Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program:
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Project


The current and future distribution of armadillos: constraints, implications, and management

October 2021 - October 2027


Personnel

Participating Agencies

The nine-banded armadillo is rapidly expanding its range in the United States, at least partially aided by climate change. Its arrival heralds structural changes to the environment through its voracious burrow digging behavior that will likely benefit a wide range of wildlife species.

Nine-banded armadillos (Dasypus novemcinctus) are rapidly expanding their range within the United States, at least partially facilitated by climate change. It is currently unclear how much of the northern United States they can colonize and even less clear what the implications of their arrival are for native wildlife. Armadillos are ecosystem engineers that cause extensive alteration to their environment through their prolific burrowing behavior. These alterations are certain to change the availability of shelter sites, thermal environment availability, and predator-prey interactions of native wildlife and yet there is no research to explore these changes. Working with faculty and students at the University of Arkansas, Michigan State University, Bradley University, and the Michigan DNR, the Michigan Unit is exploring some facets of the distribution of armadillos and the repercussions for native wildlife. Understand the limits of armadillo range expansion will allow managers to pro-actively inform the public about management strategies to reduce conflict with humans as well as to better understand the implications for native wildlife that may soon be co-existing with armadillos.

Research Publications Publication Date
DeGregorio, B.A., Veon, J.T. and Massey, A.. 2022. Wildlife associates of nine‐banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus) burrows in Arkansas. Ecology and Evolution, 12(5), 8858. | Download June 2022
DeGregorio, B.A., M. McElroy, and E.P. Johansson. 2023. Occupancy and Activity Patterns of Nine-Banded Armadillos (Dasypus novemcinctus) in a Suburban Environment. Diversity 15: https://doi.org/10.3390/d15080907. | Download July 2023
Presentations Presentation Date
DeGregorio, B.A. 2024. Armadillos are coming: Why we should care. Michigan Department of Natural Resources Annual Meeting. March 2024