Wildlife on River Legacy Trails

You never know what you’ll see next on the nature trails surrounding River Legacy Living Science Center! And since we are Wild About Wildlife in the month of July, we wanted to share one of our most recent sightings – three armadillos digging in the dirt.

The nine-banded armadillo is native to the Americas and quite common in Texas. It is, in fact, the state small mammal. Typically solitary and nocturnal, these animals will sometimes wander during the day if their night-time foraging for insects has not filled them up.

Recently, several of our young students and employees spotted three of these armored creatures digging together.

Armadillos can be easily identified by their leathery, armor shell, which helps protect them from predators. Often, they will be digging, using their sharp claws. They are usually between 2 and 3.5 feet in length, including their tail.

One of the best things about walks down the nature trail is the chance to see beautiful animals. As always, however, safety is a priority, both for our guests and the animals themselves.

South American three-banded armadillos have the ability to roll into a ball when they are frightened. The nine-banded armadillo found in Texas, however, cannot do so. When it is frightened, it can jump 3 to 4 feet into the air! Although this is quite a sight, we value the security and well-being of the animals in our park. We certainly want them to stick around!

When observing an animal like the nine-banded armadillo along park trails, it is often best to admire from a distance. Remain as quiet as possible, as any fast movements or loud noises may cause the creature to flee quickly and hide deeper in the forest, away from the trail.

Our exhibits here at River Legacy Living Science Center are full of different animals all native to the area that can be found around our nature trails! Celebrate Wild About Wildlife Month this July with a visit to the Nature Center to learn more about the wonderful creatures we share our environment with.

Written by Josh Ripple, Summer Intern at River Legacy Living Science Center, and student at Stanford University.