View Full Version : Armadillos

The Kill Dozer
November 30, 2011, 11:06 PM
Ok so my friend and I love shooting. Absolutely love it. And I have a pretty serious armadillo infestation on my property, and with cattle around they could break their legs by falling in their holes.. I am wanting to buy a .223. Is this too much overkill? He shoots a .17 and it does just fine, but I want something large enough I could shoot deer with also. I have a .22, but would like to get something a little larger.

November 30, 2011, 11:59 PM
Not overkill IMHO. Actually a vmax bullet would do a very good job on armadillos and you could stretch out a few shots to get ready for deer.

The Kill Dozer
December 1, 2011, 12:18 AM
The .22 does the trick most of the time, but they don't always drop. I'm a deer hunter, but also love plinking. Thought the .223 would be perfect

December 1, 2011, 12:29 AM
I have a .22, but would like to get something a little larger.

As good of an excuse to buy a new rifle as any. Now you're on the cheapshooter mind train!:D

December 1, 2011, 01:14 AM
.223 45gr bullets are good for small game and varmints.

You don't really care if you blow those little dinosaurs up do you? Not like you're going to throw them into the stew pot.

December 1, 2011, 01:35 AM
I'd shoot them with my SKS:D, but that's just me. I want to see them explode. They do dig a lot of holes!

Art Eatman
December 1, 2011, 10:01 AM
Be careful! The armadillo is the world's most vicious animal! You can often see them lying on their backs on a highway, waiting to grab a car!

December 1, 2011, 10:42 AM
When I was in the cattle business, I shot every armadillo that came across my path. I hated dragging the darn things off, so I learned that if I put a lung shot through them with a .22LR, they'd jump straight up in the air, then head for their hole at a dead run. Self-burying varmints. It don't get better than that.

December 1, 2011, 10:52 AM
Like Cheapshooter said,,,
You won't come up with a better "new rifle" excuse.

Even though they're varmints,,,
It's much more humane to kill them cleanly.

When I was eradicating them,,,
I used an H&R Handi-Rifle in .357 Magnum.


December 1, 2011, 11:17 AM
I have a question about armadillos.

I've never seen one (except for a road kill or two). So this is based on ZERO knowledgee of armadillos.

Last month we went to OK to visist wife's mother. She has a small farm in eastern OK and said she had hogs tearing up everything and wanted me to thin them out.

Turned out there were no fresh sign of hogs but anyway.

I always carry my 642 in my pocket, and when walking around MIL place looking for hog sign, my wife and MIL throw a fit, saying a 38 wont do in an Armadillo, because of the heavy shell. They insisted I take my Model 29, (which I planed on using for hogs).

Come on now, those suckers can't be that tuff. Am I right in thinking that a 38 will keep you from getting eatin by armadillo's?

I didn't see any armadillos though lots of sign.

Did thin out the turtles on her two ponds, that was fun. Those little heads are hard to see, plus the suckers are fast.

December 1, 2011, 11:51 AM
Armadillos are the Okie equivalent of a carnivorous Rhinoceros,,,
They will drag your leg into their hole and feast on you for a week. :eek:

But seriously, their shell isn't that thick,,,
Although they can deflect a .22 if it's an extreme angle glancing shot.

Your .38 will do the trick very nicely,,,
The model 29 will explode them.


P.S. Next time you're in OkieLand let me know,,,
If you aren't to far away we could meet up.

It would be pleasant to share a face to face with you.


Hog Buster
December 1, 2011, 11:52 AM
We’re loaded with the little varmints here. They tear up my garden every year, this year was especially bad. They ain’t hard to kill, anything from a .17HMR up will do the job. They are pretty tough however. Like Paw Paw if you hit them with a .22 they flip and flop for a few seconds and generally run off to die somewhere else.

Last year I grabbed my .375 Winchester to do one in. Hit dead center with a cast bullet and watched him start flipping. Put the rifle down and was amazed to see him stop flipping and run off into the woods with a hole as big as a golf ball thru his shell. Like I said they’re tough little varmints.

