is endemic to Bolivia and northern Chile, in the Andes mountain range. (Yensen et al, 1994)
lives in grasslands at high altitudes, in an ecosystem called the Puna. (Montgomery, 1985)
Head and body length reaches 220 to 400 mm and the tail length is 90 to 175 mm. The head shield is 60 mm long and 60 mm wide. This armadillo has 18 dorsal bands, 8 of which are movable. (Nowak, 1999) Unlike other armadillos, Chaetophractus nationi has hair between the majority of its sclaes, and is completely covered on its legs and underside. Color varies from yellowish to light brown. As with other Dasypodids, the teeth are not covered in enamel, and grow continuously. Body temperature is regulated somewhat ectothermically, and burrows are used to cool down in the summer. (Yensen et al, 1994)
is solitary, with males and females only coming together for mating purposes.
After mating in the fall, females are pregnant for two months before giving birth to a litter of two. After birth, an individual immediately develops epidermal scales that eventually harden and join to form armor plates. Each infant is fully dependent on its mother until weaning, which occurs at about 50 days. Young rely heavily on their mothers for almost a month until they develop adult teeth and begin to forage. Sexual maturity is reached at about nine months. (Grzimek, 1990)
The female is solely responsible for parental care in this species.
is nocturnal during the summer months to avoid the heat of the day and to maximize feeding time at night. However, in the winter nocturnal habits are reversed, and foraging occurs in the day time. These solitary creatures dig deep burrows on slopes to sleep in, but rarely use a burrow more than once. (Yensen et al, 1994)
Each individual's home range is approximately 3.4 hectares. (Montgomery, 1985)
Chaetophractus nationi is omnivorous, eating some small vertebrates, many insects, and some vegetation. (Greegor 1980)
The bony plates of armour that surround this animal's body serve as protection from predators. (Nixon, 2000)
May limit harmful insect populations. (Montgomery 1985)
In Bolivia and Chile, Andean Hairy Armadillos have been used for meat, musical instruments, decorations, good luck charms, and medicine for rheumatism. (Yensen et al, 1994)
is so endangered that CITES has issued a no import/export policy for trade of this species. (1996 IUCN Red List)
Anna Frostic (author), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Bret Weinstein (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
living in the southern part of the New World. In other words, Central and South America.
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
flesh of dead animals.
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
a substance used for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease
animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.
fertilization takes place outside the female's body
parental care is carried out by females
union of egg and spermatozoan
A substance that provides both nutrients and energy to a living thing.
having a body temperature that fluctuates with that of the immediate environment; having no mechanism or a poorly developed mechanism for regulating internal body temperature.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
This terrestrial biome includes summits of high mountains, either without vegetation or covered by low, tundra-like vegetation.
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
active during the night
an animal that mainly eats all kinds of things, including plants and animals
the kind of polygamy in which a female pairs with several males, each of which also pairs with several different females.
breeding is confined to a particular season
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
digs and breaks up soil so air and water can get in
uses touch to communicate
that region of the Earth between 23.5 degrees North and 60 degrees North (between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle) and between 23.5 degrees South and 60 degrees South (between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle).
Greegor, D. 1980. Diet of the Omnivorous Armadillos of Northwestern Argentina. Mammalia, 61: 331-334.
Grzimek, D. 1990. Grzimek's Encyclopedia of Mammals Volume 2. New York, NY: McGraw Hill.
Montgomery, G. 1985. Evolution and Ecology of Armadillos, Sloths, and Vermilinguas. London, England: Smithsonian Institution Press.
Nixon, J. 2000. "Armadillo Online" (On-line). Accessed November 14, 2001 at http://www.msu.edu/~nixonjos/armadillo/index.html?http://www.msu.edu/~nixonjos/armadillo/chaetophractus.html.
Nowak, R. 1999. Walker's Mammals of the World (Sixth Edition, Volume 1). Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins University Press.
Yensen, E., T. Tarifa, S. Anderson. 1994. New distributional records of some Bolivian mammals. Mammalia, 58 (3): 405-413.