France, Greece, Spain
Armadillo officinalis, or Spanish Pillbug, is a medium-sized isopod species from the Mediterranean region. The animals grow up to 2 cm in size. It takes approx. 9-12 months for the young animal to become an adult. This species is robust and easy to breed. A female can have several litters per year, each with up to 300 young woodlice. Like all woodlice, Armadillo officinalis can curl up into a closed ball in case of danger. They also make a humming sound!
The basic colour of Armadillo officinalis is matt blue-grey. The edges of the individual carapace segments are white.
It is possible to keep a group of Armadillo officinalis in containers with a capacity of 5l or more. It is important to know that this isopod species will not reproduce if there is not enough space. A mixture of soil, leaves, white rotten wood and lime is suitable as substrate. Moss, pieces of bark and leaves should be spread over this layer of substrate. On the one hand these things serve as shelter, on the other hand as food and to keep the humidity in the tank. The tank for Armadillo officinalis should always be kept moist. However, waterlogging should be avoided at all costs. A humidity level of 60-75 % will normally settle by itself with regular spraying. The temperature in the tank should be between 18 and 24°C. The animals need lime to build up their shell, which can be given in the form of cuttlefish, crushed eggshells or similar. The white rotten wood and the foliage in the substrate serve as food. In addition, vegetables, fruit, flowers and isopod food is readily accepted. Armadillo officinalis are crepuscular and nocturnal and usually stay hidden during the day. They are often found curled up in a ball on the substrate.