Wildlife on Campus
Many of those students living in the Lords and Dorthy-Lords Center apartments may have seen a new neighbor running around campus. A nine-banded armadillo has made its home in the woods around the Southwestern Campus.
The armadillo is the Texas state mammal and about the size of a small dog. According to the Statemen’s report on armadillos, Texas lawmakers defended their choice of state mammal saying, “the armadillo is a hardy, pioneering creature that chose to begin migrating here at about the time that Texas became a state” and that “the armadillo possesses many remarkable and unique traits, some of which parallel the attributes that distinguish a true Texan, such as a deep respect and need for the land, the ability to change and adapt, and a fierce undying love for freedom.”
However cute and cuddly they might be, its best not to try and pet them as one in six armadillos in Texas can carry leprosy. Most humans are immune to the disease, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Our new campus resident should be no harm though as armadillos tend to avoid humans. Students who have had close encounters with the little guy have reported that he has run past people’s feet and made a strange purring noise akin to Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb.
The campus armadillo seems to spend most of his time between the Dorothy-Lords Center and the ceramic and sculpture studio rooting around in the brush looking for grubs. Armadillos migrated from Mexico to Texas about a century ago and love the climate here. Don’t worry about the weather getting colder in the winter, the armadillo will be just fine outside. So keep an eye out when you take walks around campus this fall but be sure to give our little guy lots of space. If you do spot him running around, take a photo and tag the Megaphone. This reporter certainly can’t get enough of Southwestern’s newest campus creature.