February 24, 2010

Armadillos In Florida?

Wide Armadillo Photo

While I was out hiking on Honeymoon Island, I stumbled across an armadillo along the trail. I was pretty surprised to see one here in Florida. For some reason, I never pictured armadillos hanging out under palm trees.

Weird thing is, I lived in Texas for six months without seeing one even though they are very common there. The first time out on a hike here in Florida I ran right into one. Weird.

As it turns out, the nine-banded armadillos are common here in Florida. They are not native to the state but were introduced here in the early 1900’s. They now live throughout the state and can be found wherever there is dense ground cover (read more facts here).

I’ve never seen an armadillo in person before and was pretty amazed by the creature. It sort of looks like the result we might see if the Easter Bunny (the ears and size) hooked up with a rhino (the armor).

Armadillo Photos

Ever wanted to see an armadillo up close and personal? Probably not but here are a few photos of the crazy creature anyways:

Armadillo in Florida

Armadillo in Florida - 2

Crazy looking Armadillo

Short Video Clip

I also took a quick clip of the armadillo with my video camera. However, I didn’t notice until I got home that the macro setting was on so it turned out pretty blurry.

Now the question is, what animal will I run into next?

19 thoughts on “Armadillos In Florida?

    1. miss m

      Oh yes. We have many, many, many, MANY armadillos here in Florida. Why? An escaped breading pair of course!

      “The nine- banded armadillos that remain today are thought to be descendants of a pair that escaped from a small zoo about fifty years ago in Cocoa, Florida (Storrs, 1982 & Watson, 1989). But there is an event recorded of a nine-banded armadillo being introduced to Florida prior to the two that had escaped.”
      (source: http://bss.sfsu.edu/geog/bholzman/courses/fall99projects/armadillo.htm )

      1. Garett

        Recently on a family vacation to Clarmont Fl ( Just outside Orlando) i was shocked to find an Armadillo living in a burrow in the back yard of our vacation home. It would come out at night and roam the block for food before returning to its burrow. seemed to not be afraid of people as it came within 3 ft of where i was sitting and stopped to eat. The strangest part of this story is the location of its burrow,which was in the back yard about 10ft from the back pool and in an area with little cover or brush. located between a home and a shopping plaza.

  1. Pingback: Honeymoon Island State Park

  2. Sylvia Vetter

    Nice pics. I have to look at another site. We have just discovered two babies outer perimeter of our yard (woods next door) swamp out back! Im afraid their mom got run over; we are near A1A! I put out water and dog kibble. Does anyone know what they eat–will they be OK?

  3. David from Palm Trees

    Good pictures. You seem to know how to photograph a living thing!
    I personally love wildlife photography of both plants and animals/birds especially birds because it is difficult to capture quite a few of them.

  4. Reagan from the best summer camp

    That’s a shame you didn’t get to see an armadillo in Texas. They are the states official small mammal. Neat little guys. I hear when they cross a creek, they just hold their breath and walk along the bottom. Who knows, maybe that’s one of the Texas Tall Tales. Good pic too!

  5. Tony Stanziani

    I saw one today in my community, Cedar Hammock in Naples FL., I stopped my car, and kept looking at him, no more then ten feet away, he was undirturbed, kept on looking for food, after about 20 minutes he went back to the wilderness.

  6. Andy Johnson

    Good grief. Armadillos are NOT native to Florida, and they are NOT cute, and they are NOT beneficial. To read all this baloney are cuteness and how the critters eat bugs just makes me angry. Armadillos in Florida near to be eradicated if possible. Or, if not possible, then we need to work to limit the growth and expansion of these nasty animals. These varmints destroy vegetable gardens, flower gardens, corn fields, hay fields, and these varmints spread disease. AND THEY ARE NOT NATIVE. I wish nature-lovers could develop some ability to distinguish between good critters and bad varmints. Armadillos are not good for Florida.

    Andy Johnson, Jacksonville

  7. NvonS

    I just saw two in my neighbors yard. One was chasing the other. I bet we will have babies in the neighborhood soon 😛

  8. Andrea W.

    I just moved to Florida in Rockledge (Brevard County) near Cocoa and saw an Armadillo. It makes sense after reading the escaped cocoa pair lol.. I thought it was a sewer rat at first but after reading the posts it seems to have burrowed a hole under a rose tree on the side of the house. It is so wierd but interesting. Go figure. 😉

  9. Steven Quinney

    I’ve been living in my suburban Lake Worth home for almost 30 years and have never seen an armadillo here; but about an hour ago at around 1:00 a.m. I walked across the street to let my neighbors dogs out and just as I set foot on their front lawn I had my first encounter with an armadillo.
    He/she was about 10 feet from the front door and scurried behind the car and into the back yard. I thought it was maybe a possum but could clearly see its armor.
    I had always thought they lived in Texas
    When I got back home I excitedly told my wife about it. Then I researched it and remembered that just last night I saw 3 small holes beside my house like something was trying to dig under my fence. Now; after tonight’s encounter; I believe it was probably a possum.
    Glad I came across your site.
    Loved the Honeymoon Beach video.
    We’ll have to check that place out. Thanks


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