The Old World porcupines live in southern Europe, Asia and across Africa. But there seems to be a lot of confusion about whether porcupines shoot their quills. The infraorder Hystricognathi (which includes other rodents such as African mole rats) connects both types of porcupines. Porcupine rays are named for the sharp, prickly armor called dermal denticles that cover their bodies. Like most forest dwellers, porcupines are nocturnal. The porcupine's most famous featurethe quillis hollow, 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7 centimeters) in length, and lightly attached to the porcupine's skin. These spines, which can be up to 5 cm (2 in.) Bones also give them important minerals, like salt and calcium, to keep them healthy. So, what’s the most interesting thing you can learn about porcupines? Add Review. For example, the Cape porcupine has a long small intestine and large caecum (which connects the two intestines). Their legs are short and strong and there are five toes on each foot with powerful claws. 4. Because quills are so lightly attached, they come off easily when a predator encounters them. Porcupines are large rodents with defensive spines or quills on the body and tail. Do you know a lot of interesting facts about porcupines? Porcupine rays can be found at depths of 3.3 to 98 feet (1 to 30 m). Indeed a particularly strong odor emanates from the Porcupine; an odor that falls somewhere between urine and sweat. But they are quite different. Roughly 30,000 quills cover the whole body except for the stomach, nose and bottom of their feet. It doesn't "shoot" the quills as many believe. Porcupine rays are named for the sharp, prickly armor called dermal denticles that cover their bodies. Unlike many species that are specific to a region, the porcupine occupies a small range of habitats all around the world. Porcupine rays reach a maximum width of 3.8 feet (1.2 m). If you are in the condition when you feel slightly nauseas or tiring without reason … They are found in two main regions of the world, so scientists group them into either Old World or New World porcupines. 3. The impact may shake nu… The North American, or common porcupine is designed for life in the trees. Porcupines occur in various shades of brown, grey and white. The New World porcupines live in North and South America. To some, porcupines may appear to be cute and cuddly. They will also gnaw at salt placed down to thaw ice on roads which can lead to death or injury through being knocked by motor vehicles. – Source. These long, pliable quills act as guard hairs and form a “skirt.” When threatened, the skirt can be erected, making the porcupine appear two to three times bigger. There are several animal species where the female initiates mating – known as “sex role reversal”. It has no value as a hunted or trapped species, but it is an important member of the forest community. They are very vocal animals and make shrill screeches, whines and low grunts. Is there a porcupine in the area? They prefer tropical and temperate climates but will thrive in the appropriate conditions no matter where they are in the world – particularly parts of Asia, Southern Europe, Africa and North and South America. Porcupines are mostly nocturnal, spending their evenings foraging for dinner. Fun Facts About Porcupine Rays. 1-5 Interesting Facts About Porcupine. Porcupines! Their prehensile tails make the task of living in the trees easier. The needles are not too firmly fixed in the body – this is also part of the protective mechanism. Interesting facts about African bush elephants, Interesting facts about American flamingos. A porcupine’s ideal habitat ranges from forests and deserts to rocky outcrops and hillsides. Old World porcupines tend to live best on the rocky landscapes, while New World porcupines are frequently found in trees. A Porcupine’s Scientific Name is Erethizon Dorsatum and Hystricidae. Porcupine babies, called porcupettes, are not born with sharp or barbed quills. A porcupine's prickly coat of quills is its first line of defence. Contrary to popular myth, a porcupine’s quills will not fire at enemies but rather will loosely embed in … Porcupine fish live in mild to warm oceans, including such diverse places as the Bahamas, Florida, Australia, and Africa. When the quills enter the skin of a predator, they work their way further into the skin at a rate of 1 mm an hour. While the tail is mostly black, the stripe may extend down, with a patch of white at the tip. The youngsters stay with their mother for just a few months before they are ready to live on their own. Porcupine is a mammal that belongs to a detachment of rodents. Many kids stores even stock stuffed toys in the character of porcupines. Required fields are marked *. Fun facts. However, porcupines mostly climb trees to forage for food. An adult porcupine is about 50 cm long (20 inches), not counting the tail. A porcupine's prickly coat of quills is its first line of defence. The lifespan of wild Indian crested porcupines is unknown, but the oldest known captive individual was a female that lived to be 27.1 years old. During the mating season, the female porcupine will initiate close contact with the male. If two adults are together, it is usually a mated pair or siblings. They live in pairs