Any expanding bullet for any deer caliber rifle or pistol will generally disembowel them, which can leave a mess to clean up, if shot around the house.

When caught live they can pinch or cut your hand with the sections of their shell or tail. They can also scratch you with their long sharp claws. There's been some study done that they may be carriers of leprosy. Might be a good reason not to handle them at all.

December 1, 2011, 12:52 PM
In my younger days, I stepped in an Armadillo hole and cracked my privates. I found that mutha and proceeded to place 5 shots from my SBH, from 10 feet, using 225 Speer HPs @ 1500fps. He stopped jumping after the 5th shot. Tough SOBs.

December 1, 2011, 12:56 PM
yes, they do carry leprosy. The particular variant in the bacteria that cause Hansen's Disease (leprosy) has been found in humans, so there is, in fact, transmission going on from the dillos to people who handle them.

In .223, I'd pass on the ultra frangible varmint rounds, like the barnes varmint grenade, as probably any of them will vaporize on the shell and may not get in a real killing wound unless you bang them in the vitals. dunno. I feel pretty certain that any round that doesn't disintegrate in .223 will blow their inards out like a shaken coke.

IMO, I'm not liking .223 for deer. Your choice, though, since this is going to be your only rifle.

Hog Buster
December 1, 2011, 03:02 PM
As a kid I never saw armadillos here in south Louisiana, but the older I got the more I saw. They started migrating in from the west many years ago, along with the coyotes. For years they never were seen east of the Mississippi river, but the numbers grew here on the west bank. Gradually they found their way across the river and started showing up east of the Mississippi. Now they are everywhere. It’s not uncommon to have an infestation in the New Orleans suburbs and are occasionally seen in town.

Same for the coyotes. The first we saw, we thought were dogs. Then more and more. Crossing the Mississippi river slowed them down for a while too. Now they’ve gotten across and invading the New Orleans suburbs also.

Both being destructive pests, they’re outlaws, and around here are shot on sight.

Art Eatman
December 1, 2011, 07:57 PM
Armadillos go totally nutzoidal over earthworms. So, make a box of window-screen wire, put some worms in it and hang it a couple of feet off the ground. Sit back and shoot. :)

December 1, 2011, 08:14 PM
I've shot plenty...and I keep score..........current tally...212!!!

Shot them with a wide variety of guns, even a couple with my bow and field points, not recommended, they run off w/ your arrow!

A .22 will normally sail right through one, and that's what I have used on most of them. They are destructive pests on lawns, golf courses, etc.

I read long ago about the leprosy business and typically don't handle them.
By morning, the coyotes drag most of them off.

I peppered one with a load of #8 shot from a .410 at 20 yds or so (my normal snake/pest gun) and it ran off, so I and switched to the .22.

My big golden retriever "Bama" used to kill them outright, but alas, the old dog is gone now.

Hey, any excuse for a new rifle. If the neighborhood can stand the noise why not a .223???!?

Shoot them with your bow and they might run off with your arrow!

December 1, 2011, 08:35 PM
We used to shoot their heads off with .38s. We ate'm all the time then they picked up the leprosy bug. I haven't eaten one in about 30 years. I have fond memories of grilled Armadillo.

December 1, 2011, 09:06 PM
I believe that the first sighting I heard of here was in the area of 25 years ago. Get out on the roads during the season and the armadillos will outnumber every other kind of roadkill.

used to see a lot of skunks on the roads, not any more. Only occasionally see a raccoon. you could go through this area collecting dead possums at a penny a piece and buy microsoft next month. Armadillos, it's not uncommon to take a 5-10 mile trip and see a half dozen.

But, to be honest, they're a bit more durable than possums, so some of them may have been there for a month or two.

Hog Buster
December 1, 2011, 09:11 PM
The few that ate them here called them “Possum on the Half Shell”...... While us coonasses eat just about anything, I had to draw the line at armadillo.

December 1, 2011, 09:31 PM
I shot one with a .35 Remington. Seemed to be adequate. Shot another with a 16 gauge and 1 oz of 6s. Not so adequate. He got away.

