Baby giant armadillo’s first photo wins top award
The elusive and unknown giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus) is rarely caught by the lights of a camera, and never before has a baby giant armadillo been captured on film – until now. This unprecedented image has garnered recognition from the 2013 BBC Wildlife Magazine Camera Trap photo competition.
The photo, along with another winning image, is the result of the hard work of the Pantanal Giant Armadillo Project. Dr Arnaud Desbiez, the Regional Coordinator for Conservation & Research in Latin America for Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, and a leader of the project, said: “Collecting two awards in the BBC Wildlife camera-trap competition, one as a runner up and one a commendation, is an amazing accolade for the project. The worldwide competition actually had an incredible 850 entries from spots as far apart as Argentina, Bangladesh, Borneo and Hawaii, so it is particularly special to have received this recognition.
“We are particularly delighted as one of the main goals of the Pantanal Giant Armadillo Project is to raise awareness of this species. Many people in the Pantanal actually live their whole lives without seeing a giant armadillo and some even believe the creature is a myth. And did you know that due to its low population density, nocturnal activity and secretive nature, the giant armadillo could go locally extinct without anyone noticing? It is really vital we do everything we can to increase awareness and develop our understanding of this mysterious creature.”
A unique kind of contest, the four-year-old BBC Wildlife Magazine Camera-trap Photo of the Year competition actually awards the prize money to the winning conservation projects instead of individual photographers. Judges for the competition select winners by evaluating the contribution that each image makes to scientific knowledge.
Mongabay has covered the capture of this image and the work of the Pantanal Giant Armadillo Project in recent months.