Guadalupe, the Lucky Armadillo | Comunidad Inti Wara Yassi (CIWY)

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Frank Ballard

01 November 2019

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Guadalupe, the Lucky Armadillo

Guadalupe, the Lucky Armadillo

Not long ago, the world watched in horror as terrible fires ravaged the Amazon, including in parts of Bolivia. Occurring between July and October 2019, the fires were considered one of the most serious ecological disasters of the past 10 years. Fires occurred in the tropical regions of the Chiquitano forest – considered an important resource of the planet, the Bolivian Amazon and the western Pantanal. Of the eight regions affected in Santa Cruz and Beni, the fires affected populations such as Roboré, Puerto Busch and San Ignacio de Velasco,

The fires also endangered municipal reserves including Tucabaca, Noel Kempff Mercado National Park (or Ñembi Guasu), territory of the uncontacted Ayoreo people. The event meant the loss of five million hectares of dry forest of the Chiquitanía, which in recent years had already suffered from being converted into agricultural production land, without the prior consultation with the local communities.

Guadalupe the armadillo enjoying a smoothie
Guadalupe the armadillo enjoying a smoothie

Guadalupe is one of the survivors of this catastrophe. She arrived with many injuries to Parque Ambue Ari. After spending a long period recovering in the veterinary clinic, we are delighted to see how much she has improved. Armadillos are listed as near threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature – IUCN.

Today, Guadalupe has made a home in the jungle, and her level of improvement can be seen in the number of tunnels she has made. These days we only see her every now and then, however it is evident she is healthy and eating very well. We are delighted that she is spending all of her time in her natural habitat, building her underground passageways throughout her territory.