The NC Wildlife Resources Commission has sent out an alert to all residents to be on the looking for 9-banded armadillos.
Scientists are now asking for help in determining the full range of the armored creatures, especially in East Coast states.
According to the commission, Armadillos have long been native to Central and South America but they’ve gradually expanded their range northward as temperatures continue to warm up. So far the creatures have been spotted in 27 North Carolina counties, including Gaston and Mecklenburg.
“Whether armadillos continue spreading beyond their current range will be largely determined by climate,” said Colleen Olfenbuttel, the Commission’s black bear and furbearer biologist. “Mild winter temperature conditions are good for armadillos. Since they lack thick insulation and must dig for most foods, freezing conditions can cause them to starve or freeze to death.”
If you’d like to help, you can report observations to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The email should include:
- A photo of the armadillo
- When it was observed (date and time)
- The location where it was observed (GPS coordinates are best, but a detailed location description is acceptable)