Did you know? The general coat coloration for North American porcupines is black or deep brown. These slow-moving animals have sharp, needle-like quills protecting their body. The young ones are born with soft quills that take couple of hours to harden and they stay with their mothers for at least 6 months after birth. Family Life. Only beavers are larger. They usually appear dark brown to black, although some of the hairs and spines on the backs of these animals are yellow. North American porcupines are known for having numerous, thin quills. The Porcupine looks most like a prickly beaver! The penultimate chapter, in which the author rehabilitates an orphaned porcupine he names Musa, teaching her to climb trees and forage, show the scientific insights that come from such pursuits--such as the discovery of clay-eating in the porcupine diet--but also the pure joy and excitement of gaining a window into the world of the porcupine. In the spring/summer porcupines eat berries, seeds, grasses, leaves, roots, and stems. This creates a sodium-potassium imbalance. They are herbivores. Porcupines are the largest and heaviest of all African rodents. Porcupines are generally herbivorous, preferring to chow down on delicacies such as tree bark and roots but they are not too picky at all and some are not as innocent as you may think. The porcupine’s latin name, Erethizon dorsatum means “quill pig.” Porcupines are the second largest rodent in North America, with beavers as number one. The North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) has the most northerly range of all porcupines. The North American porcupine, Erethizon dorsatum, is a large rodent that is common in Utah. It often climbs trees to find food. The porcupine’s diet is most varied in the summer when it eats a variety of herbaceous vegetation including grasses, sedges, and the flowers, leaves, twigs, roots, buds, catkins and seeds of many other plants. Average weights for males are 5.5 kg (12 lb.) Coyotes are smaller than their relative the grey wolf, yet can cause quite a lot of damage to domestic households and will prey on chickens and other birds. One of the larger species in the family of New World porcupines, the North American porcupine is 86 cm long and it weighs up to 18 kg. Overall, porcupines cause less forest damage than fires, winds, disease, and insects. Diet. The North American porcupine is one of the largest rodents found in North America, coming second to the North America beaver. The head is roundish and rather domed, with a blunt muzzle and small eyes and ears. Their preferred food is the inner bark of hemlock and sugar maple trees, although they will dine on many other species. In the winter, it may eat bark. Circles, diet 1 (n Å 15); squares, diet 2 (n Å 10); triangles, diet 3 (n Å 6). The North American Porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum; hereafter porcupine; Fig. They eat things like stems, twigs, berries, roots, and other vegetation. North American Porcupines have a different diet to African Porcupines. The North American Porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum), a common New World porcupine, is second in size behind the beaver as one of the largest rodents in North America. Porcupines are often considered diet generalists, consuming a wide range of In the winter it may also eat bark. Scientific name: Erethizon dorsatum Average weight: 5.5 kg (male) 4.5 kg (female) Average height: 60 to 100 cm Average lifespan: 10 years or more. It is distributed throughout most of the timbered areas of North America. Some of them build dens on the ground. North American Porcupine ... A porcupine's natural diet consists of a variety of plant materials. Porcupines eat leaves, buds and twigs of plants and bushes, as well as nuts, fruit and the inner bark of trees. In winter, much of their diet consists of needles, twigs and small limbs of evergreens, especially hemlocks. The North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum), also known as the Canadian porcupine, is a large rodent in the New World porcupine family. The porcupine is one of the largest rodents in North America - only the beaver is larger. Another North American predator of the porcupine is the coyote, another versatile predator who can be found far and wide in the United States, constantly enlarging its territory. They live in forests, deserts, and grasslands in much of North America. Physiology. 1) is a wide-ranging herbivore occurring throughout much of North America, from Alaska to northern Mexico and from California to Maine (Woods 1973; Roze 2009). A Thorny Name – Though this should be unsurprising, their characteristic quills are also the base of their name. New World and Old World porcupines occupy a wide range of habitats. North American Porcupines live up to 18 … North American porcupines are some of the biggest rodents that come from North America, beaten out in size solely by beavers, according to the Woodland Park Zoo. It is mostly nocturnal, but sometimes forages for food in the day. The legs are short and sturdy, and each foot has five toes, all equipped with powerful claws. In spring and summer, when high protein foods are readily available, feeding rates are reduced and in the autumn, feeding rates increase in preparation for the winter food shortage. The North American Porcupine is best known for and made distinguishable by its spiny quills that cover its body. Weird Nature: An Owl That Uses Dung Tools By Matthew L. Miller Of “Pizzlies” and Goose … The word porcupine means “quill pig” in Latin; however, porcupines are large rodents and have no relation to pigs. In North American porcupines, this starts at late summer through early fall. North American porcupines are the second largest rodent in North America. North American Porcupines have a height of 12.6”-16.5” (32-42 cm), body length between 23.6”-35.4” (60-90 cm), and an overall weight in the range of 20-40 lb (9-18 kg). The North American Porcupine is a well-protected, plant-eating rodent that spends much of its time in trees, looking for food. The prehensile-tailed porcupine, a relatively small species, is approximately 30 cm long and its weight is