Monday, March 29, 2010

What's An Armoured Dillo?

If you live in Florida for very long (and probably most of the Souther US as well), you'll see one of these guys. But you probably won't see him moving around and being very active. You'll see him flattened on the side of the road after being hit by a car. This is an armadillo, one of the more common critters in the woods and fields around here. I've tried to shoot them before, but they will usually run away or hide as soon as they realize I'm carrying a camera. This guy was probably a little used to people, so he didn't shy away too quickly. He certainly didn't stop his constant search for food, so that's why you don't see the tip of his nose and his head is always slightly out of focus. That's because he's digging and moving constantly.

If you aren't familiar with these guys, they really are armored. That shell is a bunch of hard plates, sort of like an extra-thick fingernail, and it provides a lot of protection from a wide variety of predators. It takes a lot of muscle or teeth to get down to the edible parts. Now if a predator can get to the soft underbelly, then all bets are off.  But they can roll into a pretty tight ball to prevent just that sort of thing from happening.  But when it comes to cars, they have absolutely no protection against that.

There he is again, nose buried in the dirt.

I just thought there was something cool about this shot of the armadillo's butt. Where else on the web are you going to see great photography like this?

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