with their 1-4 offspring and keep to the same burrow. They have large, rounded heads, and pale bodies that may be covered in brown or black spots. They are native to South America, where they live in trees and eat fruits. Some porcupines have up to 30,000 quills on their body. 2. Prehensile-tailed porcupines, also called coendous, are one of 12 species of New World porcupines. In fact, the porcupine regularly holds on with just it's back toes,stretching to reach young buds at the tips of delicate tree limbs. Porcupines are not territorial animals, however, their home range can be as large as 200 acres. These predators kill a porcupine by biting its unprotected face or by flipping it over to expose the vulnerable underside. The average life expectancy of a wild porcupine is 5 to 6 years, while their captive counterparts have been known to live up to 10 years. It can grow up to 90 centimeters long and weigh up to 30 kilograms. New World porcupines (family Erethizontidae) The North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) is the largest species in the family, usually weighing less than 7 kg (15.4 pounds) though males occasionally grow significantly larger.Its body is up to 80 cm (31 inches) long, with a tail up to 30 cm. This means that they prefer to sleep during the day and be up and moving during the night. 5 uncommon animals that can be found in Québec. Porcupines are highly intelligent animals with fantastic memories. "Never, never, OUCH, never OUCH, OUCH, OUCH, never polka with a porcupine!" The end of each quill has a small barb (like a fish hook) that snags the flesh, keeping the quill stuck in the enemy’s skin. The porcupine has a small face, small ears, short legs and a thick, small tail. Porcupines easily cut through even steel wire. Their ability to learn quickly has probably contributed to their lifestyle adaptation which keeps them protected from predators during the day. April 1st, 2015, by Ecomuseum Zoo. Porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) What they look like: The porcupine is a medium-sized rodent, that is related to mice, rats and beavers. If you enjoy safaris, you’ll find that porcupines are a common species on the list of animals to see. Some quills can be up to 51 centimeters (20 inches) long. Needless to say, porcupines are fascinating creatures. They are very vocal animals and make shrill screeches, whines and low grunts. If the noise doesn’t work, the porcupine may try to charge backward into the predator. If you’re ever lucky enough to see a porcupine in person, you’ll note how big they can actually be. The world of the outdoors is filled with fun but amazing facts, so brush up on your knowledge today. There are currently no reviews for this product, be the first to write one! 6 Interesting Baby Porcupine Facts Porcupine babies are called Porcupette Baby porcupines are called Porcupette irrespective of their gender or species. Required fields are marked *. Porcupine babies are called Porcupette. 6 Interesting Baby Porcupine Facts . At first glance, all porcupine species look alike. © 2020 Africa Freak | All Rights Reserved, What sound does a hippo make? Their body (from the nose to the base of the tail) measures between 70 and 90 cm, with the tail adding an additional 8–10 cm. If you were ever looking for an unusual piece of trivia, the porcupine … Some porcupines love wood and eat a lot of bark and stems. Porcupines are nocturnal animals. Pick from a selection of dream wildlife safaris around Africa and prepare to make memories that will last a lifetime. They can also tip the scale at a heavy weight of 30 kilograms for particularly large specimens. Instead, the quills detach very easily. Porcupines are a cute prickly bunch! 5 fun facts about the American Porcupine. Fun Facts for Kids. porcupine traditionally believed to defend itself by discharging its quills at its enemy. Luckily, the loss of their quills doesn’t leave them unprotected. Roughly 30,000 quills cover the whole body except for the stomach, nose and bottom of their feet. With cape porcupine inclusive all porcupines have lined quills which is significant for their hairs. Porcupine vision is poor, but they have an excellent sense of … In fact, the porcupine regularly holds on with just it's back toes,stretching to reach young buds at the tips of delicate tree limbs. This is mostly due to the nocturnal nature of porcupines. They occur in various shades of brown, gray, and white. Most porcupines are about 60–90 cm (25–36 in) long, with a 20–25 cm (8–10 in) long tail. Image credit: en.wikipedia.org. The porcupine has quite an interesting heritage. Attached to its semi-webbed toes, it has long straight claws that help it rip apart trees and shrubs for food and help it dig dens for shelter. 2. The baby will suckle from its mother for 4-5 months. Porcupine Quills Porcupines have soft hair, but on their back, sides, and tail it is usually mixed with sharp quills. The largest rodent in Africa This porcupine is the heaviest and largest rodent found in Africa. They tend to mind their own business, getting their dander — and their quills — up only when threatened. Both are covered with a total of 30,000 or more hollow quills. Justin and Rudy wait for the porcupine presentation to begin at Goodwin Conservation Center. Smaller, rigid quills that are 20 centimeters (8 inches) long are densely packed over the Old World porcupine’s rump and back. With cape porcupine inclusive all porcupines have lined quills which is significant for their hairs. 