Porcupine ( Latin Hystricidae , by the name of the genus Hystrix ) is a family of rodent order.
Crested porcupine - the most famous member of the family
|International scientific name|
Hystricidae fischer 1817
- 1 Appearance
- 2 Differences
- 3 Distribution
- 4 Behavior
- 5 Classification
- 6 See also
- 7 notes
The length of the body is from 38 to 90 cm. Weight is from 2-3 kg and reaches 27 kg. The back, sides and tail of porcupines are covered with needles. The hair color is brown, and black and white stripes alternate on the needles  .
Porcupines have the longest needles among all mammals . In evolutionary terms, needles are mutated hair . The “wool” of porcupines is made up of different types of hair: soft furry hair, stiffer, flat bristles, long and elastic bristles, as well as hard and long needles. Some of them reach a length of 40 cm and a diameter of 7 mm, are sharp and can cause inflammation if they are pricked.
The porcupine distribution area covers tropical and subtropical Asia and Africa . It remains unclear whether southern Europe is a natural part of their range, or whether they appeared in it as a result of human importation. Most porcupine species live in Southeast Asia. Porcupines also live in Europe , Africa , India , both Americas , Central Asia and Transcaucasia . Their natural habitat can be equally deserts , and savannas , and tropical forests .
Porcupines lived in the Urals about 100-130 thousand years ago during the Mikulinsky interglacial . In the Altai Mountains porcupines lived in the cave Terrible approx. 40 thousand years ago, in the cave of Robbery - approx. 30 thousand years ago during the Karginsky mezhstadial (warming). About 27 thousand years ago, with cooling, porcupines in Altai disappeared  .
Porcupines live on the earth. Some species dig underground tunnels, others hide in crevices of rocks or in burrows of other animals. Porcupine food is vegetable, and they go in search of food mainly at night.
Five genera belong to the porcupine family  :
- Genus Wormtail Porcupines ( Atherurus )
- African carp -tailed porcupine ( Atherurus africanus )
- Asian carp -tailed porcupine ( Atherurus macrourus )
- Genus Acanthion
- Malay Porcupine ( Acanthion brachyura )
- Porcupine Genus ( Hystrix )
- Malay Porcupine ( Hystrix brachyura )
- Crested porcupine ( Hystrix cristata )
- Indian Porcupine ( Hystrix indica )
- Javanese porcupine ( Hystrix javanica )
- Genus Indonesian porcupines ( Thecurus )
- Cruciform porcupine ( Thecurus crassispinis )
- Philippine porcupine ( Thecurus pumila )
- Sumatran porcupine ( Thecurus sumatrae )
- Genus Long-Tailed Porcupines ( Trichys )
- Long Tailed Porcupine ( Trichys fasciculata )
- Family: Hystricidae Burnett, 1830 = Porcupines
- Porcupines lived in the Altai Mountains 30-40 thousand years ago, scientists found out , 02.21.2017
- Russian names in the book. Complete Illustrated Encyclopedia. "Mammals" Prince. 2 = The New Encyclopedia of Mammals / Ed. D. MacDonald . - M .: Omega, 2007 .-- S. 454. - 3000 copies. - ISBN 978-5-465-01346-8 .