Aww, don’t you want to snuggle with this little cutie? Well, if you saw him in the wild, you’d probably back away! Yes, porcupines are covered with sharp quills, but don’t worry. That’s how he stays safe from predators.
Baby porcupines are usually born during April or May. They are called “porcupettes”. When they are born they have soft quills, but with exposure to air, they grow stronger every day. These little baby porcupines are about ten inches long. Also, they have teeth and are ready to start eating and walking normally. These characteristics are important for these babies. Why? Because they nurse themselves by eating the vegetation just after they are born.
These little babies live with their mother during the summer. When the summer is over, they begin their independent life, but they aren’t fully grown until their third or fourth year.
Baby porcupines have the look of older porcupines. They have a rounded, large body and are slow animals. Their small head and ears, short legs and stubby tail are characteristic for these babies. Their front feet have four toes and their back feet have five. All toes have a strong, curved claw. This makes them good climbers. Their body is covered by dark brown fur. Finally, their teeth are large and orange. They are perfect for the porcupine because of their diet, which includes leaves, fruits and springtime buds. Oh and let’s not forget their thick, barbed quills! Each quill is tipped with microscopic barbs, or hooks. These barbs drive the quills deeper into the fresh of the predators. Ouch!
Even though they open their eyes right after they are born, they do not see well. But their strong senses of hearing and smell help them survive. They climb trees to protect themselves from predators. Interesting for these babies is that when they are scared, they use their defense mechanisms. They stop, stomp their feet, click their teeth, and hiss. That would scare away any predator!
The porcupines babies are most active at night. They continuously look after areas where they can establish dens, such as holes or burrows. They are active all the year. These animals can be found in North and South America and also Africa. Their habitat is forests, deserts, and grasslands.