pink fairy armadillo

The split between these two species was estimated to have occurred around 17 ± 3 Mya, around the transition between Early and Middle Miocene. Irrigation of the blood can increase into carapace of the shell to help lose heat and increase the ‘pink’ appearance. Oddly enough, on the black market, many of these mammals have been sold as pets. It lives in parts of Argentina and other areas in South America and is currently threatened by destruction of its habitat and by domestic dogs. Domestic dogs have also greatly preyed on these armadillos. A chameleon’s tongue can be as long as its body. The species is also poached for the pet trade or to sell on the black market, though most specimens taken from the wild will die within 8 days. However, that is a myth, the pink fairy armadillo actually dig through sand using their claws. It also has a torpedo-shaped body in order to reduce the amount of drag it may encounter while working in tunnels and a thick, hairless tail that it uses for balance and stability while using its other limbs to dig. It is also one of few mammals that does not have external ears visible. The Pink fairy armadillo lives in central Argentina, and occurs south of Mendoza province and north of Rio Negro as well as south of Buenos Aires. It has a torpedo-shape which reduces the amount of drag when burrowing underground. A thin dorsal membrane is what attaches the shell to the armadillo body. [2], A species of mammals belonging to the armadillo order of xenarthrans. [3], Pink fairy armadillos are nocturnal burrowing mammals endemic to the xeric environment in central Argentina. The evolutionary distinctiveness of the pink fairy armadillo, their limited geographic territory, existing threats and rarity make strong arguments to suggest urgent conservation attention. The Pink Fairy Armadillo is the smallest species of armadillo, characterized by small eyes, silky yellowish white fur, a flexible pink dorsal shell that is attached to its body by a thin dorsal membrane, and a tail that stick out from a vertical plate at the rear of the shell. Mariella Superina a biologist managed to capture this behaviour in a video below. The solitary, nocturnal animal is just about 6 inches long, making him the tiniest of the 20 varieties of the animal, and is found only in central Argentina. The decline in population for this species has generally been attributed to farming activities and predators including domestic dogs and cats. [2][5] These armadillos are very susceptible to climate changes as well; since they inhabit temperate and warm regions, cold temperatures could wipe out its population due to their low metabolism rate and the lack of fat it is able to store. Lastly, the shell itself is also thought to help with thermoregulation. Main source of its food consists of ants and larvae it finds underground. In addition to farmland destroying burrows, the use of pesticide can impact the mammal. Farming activities have generally been pointed to as the main factor impacting the pink fairy armadillo population. They move underground like swimming through water. [3], Fairy armadillos are currently classified within the subfamily Euphractinae according to the reference taxonomy by A.L. If these insects and invertebrates can't be found, plant leaves and roots make a good secondary dietary option for their underground lifestyle. Also, many of the armadillos have died during the transportation process from their wild habitat, and many more have only survived several days in captivity. These two species are morphologically similar: both have notably reduced eyes and reinforced forearms that support enlarged digging claws. According to the Pink Fairy Armadillo resource, the total population size of the species is around 100 individuals. The conservation status for pink fairy armadillo is still uncertain, and it is listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Fish & Wildlife Service, Pink Fairy Armadillo – Little, Pink, Armored Fairies, Pink armadillos ain't your Texas critters,, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with Spanish-language sources (es), Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 27 August 2020, at 17:44. She has only seen tracks, which stop suddenly, and appear to be where the armadillo has disappeared underground. The pink fairy armadillo is nicknamed the "sand-swimmer" because it is said that it can "burrow through the ground as fast as a fish can swim in the sea. However, predators including domestic dogs and cats have also been noted as contributing to the decline. A cheetah can go from 0-60 mph in 3 seconds. The pink fairy armadillo has this characteristic as well, but its shell is much softer and more flexible. [5], The pink fairy armadillo is classified as a fossorial generalist insectivore. The Mendoza region is known for having both warm and cold seasons along with wet and dry seasons. Individuals that have been caught in the wild had a tendency to die during or a couple days after they were transported from their natural habitat to captive facilities. [5][13] Habitat loss is also a large issue for these species. In captivity they remain active all day round. The navigation skills of this animal come directly from touch and hearing. However, their low survival rate in captivity has greatly impacted that practice. Armadillo is the Spanish word for "little armored one". [3] This solitary, desert-adapted animal is endemic to central Argentina and can be found inhabiting sandy plains, dunes, and scrubby grasslands. 