(09/22/17)  This afternoon, I saw my first “living” armadillo in Cape Giradeau since moving here.  Over the last few months, I have discovered quite a few of the little creatures “dead” in the middle of the roads and highways.  This afternoon, while driving down Perryville Avenue, before turning onto Sheridan Drive, I saw a small-sized one slowly trudging across the road, trying to reach safety on the other side.  When I first saw them in Southeast Missouri, I was quite shocked thinking their only habitat was in the deeper south; Texas, Louisianna, Florida, Mexico, South America.  Recently, after reading a bit of research, I learned that during the latter half of the 20th century, they started migrating North;  they were actually first seen in the state of Missouri about 40 years ago, and have even been seen as far north as Kansas City.  They are odd-looking animals and, according to some of my neighbors, can be quite destructive to lawns and gardens.  I always feel a lump in my throat when I pass a dead animal in the road; usually, they are squirrels, rabbits, racoons, and skunks, but I have truly developed a soft spot for these little armadillos, who can’t run very fast and are more susceptible to speeding cars than other animals that have the ability to scamper away quickly when danger approaches.  


.© Mary Darby 2016