A *RARE* shot of the Armidillo in a very unatural state
This page is dedicated to the eternal question posed by people throughout the ages…
The Armidillo Theory is not endorsed by Green Peace, Animal Rights Groups, Animals, Small Children, The Pope, The Olympic Committee or Anyone associated with “That highly purchased meat in a can”, SPAM .
For centuries, man has pondered three eternal questions.
Scientists have confirmed that the natural state of an Armidillo is indeed deceased. This was determined, by a poll of 5,000 tourists traveling the Interstates of America. Everyone surveyed said that they had seen at least three Armidillos during their travels, none of them alive. This startled the scientific world at first. Could this be the first animal on earth which never actually lives during its “lifetime”?
A grant was provided by a group, who wished to remain anonymous, to study this problem. After three years of intensive research it was concluded that Armidillos are infact dead most of their lives.
Some people were contacted during the course of this study, which claim to have seen an actual “LIVE” Armidillo. These people were determined to be crackpots and cultmembers. Their stories quickly fell with enough scrutiny.
Since the study concluded that the Armidillo is infact a “dead” species, another study was funded to determine their cause of death.
The following is a breakdown of the common cause of Armidillo deaths.
Since anything in the Universe if technically possible, a small group of the scientists have actually formed a bit of a religion surrounding the likelyhood that a “live” Armidillo may be found. If this belief holds true and a “live” specimen is found, the scientific world will again be turned upside down. Of course, if nature ever finds a “live” Armidillo, we’re sure that it will be taken care in a swift manner (see QPTS above).
An ancient Maya legend says that the first armadillos were created to teach a lesson in humility to a couple of minor gods. According to the legend, Hachakyum, the Maya Sun God, sat the two unruly deities down on a bench before all the other gods. The bench was suddenly transformed into a pair of armadillos, which immediately jumped up in the air — tumbling the two disobedient gods onto their backsides in disgrace (Gilbert, 142).
Somehow this humorous tale seems to fit the armadillo rather well. It is, after all, a rather odd-looking beast; the only mammal with a true shell must have looked nearly as strange to the early Spanish explorers as the duck-billed platypus did to the first European who spotted one. The name “armadillo”, or “little armored thing”, does originate from the Spanish conquistadores; I do not know what the Native Americans called it.
The armadillos belong to the order Xenarthra, family Dasypodidae. Their closest relatives, sloths and anteaters, also belong to order Xenarthra. The order first evolved around fifty million years ago, in what is now South America. Isolated from the rest of the world, and protected from predators with their bony armor, the armadillos flourished. They were relatively safe from predation; that is, until a land bridge developed between North and South America. Large canine and feline predators moved southward aong this bridge, wreaking havoc on the native South American animals. Fossil records show that around seventy percent of the indigenous mammals were destroyed (Gilbert, 145). The armadillos were not immune to these new and larger predators — although their shells are made of bone, they are rather thin — even a medium sized dog would have little trouble biting through.
Despite all of this, the ever-resilient armadillo was not completely eradicated. In fact, the animals staged a counter-attack, moving northward as far as the Ohio river valley. They held onto this territory until about five to ten thousand years ago, when for unknown reasons all of the North American armadillo species became extinct. It was not until about 1850 that armadillos re-established themselves north of the Rio Grande. Since then, they have spread from North Carolina to New Mexico. Further northward expansion has been hampered by the animal’s low resistance to cold temperatures; they have no way to store fat reserves, and must forage for insects constantly. Cold weather means no food; no food means no armadillos. Even short periods of freezing temperatures can be fatal (Gilbert, 145; Bertin, 518). However, they have had no problems with moving into warmer areas; current population estimates show between 30 to 50 million armadillos in the United States alone (Gilbert, 145).
Twenty species of armadillo exist today. The most numerous one (and the only one found in the US) is the nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus). Others include the giant armadillo (Priodontes gigas), the tatouay (Cabassus unicinctus), the six-banded armadillo (Euphractus sexcinctus), the three- banded armadillo (Tolypeutes tricinctus — the only armadillo that can actually roll itself into a ball), the hairy armadillo (Euphractus villosus), and the pink fairy armadillo Chlamyphorus truncatus) (Bertin, 517-518). The pink fairy armadillo — almost extinct — has a very unusual shell. It is only attatched to the animal along the spine, forming a sort of shield over the rest of the body. It also has an unusual tail, tipped with a shovel-like plate. This burrowing armadillo, with its large front feet and very hairy sides, resembles a cross beween a mole and a scaly-backed pink caterpillar (Gilbert, 147).
The Armadillo Theory was thought up during numerous drives between Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, FL. During these drives, Wendy and Todd would discuss very random and mostly obscure and hilarious topics. One of the topics became the armadillo after a great number, in their natural state, were passed.
I’ve kept the theory around on CD in it’s natural state and decided it was time to bring it back 🙂 Hope you liked it!
This page was brought to you by the the letters R , U and by the number 3.1415926 .