Armadillos The Armadillo is a very different creature. It has tremendous claws, but no fighting instinct. They have teeth, but not in front, except for the milk teeth some have during infancy. They have long tongues because they catch insects. A strange thing which these animals have is a coat armor, unique among other animals.
They have bony plate armor on the outside of their bodies’. Each species has a different pattern for every little plate they carry. They all are great burrowers. They sink a hole with them in it as one approaches. It takes a good man to haul even a little one back if it is halfway down it’s retreat under the ground.
They are active, running with a tiptoe trot. Their trot is as an aged pony that is tired. They have a varied diet. They hunt by night. Today’s Armadillos are not the biggest armadillos that have ever existed.
The soil of South America is full of larger Armadillo bones from the past. Some of the past bones were as much as sixteen feet long including the tail. Some even migrated to Texas. There are several species of these animals. The Six-banded Armadillos were good burrowers and massive devourers of insects.
They also ate vegetable matter and were useful for devouring carrion. One specie called the Peludo was clumsy bet was effective in getting a snake to its armored hide and grinding the life out of it. It then eats the snake not effected by the poison. The king of the tribe is the Great Armadillo. It is a big creature in appearance, a yard in length from nose to tail covered with the armor. It even has armor on its legs. Its claws are very long and awfully strong.
The Three- banded Armadillos had a further protection. They are able to curl up like a hedgehog and present an impenetrable ball to an enemy. It is similar than that of a hedgehog or the porcupine, but it is more interesting because of the way they fit themselves into their armor. Their head and tail pass perfectly through openings in the upper surface of the armor. These openings are bony doors. The back of a typical Glyptodon was covered with a solid piece of bony armor.
The tail looked like a bunch of bony rings. The backbone was solid except at the neck. At the neck, there is a joint which allows the head to fit under the bony plate. Some members of the family had tails of solid bone. Bibliography 1. Prodigy – Grolier Electronic Publishing, 1990, A-section 2. The Book of Knowledge – Grolier Publishing, 1933-1935, A-Section.