The Kill Dozer
December 2, 2011, 12:13 AM
Well I live in OK, and there are a bunch around. I have a 7mm-08 for deer, along with numerous .22's and shotguns.. Normal Redneck stuff:D But 7mm-08 rounds are wayyy too expensive!! And Like you said.. A new gun is a New gun..;)

December 2, 2011, 12:41 AM
My dad used to eat em growin up so if your plannin to do the same, dont use anythin thats gonna make em disappear.

If you do wanna eat em, catch em every now n then. If you catch em by the tail just keep on holdin on, the crackin feelin is normal, its not their tail commin off or anything.

December 2, 2011, 02:26 AM
I was deer hunting many years ago with my SKS and it was near total darkness. I was about to head for the truch when an armadillo walked almost right up to where I was sitting. I couldnt resist and put a shot through the side of the armadillo and using a soft lead 7.62x39 bullet it was a sight to see. There was chunks of that poor little critter blown all over the place. I have shot them with just about every caliber I have ever owned. I have yet to take one out with one of my mosin nagants. That might be a mess for sure. Happy hunting.

December 2, 2011, 05:18 AM
i think an armadillo pelt hanging on a wall would be cool. how would you skin one, with a can opener?

December 2, 2011, 08:10 PM
Shucking the shell off is easy, just run your blade along the edge and it'll peel like an orange. The belly hide is as tough as anything I've ever skinned. I got to where I kept a stone handy to resharpen.

December 2, 2011, 08:30 PM
Its all fun and games until you run into the Giant Armadillo.

They've ripped car roofs off and flipped semis over.

December 2, 2011, 10:58 PM
The only thing a dilla is good for is eating yellow jackets,I seen what I thought was yellow jackets killing one but it was the other way around,So I let him get finished eating bugs then shot him.

December 3, 2011, 09:06 AM
What Paw Paw said. Hit 'em with a .22 and they run off to die. No muss no fuss.

December 4, 2011, 08:10 AM
"When I was in the cattle business, I shot every armadillo that came across my path. I hated dragging the darn things off, so I learned that if I put a lung shot through them with a .22LR, they'd jump straight up in the air, then head for their hole at a dead run. Self-burying varmints. It don't get better than that."

That is just a classic. Still chuckling over that description.

December 4, 2011, 09:33 PM
I was walking to a deer stand in Texas once and came upon an armadillo rooting around in the leaves. The ground and leaves were damp from rain, so I wasn't making any noise as I snuck up on him. They have good ears and good noses, but their eyesight is poor. Since I was going hunting, I didn't plan to shoot him (too much noise on a peaceful calm day), so I got right behind him and goosed him with the end of the rifle barrel. That dillo jumped about a foot in the air and came down looking all around. He saw my leg, but to him that was just a tree trunk. After he puzzled on whatever it might have been that goosed him, he went back to rooting in the leaves. I goosed him again and he jumped at least a foot in the air. When he landed he really had a strange look on his face, like maybe the area was haunted. He was quite disturbed by being goosed, so he slowly crept off, looking back often. He never made a sound during the whole episode. I know that I'd have at least squeaked if I was goosed by an invisible hand.

Major Dave (retired)
December 5, 2011, 07:09 PM
What do you mean,..."It's not like you are going to throw them into the stew pot"!

Armadillo are DELICIOUS!!! :D

December 5, 2011, 07:39 PM
There's a picture in my high school year book of one of the bio teachers. he had an armadillo shell that he had made into a hat. Can't remember right now, but I believe that the tail hung off of one side and the head down the other.

As you can tell, seeing uncle goober wearing his armadillo helmet in class kinda marks a person.

Given a choice, I'd rather have seen him wearing nothing but his spongebob thong and a ski mask than see him at his desk with that thing on his head.

The Kill Dozer
December 12, 2011, 12:55 AM
What does an armadillo taste like?? IMO They look so nasty under that shell I couln't imagine eating one. Like I said.. That's just me..

