“Pink Fairy Armadillo” The smallest known species of armadillo, approximately 13cm in length

The pink fairy armadillo (family chlamyphoridae) has another name called pichiciego. The pink fairy armadillo (scientific name Chlamyphorus truncatus) is found only in central Argentina.

It has a spatula-like tail that protrudes from its shell. They are only found in Argentina and primarily around Buenos Aires.

The pink fairy armadillo (scientific name chlamyphorus truncatus) leverages its front leg claws when they need to dig, has a fusiform body shape, and a carapace (a protective shell).

The armor shell is light pink to rose pink in color and has 24 bands, offering them protection from some predators. The pink fairy armadillo has 28 teeth.

The shell’s primary function is not protection but thermoregulation, which means they can control their body temperatures.

It is connected to the shell through a thin membrane along the spine and the tail is connected to the vertical plate of the shell.

They have a low basal metabolicrate which leads to a low body temperature and high thermal conductance.

The aerodynamic body shape, smoothdorsalshell, and sharp claws have made it possible for the pink fairy armadillo to adapt to the desert by burying itself in the sand completely and also navigate underground with ease.

They are known to live half of their lives underground to be safe from predators and only emerge during the night for food.

This also means that they are nocturnal creatures. Their size makes them ideal to be held in your hands.

The pink fairy armadillos look like small extant armadillos. They are no larger than 3.5-4.5 in and weigh around 0.25-0.28 lb.

They prefer to spend their time underground and only come up for food and that too at night.

They get their name due to the rose-pink-colored dorsal shell. It is the smallest species of armadillo that is known to the mankind.

The pink fairy armadillos can run up to 2 mph or 3.5 kph. They are known as sand swimmers for their ability to burrow and navigate underground.

Because of their body structure, they can dig faster and travel through the burrows faster too.

The pink fairy armadillos are known as fossorial generalist insectivores, their diet comprises of insects. Their diet features ants and larvae that are found underground.

They also eat worms, snails, and other insects as part of their diet. They may also eat plant leaves and roots if insects are not available.

The pink fairy armadillo habitat is most likely to be located in the xeric shrubland of central Argentina only.

This narrow range is the only habitat in which a pink fairy armadillo can survive. These varying temperatures are ideal for the pink fairy armadillo population to survive.

The pink fairy armadillo is very sensitive to the changes in the surroundings. A sudden change in the temperature or soil quality of the region can affect the pink fairy armadillo gravely.

They require compact sand with hiding places that are undisturbed and safe from predators.

Some pairing behavior observed in nine-banded armadillo is that the male tends to observe the female’s location and approaches it.

The male pink fairy armadillo then touches the dorsal area of the female which leads to the female tail wagging. If the female pink fairy armadillo wags her tail, then the male will take the next step of sniffing her.

The same behavior could be possible in pink fairy armadillo as the nine-banded armadillo are solitary creatures like them. The reproduction process of the pink fairy armadillo is also a mystery.

So far, we know that the males do not have any external testicles, and the females have two nipples. The pink fairy armadillo only has one offspring per year. This low rate of reproduction is observed in other armadillos, too.

In captivity, the pink fairy armadillo (order cingulata family chlamyphoridae) has a life span of four to six years, this has only been documented once.

It is a well known fact that they do not survive in captivity for very long. The pink fairy armadillo life span is around 5-10 years. It faces threats from various predators including domestic dogs and cats.

Would they make a good pet?It would not be advisable to have the pink fairy armadillos pets as it is a very sensitive creature who has adapted to only one kind of geographical condition.

And all attempts to have them in captivity have failed, as it dies after a few days in captivity. Until and unless more information is available about this animal, it woudn’t be a good idea to capture them.


Ref: kidadl, a-z-animals, wikipedia, animalia.bio, sciencefocus, NationalGeographicPic: wikipedia, animalia.bio, pinterest, songsaad, postjung, Next Step, Buzzfeed, Imgur, Wired, WillyEscudero