only 900 gm. North American porcupines (Erethizon dorsatum) feast on a high-potassium, low-sodium diet of foliage, causing them to excrete high levels of sodium. This type of porcupine mainly lives in trees. nitrogen intake of the North American porcupine. Weight. Range: The porcupine occurs in North America in a wide range. When baby porcupines are born their quills are soft, but within an hour they harden. Porcupines live up to 20 years in captivity. The North American porcupine lives in coniferous, deciduous, and mixed forests. The beaver is the only rodent in North America that is larger than the North American porcupine. For majority of other porcupines, breeding occurs in fall, early winter. Diet. Habitat of the Porcupine . In the northern and eastern portions of its range it inhabits boreal forest communities. North American porcupines are sexually dimorphic, with males being larger than females. Porcupines are found throughout most of Alaska and Canada, in the northern part of the Great Lakes region, all throughout the west and northeast regions of the United States. This species is a generalist herbivore whose diet varies throughout the year in response to small changes in plant chemistry. Diet. However, the porcupine’s economic impact as a whole is equivocal, ranging from extensive in localized areas to negligible in others. The North American porcupine is an herbivore. Even with their formidable spiny defence the North American porcupine is preyed upon successfully by several predators including mountain lions and fishers. In the west, it is found in scrubby areas. During the winter they primarily eat evergreen needles and tree bark. What does the North American Porcupine eat? The African Porcupine does not climb so it forages mostly on the ground, and is mostly nocturnal. They weigh between 12 and 25 pounds. Only the North American porcupines has adapted to the cold. It eats leaves, twigs, and green plants like skunk cabbage and clover. The North American Porcupine is a specie from the Erethizon genus. Its Central and South American relatives can’t withstand the high variance in temperature tolerated by North American porcupines. The slow-moving North American porcupine is Canada's second-largest rodent (beavers are larger). They have long spiny barbed hairs or quills. Males: 7-21 lbs Females: 7-21 lbs Males are larger than females. Habitat: Porcupines occupy a variety of habitat types. They may actually eat bark in the winter and will climb trees in an effort to find food. North American Porcupine Scientific Name: Erethizon dorsatum Diet - Herbivore. This species is well known for its habit of feeding in winter primarily on the inner bark of boles, limbs, and branches, and on foliage of trees. Fast Facts: Porcupine. After the beaver the the North Amerincan porcupine is the second largest rodent in North America. Trees are an important component of porcupine habitat, as are the shrubs and herbaceous vegetation underneath. Here at Discovery Kingdom we give Quillson, our North American Porcupine, a diet of leafy greens, mixed produce and a specialized rodent chow. Related Articles . During the summer and spring they tend to eat less, as more protein rich foods are available. The word “porcupine” comes from the French porc d’espine, which means thorny pig. The North American Porcupine is an herbivore and sticks to a diet rich in herbs, leaves, twigs and green plants. If the animal girdles a tree – chews all the way around the trunk, interrupting the flow of water and nutrients – the tree may end up deformed or dead. They inhabit much of North America between the Arctic Ocean and northern Mexico. The North American porcupine, Erethizon dorsatum, is a large rodent found throughout much of the continent (Hall 1981). There are three species of porcupines designated as new world: the North American porcupine, the Brazilian porcupine, and the dwarf porcupine. They weigh between 5 and 14 kg, and are 600 to 900 mm long. It prefers coniferous forest and mixed forest areas, although it may also be found in wetlands, deserts, and shrub-land habitats. Porcupines have a stout, slow, lumbering form and a spiny coat. The North American porcupine is the only species that lives in the U.S. and Canada, and is the largest of all porcupines. Porcupines are generalists, eating a wide range of plant material depending upon season. A Porcupines Diet. A single animal may have 30,000 or more quills. This animal is usually found in coniferous and mixed forested areas in Canada, Alaska and much of the northern and western United States, although rare, sustainable, breeding populations of porcupines are known to exist in West Virginia and in smaller numbers in nearby regions of western Virginia. It’s well documented in the literature, and it’s based on porcupine physiology. Lifespan. Lifespan It is an herbivore and eats mainly twigs, leaves and other green plants. North American porcupines, Erethizon dorsatum, have the northern most range of all porcupines. Adult porcupines average 9–13 lbs. To answer the question more specifically would mean looking into individual species and their geographical location. Porcupine winter dens may be found in hollow trees and logs, small caves and rock piles. with the tail adding 14.5 cm (5.5 in). After about 210 days of gestation, female gives birth to 1-2 babies. Food and Feeding Behavior: The herbivorous porcupine specializes in a winter diet of the inner bark of trees which has earned it the wrath of forest managers. They can be found in mature forests, dwarfed pine thickets, or alder bushes. These New World porcupines usually weigh between 12 and 35 pounds, with full body lengths of between 25 and 36 inches. Observations of porcupines in recent years have become relatively uncommon and DFW is soliciting sightings from the public. The North American Porcupine is found throughout forested regions of the United States. se that determines endogenous urinary nitrogen but rather. Since porcupines live in so many different parts of North America, their diet depends on where they are living. These provide food and protection from predators. 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