Definitions

genus Priodontes

Giant Armadillo

The Giant Armadillo, also, variously, Tatou, Ocarro, Tatu-canastra or Tatú Carreta, Priodontes maximus is the largest living species of armadillo. It was once found widely throughout the tropical forests of eastern South America and now ranges throughout varied habitat as far south as northern Argentina. This species is considered vulnerable to extinction.

These armadillos typically weigh around 28 kg (59 lb) when fully grown, but a 32 kg (71 lb) specimen has been weighed in the wild. A typical length is 89 cm (35 in), of which a third to two-fifths is likely to be accounted for by the tail.

The Giant Armadillo prefers termites and some ants as prey, and often consumes the entire population of a termite mound. It has been known to also prey upon larger creatures, sometimes consuming small mammals such as mice and rats.

The Giant Armadillo was classified as Endangered (EN — A1cd) on the World Conservation Union's Red List in 2002, and is listed under Appendix I (threatened with extinction) of the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna.

At least one zoo park in Villavicencio, Colombia -- called Los Ocarros -- is dedicated to this animal.

See also

  • Glyptodontidae - an extinct family of huge, armadillo-like cingulate mammals.

References

  • Database entry includes justification for why this species is vulnerable

External links

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