Literature Review: Armadillos of DuPage County

by Carl Strang

One of my rituals in the last couple months of each year is to go through certain scientific journals searching for published papers of interest. I’ll share my notes from a few of these over the next few weeks.

Hofmann, Joyce E. 2009. Records of nine-banded armadillos, Dasypus novemcinctus, in Illinois. Trans. Ill. St. Acad. Sci. 102: 95-106.

I had heard that armadillos have begun to show up in southern Illinois, so I was interested in checking out this title when I saw it in the table of contents for the 2009 Transactions of the Illinois State Academy of Science. Joyce Hofmann consulted with mammalogists all over the state, along with other museum records, to compile a map of observations to date.

Most reports were of roadkills, 91% were after 2000, 88% “were south of a line through central Calhoun and southern Greene counties.” This is the bottom third of the state. But the big surprise was that there were four sightings in northeast Illinois, two from south Cook and two (the two northernmost in the state) in my own county of DuPage. These appear from her map to be approximately in Winfield, and a point just northeast of there. No evidence of a breeding population has been found in the state, yet. The northern individuals probably were deliberately or incidentally transported by people.

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