Pecan is the newest member of the Animal Ambassador Program at Buttonwood Park Zoo. The male nine-banded armadillo just turned one year old on Thursday, April 22.

According to Buttonwood Park Zoo, guests may see him out with educators for animal encounters, special events, or school programs. The animal ambassadors at BPZOO are working ambassadors of their species and of their wild counterparts. They stimulate interest and appreciation, dispel myths and fears, reconnect visitors with the natural world and stir all those they encounter to action.

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“Many animals in the Zoo are non-releasable rehabilitated animals. In 2014, BPZOO created the ‘Animal Ambassador’ program to provide a safe haven for them while they serve as ‘Ambassadors’ of their species for public programs. The environmental education-based program introduces children and adults to wildlife through up-close exposure to animals. These Animal Ambassadors are an effective tool to teach children and adults about the risks that animals face, both in their natural habitats and from humans. In 2019 alone, there were over 26,000 participants in the program at Buttonwood Park Zoo.”

Pecan currently lives behind the scenes, but be sure to visit with the educators at one of the scheduled Keeper Chats for a chance to meet and learn about all the ambassador animals. You can find the schedule of Daily Keeper Chats HERE.

Personally, I'm looking forward to seeing this little guy in person. As of right now, this is the image that still pops into my head when I hear the word "armadillo."

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