Armadillos in Kentucky? Sightings confirm small population in Bernheim Forest

By Amy Joseph Landon

Source: The Courier-Journal
August 22, 2023
By Rae Johnson

After possible sightings over the past several years, the nine-banded armadillo has been confirmed as the newest species found in Bernheim Forest.

A Bernheim staff member confirmed the creature was the 51st mammal in the area after one was found on the roadside, according to a release from the forest’s website.

Several factors have contributed to the armadillo’s expansion: overhunting of predators, climate change, a high reproductive rate and reports of relocation by humans. Before and during the 19th century, the animal was mostly found in Southern North America, Central America and South America. Now, however, they can be found in the Midwest and South, according to the release.

Some animals, though, such as bobcats, coyotes, rabbits and reptiles may use the burrows of armadillos as shelter, a study found. Some have expressed concern about the armadillos’ presence, but “little is known about how these creatures might impact the habitats at Bernheim,” the release stated.

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