Tuesday, 4 May 2010
-Capybaras are sometimes kept as pets in the U.S. and Canada, but this is rare because they are very expensive.
-Their meat is considered a delicacy.
-An adult capybara will eat 6-8 pounds of grasses per day.
They can live about 4-8 years in the wild, and around 12 years if in captivity.
When vegetation is plentiful, they maintain and defend their territory.
During the dry season, capybaras may congregate in groups of up to 100.
In order to communicate with one another in these large groups, they use their sense of smell as well as a series of purrs, barks, whistles, clicks, squeals, and grunts.
If at the zoo... the capybara will eat rodent pellets with vitamins and minerals, along with fruits, vegetables, and hay.
-The capybara’s eyes, nostrils and ears are located near the top of the head.
-They are excellent divers and swimmers.
-If threatened by land predators, they retreat to the safety of water, and escape by either swimming away, hiding in floating vegetation, or staying submerged for several minutes.
-Like all other rodents, capybaras have two front teeth continuously grow throughout their life. They gnaw on tree trunks and chew grasses to wear down their teeth.
-These herbivores are very efficient grazers using their teeth to crop short grasses and other vegetation.
-The capybara diet is high in cellulose, which is hard to digest. In order to process the cellulose they have a large fermentation chamber called the cecum, but they are unable to absorb nutrients from the cecum. To absorb those nutrients, capybaras recycle their food by ingesting their feces.
The capybara is the largest living rodent. It is a semi-aquatic mammal of Central and South America. Capybaras are the only members of the family Hydrochoeridae.
They are related to the agouti, chinchillas, and copyhillas. However, they also resemble the cavy and guinea pig of the family Caviidae.
-The average head to body length of a capybara is 42-53 inches.
-Male capybaras weigh 77-141 pounds while the females weigh 81-146 pounds.
-Their coarse body hair varies in color from reddish-brown to gray with yellow- brown on the belly.
-Their front legs are shorter than their back legs.
-Capybaras have no tails.
-They do, however, have a slight webbing of the toes.
-They have a large, dark, oval scent gland on the top of their nose.