”-9.8” (19-25 cm), body width of 6.3”-7.9” (16-20 cm), and tail length of 7.9”-9.8” (20-25 cm). The typical lifespan of the Six-Banded Armadillo is between 15-22 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Six-Banded Armadillo in various poses with dimensions
The savannah and even drier areas of eastern South America (Euphractus sexcinctus) are the ideal places to find the Six-banded Armadillo and its burrows. Some communities call it the yellow armadillo. A unique feature of this armadillo is the reddish-brown or yellow carapace covered with white hair.

The Six-Banded Armadillo has a body length in the range of 15.75”-19.7” (40-50 cm) and total weight of 7.1-14.3 lb (3.2-6.5 kg). The Six-Banded Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 7.5”-9.8” (19-25 cm), body width of 6.3”-7.9” (16-20 cm), and tail length of 7.9”-9.8” (20-25 cm). The typical lifespan of the Six-Banded Armadillo is between 15-22 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Six-Banded Armadillo in various poses with dimensions
Six-Banded Armadillo (Euphractus sexcinctus)
Height:
7.5”-9.8” | 19-25 cm
Width:
6.3”-7.9” | 16-20 cm
Length:
15.75”-19.7” | 40-50 cm (Body)
Depth:
Weight:
7.1-14.3 lb | 3.2-6.5 kg
Area:

Tail Length: 7.9”-9.8” | 20-25 cm

Scientific Name
Euphractus sexcinctus
Lifespan
15-22 years

Drawings include:

Six-Banded Armadillo side view, front

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Pink Fairy Armadillo (Chlamyphorus truncatus)
Comparison drawing of the Pink Fairy Armadillo compared to other armadillos

The Pink Fairy Armadillo (Chlamyphorus truncatus) is a solitary desert animal inhabiting the sun dunes, shrubby grasslands, and sandy plains of Central Argentina. It is identified by its spatula-shaped tail, flexible dorsal shell, silky yellowish white fur, and small eyes. This armadillo lacks visible ears and the rear of its tail is diamond-shaped and flat. It is nocturnal and consumes both insects and plants. Other unique features the pink fairy armadillo possesses are a torpedo-shaped body to reduce drag, relying mainly on touch and hearing, and possessing enormous claws on the front and hind limbs for digging burrows.

The Pink Fairy Armadillo has a body length in the range of 3.15”-4.7” (8-12 cm) and total weight of .22-.26 lb (.1-.12 kg). The Pink Fairy Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 1.2”-1.8” (3-4.5 cm), body width of .8”-1.2” (2-3 cm), and tail length of 1”-1.38” (2.5-3.5 cm). The typical lifespan of the Pink Fairy Armadillo is between 3-4 years.

Set of scaled side and front drawings of the Pink Fairy Armadillo
The Pink Fairy Armadillo (Chlamyphorus truncatus) is a solitary desert animal inhabiting the sun dunes, shrubby grasslands, and sandy plains of Central Argentina. It is identified by its spatula-shaped tail, flexible dorsal shell, silky yellowish white fur, and small eyes.

The Pink Fairy Armadillo has a body length in the range of 3.15”-4.7” (8-12 cm) and total weight of .22-.26 lb (.1-.12 kg). The Pink Fairy Armadillo has an estimated standing height between 1.2”-1.8” (3-4.5 cm), body width of .8”-1.2” (2-3 cm), and tail length of 1”-1.38” (2.5-3.5 cm). The typical lifespan of the Pink Fairy Armadillo is between 3-4 years.

Set of scaled side and front drawings of the Pink Fairy Armadillo
Pink Fairy Armadillo (Chlamyphorus truncatus)
Height:
1.2”-1.8” | 3-4.5 cm
Width:
.8”-1.2” | 2-3 cm
Length:
3.15”-4.7” | 8-12 cm (Body)
Depth:
Weight:
.22-.26 lb | .1-.12 kg
Area:

Tail Length: 1”-1.38” | 2.5-3.5 cm

Scientific Name
Chlamyphorus truncatus
Lifespan
3-4 years

Drawings include:

Pink Fairy Armadillo side view, front

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Pichi | Dwarf Armadillo (Zaedyus pichiy)
Comparison illustration of the size of a Pichi (Dwarf Armadillo) to other species of armadillo

One of the unique characteristics of the Pichi (Zaedyus pichiy) is its ability to hibernate. It is endemic to southern South America, especially Argentina, in grassland and arid regions. It is also called the pygmy armadillo or dwarf armadillo. This armadillo is small, with dark brown armor, well-developed claws, and small ears. The tail is yellow, and the armor is white or yellow on the edges. The underside is covered by a coat of tan-colored hair. The pygmy armadillo is an omnivore, diurnal, solitary, and mostly digs burrows for shelter. Females give birth to litters of 1-3 babies.

The Pichi (Dwarf Armadillo) has a body length in the range of 10.2”-13.8” (26-35 cm) and total weight of 1.5-3.3 lb (.7-1.5 kg). The Pichi has an estimated standing height between 4.7”-7.1” (12-18 cm), body width of 4.1”-5.9” (10.5-15 cm), and tail length of 3.9”-5.5” (10-14 cm). The typical lifespan of the Pichi is between 9-13 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Pichi (Dwarf Armadillo) in various poses with dimensions
One of the unique characteristics of the Pichi (Zaedyus pichiy) is its ability to hibernate. It is endemic to southern South America, especially Argentina, in grassland and arid regions. It is also called the pygmy armadillo or dwarf armadillo. This armadillo is small, with dark brown armor.

The Pichi (Dwarf Armadillo) has a body length in the range of 10.2”-13.8” (26-35 cm) and total weight of 1.5-3.3 lb (.7-1.5 kg). The Pichi has an estimated standing height between 4.7”-7.1” (12-18 cm), body width of 4.1”-5.9” (10.5-15 cm), and tail length of 3.9”-5.5” (10-14 cm). The typical lifespan of the Pichi is between 9-13 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Pichi (Dwarf Armadillo) in various poses with dimensions
Pichi | Dwarf Armadillo (Zaedyus pichiy)
Height:
4.7”-7.1” | 12-18 cm
Width:
4.1”-5.9” | 10.5-15 cm
Length:
10.2”-13.8” | 26-35 cm (Body)
Depth:
Weight:
1.5-3.3 lb | .7-1.5 kg
Area:

Tail Length: 3.9”-5.5” | 10-14 cm

Scientific Name
Zaedyus pichiy
Lifespan
9-13 years

Drawings include:

Pichi side view, front

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