Porcupine

(Hystrix africaeaustralis)

The porcupine is the largest African rodent, which has successfully adapted and has a wide habitat tolerance. It is disturbed throughout South Africa. The porcupine is armed with lethal quills which it rattles when confronted or alarmed. If this attempt fails it will attack in an odd sideways and backwards action, in attempt to impale their attacker. It should be noted that a porcupine does not shoot it’s quills. It’s principal enemies are the lion and the leopard, although they attack at their own peril.

The curious porcupine

Porcupine

The porcupine makes use of disused antbear holes, holes which it has dug itself, caves and rocky crevices; here it raises it’s young or lies up. They are most commonly found alone in pairs or in small groups. The porcupine is a nocturnal animal and a vegetarian. They are capable of doing great damage to crops. Porcupine are fond of bark from trees. They gnaw bones and ivory which accounts for the absence of these when finding a dead elephant in a remote area.  During walks on leopard Walk Lodge, porcupine quils are often found in and around a porcupine’s territory.