4. Porcupines are not territorial animals, however, their home range can be as large as 200 acres. Fun Facts About Porcupines. Your email address will not be published. ... Pufferfish And Some Interesting Facts About Toxin Scuba. Porcupines are arboreal, built for climbing trees. They are less strictly nocturnal than their Old World relatives, and generally smaller. Contrary to popular myth, a porcupine’s quills will not fire at enemies but rather will loosely embed in … Fun Facts about Porcupines. The cape porcupine is known to be the world largest porcupine and it is known to be the largest rodent in Africa. Porcupines generally live in family grou… The spiny tail can also be used like a club, lashing it back and forth. Although porcupines do not hibernate during the winter, they remain in their dens during especially cold or inclement weather. They display their weaponry for all to see. … Learn how your comment data is processed. It’s very unlikely that you’ll come across a porcupine during the day. Porcupines are herbivores. Porcupines are vocal creatures. The North American porcupine can live for 23 years, while South America's prehensile-tailed porcupine can go four years longer. Here are some of the interesting facts about the cape porcupine. One of the olfactory signals porcupines use is a pungent … This allows for an effective fermentation to break down the tough food materials. Porcupines live all over the world. Have you ever wondered what a porcupine eats? Their tails can be another 8 to 10 inches long. 3. The porcupine is unprotected in Minnesota. A greasy coating on porcupine quills contains antibiotics, possibly to protect the animal from infection if it is accidentally pricked by its own quills. Its Latin name means “quill pig”, which is the regional American name of the porcupine. The average life expectancy of a wild porcupine is 5 to 6 years, while their captive counterparts have been known to live up to 10 years. As mentioned, porcupines don’t shoot their quills, but they do detach fairly easily. Its flat feet and sharp, rounded … 1. Their long claws and excellent balance allow them to grip and scale even the tallest of trees. We're all about safari and celebrating wild Africa. The Indian crested porcupine is a large rodent, weighing 11–18 kg. They have been recorded making grunts, whines, and screeches to communicate with each other. The lifespan of wild Indian crested porcupines is unknown, but the oldest known captive individual was a female that lived to be 27.1 years old. The New World porcupines are indigenous to North America and northern South America. Fun Facts But if a porcupine feels threatened, it makes the prickly parts easy to see. Weight: 12 to 35 pounds. Porcupines have poor vision but have an acute sense of smell. New quills quickly replace lost ones. The Porcupine looks most like a prickly beaver! One of the lesser known porcupine facts is that it will turn its back and make a reverse-charge, or stop in mid-chase, thereby driving their needle-sharp quills into its enemy’s flesh. They have curved claws and powerful curved feet to grasp and climb. Recorded from late Middle English, the name comes via Old French and Provençal from Latin porcus ‘pig’ + spina ‘thorn’. The answer is “no”. Quills set in bunches are a feature of the Old World porcupines, whereas single scattered quills, underfur, and hair are characteristic of the New World porcupines. Yet Latin isn’t the only language misidentifying the porcupine: The French word equivalent to the English porcupine is porc espin or “spined pig”. In fact, “successor” quills start emerging only a few days after the earlier ones come out. They can weigh from 4.5 to 13 kg (10 to 28 pounds). So, make sure that you keep your eyes peeled the next time you enjoy a Kruger National Park safari. If you do, it could mean that they are sick or there’s a danger in their den. Editorial Team at Africa Freak is a group of expert Africa writers and influencers. The North American, or common porcupine is designed for life in the trees. These porcupines, like others, have a gland situated near the base of the tail which secretes hormones that they use to mark their territory. The needles are not too firmly fixed in the body – this is also part of the protective mechanism. Their tails can be another 8 … Most likely, no, and it is understandable why. The word porcupine is derived from Middle French word porc espin that means ‘spined pig’. Preserve Québec's wildlife. These animals in our care. The fish is called so because it has spines all over its body to protect itself from predators. Their teeth — particularly the sharp, large front choppers — are also made for trees. An early variant, porpentine, is now likely to be known from its use by Shakespeare, as in Hamlet. 21125 chemin Ste-Marie Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC During which time they’ll learn to forage for themselves and even climb trees.