The Sirian Monkdillo is a vaguely mammalian lifeform indigenous to the planet Sirius Prime. It is so named because it bears a superficial resemblance to the armadillo of Earth, and because the monks of the Krim-Hwa monastery are credited with discovering the creature. Given its harsh environment, the very fact of the Monkdillo's existence violates all generally accepted theories of biological science. Constant radiation on its home planet have caused the Monkdillo to evolve an armored carapace capable of withstanding theta radiation more effectively than the hull of a Federation Destroyer. As a result, many of the Federation's best minds have attempted to unlock the Monkdillo's secrets through intense, but have so far had little luck. The Monkdillos are sent from Sirius Prime to Sirius II where the Krim-Hwa monks shell them at processing plants after molting.
The riddle of the Monkdillo has led to its veneration by the Krim-Hwa as an expression of the power of their Supreme Being; as one postcard puts it, "The Mighty One shall bring forth life where all else perishes." Researchers of a less ecclesiastical bent have suggested that the creature is more likely an expression of some alien race's whimsy. Professor Taldeen of the University of Misfire has gone so far as to propose that the Monkdillo "looks like the product of a tavern wager between mad alien geneticists, each boasting that he could produce something which thrives in the most absurdly hostile environment."