The largest rodent in South America is Capibar

The most large rodent living in the territory of South America includes Capibar. This is a semiwater grassy mammal, this species prefers to live near the coast of reservoirs. Capybara is the largest representative of the rodent family.


An adult can reach a length of 134 centimeters with a height of 50–64 centimeters, and the weight can be from 35 to 70 kilograms. The female individual of this type of rodent is much larger than males, and can reach a weight of up to 90 kilograms, and the male does not exceed 73 kilograms.

Capybara is very similar to a guinea pig. Her body is covered with rigid hair with brown color, the head of the animal has a large size with small ears and eyes. The limbs of the rodent are short, the length of the hind legs is larger than the front. The fingers on the legs are interconnected by membranes, the front paws have four fingers, and the back three. The tail is short.

The animal is sociable, lives in groups of 10–20 individuals, in arid time can be united in a large colony. At the head of the group stands a male, it differs in a large physique and surrounds itself with smaller sizes of subordinate males. There are several females with cubs. The rodent is very jealous of its habitat and can come into conflict with arriving guests.

Females give themselves completely to children. 2 or 3 offspring can be brought in a year. Pregnancy lasts 150 days, offspring can be from 2 to 8 cubs at a time. The cub weighs 1.5 kilograms and feeds on the mother’s milk for 4 months, at the same time eats grass for food. Puberty occurs upon achievement of 15 or 18 months. Life expectancy does not exceed 12 years.

Habitat and lifestyle

Kapibar spends most of his life in the water. Settled in tropical forests along the banks of water bodies in South, less often in North America. Are excellent swimmers, their eyes and nostrils are reliably protected from water. The animal is able to overcome long distances in the process of searching for food. At the first signs of the danger of Capybar can go under water, leaving only his nose on the surface. Often take mud baths to get rid of small parasites and clean the wool.

The main means of protection against predators are large incisors and claws. The animal is hunting: jaguars, wild dogs, anacondas, crocodiles. Large birds of prey can hunt small individuals.


This variety of mammals belongs to herbivores, they are looking for delicious herbs in coastal zones. Fruits, tubers, hay, aquatic vegetation can be used for food. Capybara is active in the daytime, but are able to lead a night lifestyle. In the heat they prefer to lie in water.

The ability of domestication

Capybara is very well tamed by a person and quickly dominates. The animal is moderately smart, has flexibility and friendliness. They get along normally with pets. Capable of studying, very clean. At home, in addition to grass, they eat grain, zucchini, melon for food. The owner of the pet needs to stock up on birch or willow branches so that the animal has the opportunity to grind its incisors.

To get Kapibar’s houses, a large pool is required, it is impossible to keep them in a cage, since this is a freedomloving animal.

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