1. This also refers to possible captivity conditions for this animal due to its desert-adapted characteristics. Any modifications in its environment, external temperature, or diet are known to trigger stress response, which is considered to be a possible reason for the failure of captivity attempts. Pink fairy armadillos have small eyes, silky yellowish white fur, and a flexible dorsal shell that is solely attached to its body by a thin dorsal membrane. [5], The pink fairy armadillo is 90–115 mm (3.5–4.5 in) long, and typically weighs about 120 g (4.2 oz). [4], This fine hair has been found to be beneficial for thermoregulation in an environment with highly variable temperatures. Many in the Americas continue to hunt armadillos for consumption, which is said to be similar to pork in texture and taste. The blunt rear of the shell is where a spatula-shaped tail appears – coming from a vertical plate portion of the shell. Especially considering their sensitive nature to the environment they inhabit. [3] Both species have allopatric distributions; both are strictly nocturnal but the details of their ecology and population biology remain unknown. A group is a 'fez'. An average high during the warm season is approximately 26.6 °C (80 °F) and the cold season might only have a high of 15.5 °C (60 °F) with an average low of 2.2 °C (36 °F). It lives in scrubby grasslands that display a variety of thin Larrea and Portulaca shrubs during spring and summer periods. It’s the tinniest species of armadillo in the world and uses its surroundings not just for habitation, but to hide from many different threats. They inhabit dry grasslands or sandy plains with cactus and thorn bushes. Its armor is flattened at the rear so … The temperature ranges are not extreme, which has allowed to pink fairy armadillo to adapt to them. The pesticides adhere to the bodies of ants and as ants are one food source for the pink fairy armadillo, the more one ingests, the sicker it can get. The pink fairy armadillo is pink because of it’s unique thermoregulation abilities. [2] Both national and provincial legislation is in place specifically protecting the species. In addition, its spatula-shaped tail protrudes from a vertical plate at the blunt rear of its shell. Armadillos sleep for 16-18 hours a day in their burrows. Conversely, it can drain blood from out of the shell to retain body heat which makes the shell colour paler. The Pink fairy armadillo has the nickname of "sand-swimmer" because it can burrow through soil as quickly as a fish swimming in the sea. Both species are specialized to subterranean lifestyle which was developed in their ancestral lineage sometime between 32 and 17 Mya. The average low would be just slightly above freezing. The average high temperature during the warm season would be near 30C with the cold season reaching just 15C. The Pink fairy armadillo has very small eyes and relies greatly on hearing and touch to navigate. Pink fairy armadillos have been harvested for consumption for decades. This mammal is nocturnal and solitary with a diet that is primarily insects, worms and snails. The similarities can be explained either by the presence of a shared common ancestry, which would prove the monophyly of both species, or by the result of adaptive convergence due to extreme selective pressures induced by their lifestyle (which would suggest the diphyletic origin). [5], Researchers have found that the pink fairy armadillo is highly subject to stress, making the attempts to apply any conservation policies (including taking it out of its natural environment) unsuccessful and extremely difficult. Because they have very little body fat and a low metabolism rate, cold temperatures could result in the extinction of this animal. 1. This rare mammal, unique to South America, is a creature with both amazing and very rare abilities and characteristics. Without it, this species of armadillo risk extinction. In 2012, the first theory has been proven. Though the shell is close enough to the body for these blood vessels to be seen through the armor, this protective part of the animal is only attached via a thin membrane along the spinal column of the animal. Field sightings are rare and individual pink fairy armadillos that have been captured in the wild tend to die within two days of being removed from their natural habitat. These varying average temperatures are the subject for the armadillo to adapt to. Since its blood vessels are so close to the surface, the armadillo can control the amount of surface area is exposed to the environment to gain or lose heat. If its fur is wet the armadillo cannot properly thermoregulate and could experience hypothermia during night hours. This solitary, desert-adapted animal is endemic to central Argentina and can be found inhabiting sandy plains, dunes, and scrubby grasslands. Since the underlying blood vessels are so close to the surface, the animal can control the amount of surface area exposed to the environment in order to gain or lose heat. [8] This species is the smallest living armadillo and is among the least known. These mammals have experienced a drastic drop in population over the past few decades. While its shell is much softer than and more flexible than other armadillos, it still acts as armor. Sometimes they will eat worms, snails, and a variety of plant and root materials. [5], This armadillo species is found in several protected areas, including the Lihué Calel National Park. The hard shell of this species is made up of 24 bands that enable it to curl up into a ball. Ants and larvae that are located underground make up the main diet for this mammal and in instances when these food sources do not exist, the pink fairy armadillo will turn to plant leaves and roots.

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