Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Nocturnal Mud Snuffler

The moon was bright enough lately to take a night walk without falling off the face of the earth, so I took a little stroll. Under moonlight, the white sandy soil of my driveway fairly glows, so I kept the flashlight off. Maybe I could surprise some night critter if I traveled in a darkly quiet sort of way.

At the pond site, across the mud from me, I could hear slurpy movement, but not make out who it was. I was pretty sure who it would be though, so I got the camera read and turned on the flashlight.














It was the armadillo as I suspected. The photo above is flashlight only.














He was snuffling the mud at the puddle pond's edge searching for the tiny red earthworms that fill the black goo.














Judging from the rustling in the woods as I walked back to the house, there were at least two more of these animal accordians foraging nearby.

You may only have seen them in their more common roadkill tire- flattened frisbee form. They really are three dimensional ... honest.
Posted by Picasa

15 comments:

Laura said...

Wow, a LIVE one! (kidding).

I'll be monitoring my stats today, just to see if anyone from FDLE or the DEA comes snooping around. LOL!

Hick said...

We don't have them here, but I spent some time in West Texas (not in prison...but it felt like it) and I thought that there were no such things as live armadillos...only flat dead ones.

PS. If I was walking around in the dark and heard "snuffling" noises it would never occur to me to turn my flashlight on the noisemaker. I would be too busy screaming and running.

Gene Maudlin said...

But do they taste like chicken?

Deb said...

What a strange looking creature, I have never seen one three-dimensional or otherwise.

robin andrea said...

That is such a cool-looking creature. They look so prehistoric, or futuristic. I can't decide. Do their exterior plates shine? Does it look metallic?

Alivia said...

I would love to see an armadillo up close. Their weird cool

Floridacracker said...

Laura,
Coincidence, but as soon as I pulled out of the drive this morning, there was a dead dillo on the paved road.
I can't speak for the FDLE, but the DEA folks are nice :)

Hick,
They have the unfortunate habit of jumping straight up when frightened. Not a good idea when in front of a moving car.

Gene,
Pork. Hoover pigs you know.

Deb,
Want some?

Robin,
You should see a baby dillo, they are cute with a capital C. They look more scaley than metallic when you are close.

Alivia
Welcome to Pure Florida!
Weird cool is a perfect description of a dillo.

threecollie said...

Nocturnal accordians.....I really like that. Great photos and a turn of phrase as well. Always a good time to be had here at Pure Florida. Thanks

rm said...

Possum on the half-shell!

Floridacracker said...

ThreeCollie,
Thank you, such an odd critter brings out odd descriptors :)

RM,
LOL! I almost used that.

Wayne said...

Hey, that one looks just like ours! They're the oddest things.

Looks like you need some bobcats there :-)

Ericka said...

when my aunt and cousins still lived in texas, i visited for several days. they told me that if you scared one, they'll jump straight up in the air. i figured they were just screwing with me. one fine morning, very early, i saw one snuffling its way across their yard. i snuck out of the other side of the house and came creeping up to try to scare it. i was almost at my goal of tapping it on the tail when i was discovered by the neighbors and their curious dogs. *sigh* the dillo escaped while i was trying to explain myself. one day, i'll have another chance!

Floridacracker said...

Wayne,
Oh darn, I was gonna mail you a few.

Ericka,
They really do. As teenagers we used to bail out of the car when we saw one and chase it. Everytime we actually got close to one, it would leap straight up.

Wayne said...

FC - they also remind me of big rolly-pollys.

I don't know if I've just become more observant or if there really have appeared more holes in the ground and soil surface uprooted, but whether by coincidence or not, we do now have the armadillos. Two of them bivouac under our front deck.

Floridacracker said...

Wayne,
They leave ankle twisting divots all over my yard.