Azara's Agouti

Name

Azara's Agouti

Scientific Name

Dasyprocta azarae

Characteristics

The Azara’s agouti is a species of rodent found in Paraguay,Brazil and Argentina. Their name comes from the Spanishnaturalist Félix de Azara.

The agouti has five toes on its front feet and three on the hindfeet. Unlike many other rodents, it walks on its toes and is notflat-footed. They are active during the day and in the wild theyare shy animals that will run and hide at the slightest hint of danger. Agoutis are known to be very good swimmers.

Pairs of agouti are usually monogamous (stay together forlife) and females give birth to 1 or 2 young, after a pregnancyof around 3 months. The young are born in a burrow and willstay with their mother until they can fend for themselves.

Diet

Azara’s agoutis have sharp teeth and their diet mainlyconsists of nuts, fruits and plant material. When they eat,they sit back on their hind legs and hold the food betweentheir front paws, like a squirrel.

Agoutis are known as jungle gardeners because they burynuts and seeds and then forget about them which allowsthem to grow. They play an important role in spreading seedsin the rainforest.

Size Fact

They can grow up to 50cms in length and weigh between 2-3kg.

Food Fact

They can open a brazil nut without using any tools!

Fun Fact

They make a cute little barking sound when scared.

IUCN Red list

IUCN Red list- data deficient. The population is believed to have gone locally extinct insome areas due to hunting.

Where do I live?

Azara's agoutis are native to South America and are foundin the rainforests and tropical dry forests of Argentina,Brazil and Paraguay.

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