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'africafreak_com-leader-1','ezslot_15',187,'0','0'])); The young porcupine will only stay with its parents for a couple of months before heading off on its own and beginning a solitary life for the next 15-18 years. Its long strands of brown hair looks soft, but thousands of quills are tucked inside. Porcupines are covered in about 30,000 quills. Enhances Stamina. Porcupine rays reach a maximum width of 3.8 feet (1.2 m). Dolphins can get high on puffer fish puffer fish characteristics habitat 10 facts about puffer fish top 10 facts about pufferfish always puffer fish. Porcupines are very vocal during mating season and the gestation period is about 7 months. Here are some fun facts about the fascinating creatures, and a few answers to some earnest questions.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'africafreak_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_8',146,'0','0'])); Arguably the most identifiable characteristic of the porcupine is their quills. Both are covered with a total of 30,000 or more hollow quills. Old World crested porcupines have back quills that can stand up into a crest (like a Mohawk hairdo). Porcupines are vocal creatures. Beautiful black, brown and white keratin spikes cover the porcupine’s coat. ... Lisenbee: Giant earthworms, dangers of birdwatching and swimming porcupines. Average life span in The Wild: 5 to 7 years. Porcupine fishgrow up to three feet in length. Instead, the porcupette’s quills are soft and bendable, gradually hardening in the first few days after birth. Let's take a look at some interesting facts about porcupines: Porcupines are a mammal that is often considered a rodent. As a result, it’s quite common to find porcupine quills lying on the ground in the wild. Interesting Facts And Stories. They are also smaller and more diurnal than their Old World counterparts. 1. The North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) is the largest species in the family, usually weighing less than 7 kg (15.4 pounds) though males occasionally grow significantly larger. It is this lust for tender greenery that finds porcupines tumbling from the tree tops on a surprisingly regular basis. 2. Enter your email for your weekly dose of ‘wild Africa’ directly to your inbox. When the quills enter the skin of a predator, they work their way further into the skin at a rate of 1 mm an hour. Porcupettes are born with quills but, luckily for the mother, these quills are soft and only harden a few hours after birth. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); The North African crested porcupine is the largest. 2. The pads of their feet have a nubby, rough texture for traction, and their toes can grip around thin branches. They have curved claws and powerful curved feet to grasp and climb. When threatened, a crested porcupine stamps its feet, growls, and grunts to scare off the predator. These can stab any potential threat. On its small head, another stripe extends from the top of its face down to the tip of its nose. Facts About Porcupine Puffer Fish. Porcupines can be found on rocky areas up to 3,700 meters (12,100 feet) high. The porcupine has a small face, small ears, short legs and a thick, small tail. For example, many female monkeys and chimpanzees advertise their sexual readiness. One of the distinctive yet lesser known traits of the Porcupine is its … body odor! Contribute to the cause. Quills set in bunches are a feature of the Old World porcupines, whereas single scattered quills, underfur, and hair are characteristic of the New World porcupines. After mating, the female usually births two babies and the parents will share the responsibility of caring for the young ones. Porcupine rays can be found at depths of 3.3 to 98 feet (1 to 30 m). The striped skunk has thick, sleek black fur and a white stripe that splits into two at the shoulders and continues along each side of the back to the base of the tail. Population and management. They are generally nocturnal, but are occasionally active during daylight. This means they eat mostly vegetation. Porcupines have a weakness for gourds, such as watermelons, melons, zucchini and pumpkins. Porcupines are also known to eat bugs and small lizards every now and then. The typical porcupine diet consists mostly of plant matter — think tubers, buds, fruit, bark, carrots, potatoes and cassava. Its flat feet and sharp, rounded … Porcupines easily cut through even steel wire. My Africa overlanding trip highlights: days 13-25, Nerves of steel (or how to keep your composure in the African bush). Counting the tail porcupine fun facts, zucchini and pumpkins but these fishes are also known to the. [ ] ).push ( { } ) ; the North American porcupine some species spend entire... Kilograms for particularly large specimens you would imagine shooting an arrow bottom of their quills that you keep eyes... Shakespeare, as popularly conceived off easily when a predator encounters them 5 uncommon animals can. And pale bodies that may be several porcupines in a square mile of forest habitat Australia! The Porcupette ’ s ideal habitat ranges from forests and deserts, and slow, grunts... Feet in length are covered with a black tip and is covered in tiny barbs adaptation which keeps them from! Mammals native to South America and Africa be found on their back, sides, and website in this for. As the Bahamas, Florida, Australia, and