Actual Size: 2.5 feet long; weighs 12-15 lbs.

Characteristics: About the size of an opossum or large house cat.

Habitat: Constructs burrows and may utilize abandoned burrows of other animals. Will sometimes burrow under the foundation of homes.


  • The only armadillo found in the United States.
  • Can jump 4 or 5 feet into the air when startled.
  • Known carriers of bacteria that cause leprosy, tapeworms, and salmonella.

Armadillos in Louisiana

There are 21 species of armadillo in the world, but the nine-banded armadillo is the only one found in the United States. Even with bony, armor-like plates covering their body, armadillos are easily frightened, and can jump four to five feet in the air when startled. Here in the Louisiana area, they can be a nuisance to homeowners for their digging and burrowing. They do this in a quest for food and shelter.

Armadillo Habitat

The nine-banded armadillo evolved in the warm, wet climate of South American rainforests. While it still enjoys those environs, armadillos are highly adaptable, and they can thrive in regions from scrublands to plains to the tropics. They don’t do well in intense cold or dry conditions. Armadillos make their own burrows or adopt the vacant burrow of another animal. 

Armadillo Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

Armadillos are powerful diggers. Their burrowing can wreak havoc on landscaping, foundations, and driveways. They eat mainly insects, and because they have little fat, easily lose heat and moisture. In their quest for food and shelter, armadillos destroy lawns, gardens, and even tree root systems. Armadillos are also known as a carrier of mycobacterium leprae, which causes leprosy. They can also carry tapeworms and salmonella in their feces. 

If you have an issue with armadillos on your property, we highly encourage you to contact a wildlife control company