I Mailed my Armadillo


In Roy Bedichek’s 1947 book, Adventures with a Texas Naturalist, he recounts how often people have decided that a given animal must be exterminated because it is killing other animals or eating their eggs or food source. Mind you these animals were protecting are animals that we might not want to be killed because, in some cases, we wanted to hunt them ourselves.


Whether or not the threat was real hardly mattered. Facts followed suppositions and the slaughter occurred until a factual voice was heard.  The armadillo was one of those unfortunate animals to receive the kill-‘em-all tag. It was thought that they ate wild turkey eggs in large enough quantity to cause the bird’s extermination.   


I dreamt that I caught the armored guy and mailed him to another more armadillo-friendly habitat. What I didn’t know was that relocating him could lead to his death. A foreigner looking for food, shelter, maybe even a mate, in a strange place is easy pickings for predators.


Sometimes it is not easy to be a good neighbor. It takes a few iterations, good observations and communication to get it right.