2 dead armadillos found near Holland


LAKETOWN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Two more dead armadillos have been found in the Holland area.

Trevor Barnhill took photos of the creature Sunday along 66th Street near Laketown beach, south of Holland.

When he got home, he Googled armadillos and found an article on woodtv.com from April 2015 about another dead armadillo being found on Paw Paw Drive between Holland and Zeeland.

Trevor Barnhill says he found this dead armadillo south of Holland on March 13, 2016.

Later Sunday, another viewer, Kyle Busscher, sent 24 Hour News 8 a photo of another dead armadillo that he said he found while fishing at Hawthorn Pond in Holland Township.

The three locations where armadillos have been found are several miles apart.

Last year, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources told 24 Hour News 8 that armadillo was probably either an escaped pet or had been brought to the area by someone on spring break.

Nine-banded armadillos prefer warm, wet climates. It’s unlikely one would travel all the way to Michigan on its own because the winter weather here is too cold. The animals have very little body fat and can’t survive once temperatures average around 28 degrees, according to a website dedicated to armadillos. West Michigan’s average temperature in January is 25 degrees.

However, armadillos have been spotted in the wild as far north as Illinois in recent years.

Nine-banded armadillos are generally about 2.5 feet long and weigh about 12 pounds, according to the National Wildlife Federation. In the wild, their typical lifespan is between seven and 20 years.

It’s worth noting that armadillos can carry leprosy, though the National Wildlife Federation says cases in which a human has gotten the disease from one of the animals are “extremely rare.”—–Learn more about armadillos:Armadillo OnlineNational Wildlife Federation on armadillosNational Geographic on armadillosUniversity of Michigan on Animal Diversity Web

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