Save the Giant Armadillo

Target: Sarney Filho, Brazilian Minister of the Environment

Goal: Provide indigenous people with food other than the giant armadillo, a species vulnerable to extinction.

The giant armadillo is the largest armadillo alive today and is listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. They’re protected legally but still commonly hunted for food and captured for the illegal pet trade. Habitat loss is another factor in their decline in population, but steps are being taken to mitigate that. It’s estimated that the giant armadillo’s population has dropped by at least a third and possibly up to one half.

Not much is known about the giant armadillo’s behavior in the wild, as they haven’t been scientifically observed to any real extent. They seem to be long lived, at least up to about 16 years, and they have never bred in captivity. The young have never even been documented in the wild. There’s clearly a lot we don’t know about the giant armadillos and we won’t be able to find out much more if they all die out before they can be studied. Sign this petition to urge the Brazilian government to help indigenous populations find other sources of food and to provide it to them if necessary.


Dear Mr. Filho,

Brazil is known around the world for its biodiversity. One unique animal found in Brazil is the giant armadillo. Little is known about this species, but we do know it’s vulnerable to extinction. Currently, it’s illegal to hunt them but the indigenous people sometimes don’t have other options. Hunting is free and giant armadillos provide a lot of meat. They’re thought to only produce a single offspring at a time, and spend a while caring for them. Obviously, the rebound in population will take a while so it’s vital that action be taken sooner rather than later.

The giant armadillo is considered a habitat engineer since it was discovered that many smaller animals will use their burrows for shelter. The loss of the giant armadillo must therefore not be underestimated, since they affect so many other animals’ lives in ways that may not even be discovered yet. The armadillo population has declined in the last thirty years by at least 30 pefcent. Please take action to help provide indigenous people with alternatives to eating this rare armadillo.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: John Cummings

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  1. These awesome and unique creatures need protection so they won’t go extinct!

  2. Ginger Neimo says:

    To study these creatures it will mean that they will have to probably kill some. Either way animals and creatures are always at risk from humans.

    • Yes, the last thing they need is to be removed from their homes, studied – and probably abused – in some lab, and killed when they are finished with them. Better not to study them at all, or to just study them in their natural habitat.


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