Crested Porcupine – Карельский зоопарк

Crested Porcupine

Class: Mammals

Order: Rodents

Family: Hystricidae (Old World Porcupines)

Weight: 8 – 27 kg

Height: 60-90 cm

Body length: 90 cm

Coloration: The thick, stocky body is covered with densely set short and long quills. The quills alternate in color between dark or black-brown and white. The underside of the body is covered with dark brown fur. The porcupine’s snout is blunt and rounded, covered with dark hair.

Age of sexual maturity: Sexual maturity is reached at the age of 1 year

Gestation period: Approximately 113 days

Lifespan: Up to 20 years

Habitat range: The crested porcupine is found in Southern Europe (mainland Italy) and Africa.

Diet: The crested porcupine feeds on plant matter. In spring and summer, it eats green parts of plants, roots, bulbs, and tubers. In autumn, after cultivated plants have ripened, it primarily consumes their fruits, such as watermelons, melons, cucumbers, pumpkins, grapes, and alfalfa. In winter, it eats a lot of tree bark, gnawing on the lower parts of trees. Occasionally, to compensate for a lack of salt, it eats insects.

Did you know?

  • Crested porcupines always maintain cleanliness and order in their burrows. They create bedding from dry grass and change it for fresh bedding from time to time.
  • They have extremely sharp teeth and very strong jaws, capable of easily gnawing through steel wire.
  • The quills of porcupines are hollow inside, containing only air. This helps them stay afloat, making them excellent swimmers.