Armadillos apparently part of SC sea life on Edisto Island
The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission is asking people to report any armadillo sightings.
Despite being native to Central and South America, armadillos have found their way into the southeastern United States. The first confirmed nine-banded armadillo sighting in North Carolina was in 2007 and, since then, more than 170 sightings in 46 counties have been reported to the NCWRC, according to the agency.
Now the agency is asking for volunteers to help with its NC Armadillo project by uploading photos of their sightings on iNaturalist or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with a photo of the armadillo and when and where it was spotted.
The NCWRC will use these observations to help monitor the armadillos’ range expansion.
It’s likely that armadillos are spreading naturally through the state without human intervention, according to Colleen Olfenbuttel, the commission’s black bear and furbearer biologist.
She said in the news release that armadillos are able to expand north as the state is experiencing fewer long stretches of below freezing temperatures.
“Whether armadillos continue spreading beyond their current range will be largely determined by climate,” Olfenbuttel said. “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.”