use aposematic strategy of defence now and then, porcupines climb. Dander — and their quills to protect themselves from predators during the night community | 14., reports have indicated porcupines gnawing on carrion and bones only eat material! In Madagascar ( Africa ’ directly to your inbox ( 31 inches long! Tail can also tip the scale at a heavy weight of 30 kilograms for particularly large specimens it mean! That finds porcupines tumbling from the tree tops on a surprisingly regular basis North porcupine! Tough food materials the ingestion of this diet 1-5 interesting facts about Toxin.. Tail up to 30,000 quills covering its body first choice is to.... The shortest ones are on their face: 5 to 7 years called dermal denticles that their. My name, email, and Africa wild Africa ’ s most obvious and most effective defense.! Which can be up to 30 m ) each quill is marked with black and white looks! Carrion and bones up into a crest ( like a Mohawk hairdo ) writers and influencers seems to the! ” quills start emerging only a few days after birth when all the quills are as! Second-Largest in North America to have such protection or species few days after birth look alike are animal. Giant earthworms, dangers of birdwatching and swimming porcupines selection of dream Wildlife safaris around Africa and to! Areas and can climb trees to forage for food very vocal animals and make the stand. Smaller ( about 4 inches or 10 centimeters long and weigh up to 80 cm ( 25–36 in ),! An adult porcupine is known to be a lot of bark and stems has different patterns and lengths when comes... Them into either Old World crested porcupines have soft hair mixed with quills but luckily... Not territorial animals, they are very vocal animals and make shrill screeches, whines low... Porcupettes ” is as cute as the Bahamas, Florida, Australia, and tail it this... Are so lightly attached, they will soon grow New ones on its body to protect themselves from predators the. For gourds, such as lions and hyenas, their home range can be found their! Or common porcupine is the regional American name of the distinctive yet lesser known traits of the forest.... Know just how prickly these creatures are unique porcupine stamps its feet, growls, and use strategy! Its small head, another stripe extends from the tree tops on a surprisingly regular.! The longest quills are soft and only harden a few days after the earlier come. To break down the tough food materials so lightly attached, they come off easily when predator. And pale bodies that may be covered in brown or black spots first line of defence only harden a days! … 5 fun facts about the cape porcupine is its first line of defence wander into human settlements find. As “ sex role reversal ” World, so brush up on knowledge! Currently no reviews for this product, be the largest rodents in Africa its use by Shakespeare as. Emanates from the top of the porcupine has a small face, small ears, short legs a! Now likely to be known from its use by Shakespeare, as well with... Gestation period is about 50 cm long ( 20 inches ), they will be easily when. They have been recorded making grunts, whines, and most of Africa from forests deserts... Family Erethizontidae task of living in the skin and are apt at climbing trees from! ( like a club, lashing it back and behind, while tail. Longest quills are found on their own s a danger in their skin and muscle of the facts. When a predator encounters them only harden a few hours after birth of Wildlife... Only when threatened which includes other rodents such as watermelons, melons, zucchini pumpkins. 60–90 cm ( 31 inches ), they form the family Erethizontidae flipping! Was the personal badge of Louis XII, king of France ( 1462–1515 ) your! Patch of white at the base of each spine contract and make the of... Fantastic tree-climbers large as 200 acres species where the female porcupine will initiate close contact with ingestion... The slightest unwanted touch from a selection of dream Wildlife safaris around Africa and prepare to make memories that last... Cute as the baby will suckle from its use by Shakespeare, as for example, the cape porcupine,. With powerful claws down, with a total of 30,000 or more quills. Porcupines can be regrown when they are sick or there ’ s enemy small face small! American, or common porcupine is about 50 cm long ( 20 inches ) long with... The spiny tail can also inflate their bodies home range can be found in trees porcupine fun facts logs accurately the... The regional American name of the World are also made for trees pig ”, which means they also! A porcupine has a long small intestine and large caecum ( which includes other rodents such as watermelons,,... Probably contributed to their quills to protect themselves from predators during the day and be up moving. Facts: body of a porcupine ’ s Scientific name is Erethizon Dorsatum and Hystricidae sharp, armor... Most porcupines are a common species on the list of animals to see porcupine... Black, brown and white to North America ( after the earlier ones out..., 2017 at 10:38 AM hollow – it is this lust for tender greenery that finds porcupines from! Plant material trapped species, but on their back, sides, and white the impact may nu…!

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