Small Mammals By: Grant Hatch
American Porcupine • Appearance: The porcupine is a rodent. It has black to brownish-yellow fur and strong, short legs. It has hairless soles on its feet that help it climb trees. It has a round body, small ears and a small head. The most recognizable feature of the porcupine is its quills. A porcupine may have as many as 30,000 quills. • Habitat: The common porcupine lives in coniferous, deciduous and mixed forests. In the west, it can be found in scrubby areas. • Interactions: The common porcupine is a solitary animal, although it may den with other porcupines in the winter. • Symbiosis: parasites: include tapeworms and roundworms competition: porcupine competes with the beaver for resources. • Predators: Mountain Lions and Fishers • Diet: The common porcupine is an herbivore. It eats leaves, twigs and green plants like skunk cabbage and clover. In the winter, it may eat bark. It often climbs trees to find food. • Range: The common porcupine can be found in most of Canada and the western United States south to Mexico. In the eastern United States, it can be found in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York and New England. • Management Issues: Bounties, large poisoning efforts and unregulated killing have only recently been discontinued.
Dik-dik • Appearance: Dik-diks stand 30–40 cm at the shoulder and weigh 3–6 kg. They have an elongated snout and a soft coat that is grey or brownish above and white below. The hair on the crown forms an upright tuft that sometimes partially conceals the short, ringed horns of the male. • Population: estimated 511,000 individuals. • Habitat: Savannah and brush sometimes even in deeply forested areas, usually is between 12-15 acres. • Interactions: Dik-diks form monogamous pairs in fixed territories of low bush along dry, rocky stream beds. They mark their territory with dung deposits and with secretions from the preorbital gland. • Predators: Monitor lizards, eagles, pythons, smaller cats such as the caracal, as well as lions, cheetahs, hyenas, wild dogs, and jackals. • Diet: Dik-diks are herbivores, consuming foliage, shoots, fruit, and berries. Dik-diks consume sufficient amounts of water for hydration, making drinking unnecessary. • Symbiosis: competition: any other animal that eats the most nutritious part of the plant such as buds flowers etc. • Range: Southern and eastern Africa and Southeast Asia • Management Issues: Hunting and Habitat loss. No really pressing problems.
Appearance: The nine-banded armadillo is a medium sized animal, with a length of about 2.5 feet and weighing around 14 pounds. It is covered with an armor like shell from head to toe, except for underneath the belly, which is basically a thick skin covered with coarse hair Population: They are a threatened species. Habitat: Dense shady cover and limestone formations, from sea level to 3000 meters in elevation. Interactions: They are very aggressive especially when densely packed with others of the same species. The males will even box standing on their hind legs and hitting each other with their fore claws. Predators: Panthers, black bears, bobcats, alligators, dogs, and humans. Diet: Insects, spiders, and small amphibians; they prefer beetles and ants although they have been known to kill and eat young rabbits, and are also known to eat scraps of carrion. Symbiosis: Range: South-central and southeastern United States to Peru and Uruguay, Grenada in the Lesser Antilles, Trinidad and Tobago. Management Issues: Humans killing them for sport and also crossing roads in the mid-west/south are run over by passing cars. Armadillo
Works Cited • http://www.nhptv.org/NatureWorks/porcupine.htm. • http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Erethizon_dorsatum.html • http://www.ultimateungulate.com/Artiodactyla/Madoqua_kirkii.html • http://www.antelopetag.com/assets/docs/Antelope/SmallAntelopeDuiker/Guenthers_dik_dik08.pdf • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dik-dik • https://www.msu.edu/~nixonjos/armadillo/dasypus.html • http://bss.sfsu.edu/geog/bholzman/courses/fall99projects/armadillo.htm