Follow by Email

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Porcupine in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua





The Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine (Sphiggurus mexicanus) is not a commonly seen animal. Although it is slow and not very small, it is retiring and blends in well. And some of its hairs transform into sharp spines as they age, providing them with a passive defense mechanism. Here we show photos taken of this animal in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua, some 100 meters from Estacion Biologica.

nature photography
Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine (Sphiggurus mexicanus) in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua. Photo by Pablo Somarriba.
 Although they are supposedly strictly nocturnal, this individual has ventured out in broad daylight on a tree on the main road in the reserve. We informed a park guard who remained near him for a few hours until the animal retreated into the forest. This species is nocturnal, solitary, and is thought to be strictly vegetarian. However, when we looked at these photos, we wondered whether this individual was feasting upon termites which are seen in a tunnel on the tree trunk, or perhaps on the tunnel itself which is made of semidigested plant matter.

nature tour Nicaragua
Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine (Sphiggurus mexicanus) in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua. Photo by Pablo Somarriba.
 It has a long prehensile tail which is evident in these pictures. Once somewhat common in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, a sighting today is remarkable. The porcupines are often killed by locals because dogs may bite them and be affected by their spines.

Apoyo Spanish School Nicaragua
Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine (Sphiggurus mexicanus) in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua. Photo by Pablo Somarriba.
 It was a special treat to see this animal, because they are not common and not out during the daytime Several students from the Laguna de Apoyo Spanish School got to see the animal, too!
wildlife photography
Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine (Sphiggurus mexicanus) in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, Nicaragua. Photo by Pablo Somarriba.
Please let us know if you see any special wildlife in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve. We are always interested.

Apoyo Spanish School Nicaragua


 
 

Post a Comment