December 12, 2011, 02:02 AM
I have never eaten one. I know guys who do it all the time here though. It's a big deal around the quail unlimited hunts every year. When I was a driver the hunters would talk about an expensive banquet they were going to, a "wild game" dinner. The next day they would ask us if it is a normal thing to eat Possums, rattlesnake, dillos, coon, bush tails or woodpecker. I have eaten all but armadillo. Come to find out these expensive banquets were just the plantation farmers family making money off the poor saps.

I have shot many of them. They can be tricky (at least for me, never hunted at all), they hop around and just Sprint for no reason sometime. I use a canned 10/22 to keep my wife off my back. Never had a problem until one crawled up and died under the house. Three days of south Georgia heat let us know he was under there. She found him, bullet hole in his chest, she knew who did it. She now keeps that gun under her bed at night.....

I just got approved for a 5.56 can recently.... The fun continues!

The Kill Dozer
December 12, 2011, 08:31 PM
You gonna go AR, or bolt action? Getting new guns.. Makes you feel like a little kid at Christmas all over again:D

December 12, 2011, 10:10 PM
I love shooting armadillos, but almost made a big mistake this evening. After deer hunting, I pointed the Kubota RTV toward the mailbox that's about half a mile down the gravel road. Got the mail and started heading back. It was dark by then and I could see an armadillo in the headlights, running straight away from me down the road. I sped up, with rifle in lap, to catch him and do him harm. Got right in behind the dillo to where I could see him good and he magically became a skunk (and a big one). OooooKay....hit the brakes and back off. Happily, I guess he wasn't irritated by my motorized antics. Now I think I'll get the spotlight and go look in the yard. Maybe there's a dillo out there.

December 12, 2011, 10:45 PM
Their fun as all get out to shoot. Pretty much any kinda gun you can can kill them. I would suggest an AR-15, mini 14, ect. Something in .223 or small, fast caliber. You wanna see an explosion, hit one with a .270WSM. Then you wont have any mess to clean up. :D happy hunting, kill em all!

December 12, 2011, 11:07 PM
Try dillo on a half shell!!! Great.

The Kill Dozer
December 12, 2011, 11:07 PM
Me and my friend were out shooting armadillos; he had his savage .17 and I had my marlin 795 22lr! He shot one that, no lie, blew the shell and most of his back muscle close to his neck! The dang thing preceeded to hop around and try to find his hole -the best he could- for about 2 minutes! I've personally shot them in the midsection, guts hanging out, and still run off!! Tough little dudes. Are count right now is at about 32.. in 3 or 4 trips out;)

Big Yac
December 13, 2011, 12:17 AM
if you want to use it for deer too why not jump up just a little bit to a .243? Recoil is still very manageable and the little extra power cant hurt plus the .243 is a pretty flat shooting round.

December 14, 2011, 10:16 AM
My grandpa's neighbor decided that his .22 wouldn't be enough to get through the shell so he decided to use his 30-30. He only did that once before he decided it was more work to clean up all the pieces than to just use the .22

December 22, 2011, 01:42 AM
I suspect that a gun is not necessary for killing armadillos. I have never tried it but it seems like you could run one down and kill it with a club.

December 22, 2011, 08:45 AM
They can run a lot faster than you might think!

December 22, 2011, 11:57 AM
Armadillos carry leprosy...yup leprosy. Google it and you will see.
I shoot them all the time with my .45 cowboy action gun and its a blast

December 22, 2011, 12:13 PM
hate these little creatures. a few times per year they show up for a week or so and "airate" my yard for me. near break my knee or ankle every time. they showed up 3 days ago. thinking about staying up tonight to do some "plinking" when they arrive. unfortunatly we have been having a big bear visiting this week to and i dont want to deal with her if need be

December 22, 2011, 12:19 PM
My grandpa's neighbor decided that his .22 wouldn't be enough to get through the shell so he decided to use his 30-30. He only did that once before he decided it was more work to clean up all the pieces than to just use the .22

People either already know or soon find out that the .22 has it's uses. Not only is it a versatile cartridge, but there are some things, like killing rats, prairie dogs, and other smallish varmints, where larger hunting catridges can't be substituted.

January 14, 2012, 05:37 PM
Have you ever seen them taxidermy'd into a purse? Pretty cool.