Brazilian three-banded armadillo

Source:, photo by Ltshears
The mascot of the 2014 football world championship in Brazil is a Brazilian three-banded armadillo named Fuleco. And why is that information included in this newsletter? Because of the recent birth of a Brazilian three-banded armadillo in the Antwerp ZOO.
Three-banded armadillos can roll themselves into a ball. The armour on the tail, head and back fit together like a puzzle to defend the animal against enemy jaws or claws. The armour plates are made of keratin, like fingernails are. Three-banded armadillos sleep completely rolled up into a ball, safe and sound! These round shapes look just like footballs, and that’s why the armadillo became the World Cup mascot.

For the Antwerp ZOO, this is the first three-banded armadillo birth. The young animal was born in June, and at first its parents got to care for it in peace and quiet, behind the scenes. All is going well with the young armadillo, and visitors can now see it in the “Nocturama”. For the name of the female armadillo baby a vote could be cast in a poll on the ZOO web site. The choices were Oribella, Orfea, Olivia, Oona and Oriana, all South American names. It was decided by the visitors of the site that her name should be Oona.
Photo license: Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0