Crested Porcupine

crested porcupine
Crested Porcupine
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There are three species in the genus Hystrix, including H. indica, which derives its common name, crested porcupine, from its ability to form a crest by erecting the quills on the head, back, and nape.

It also possesses specialized rattle quills on its tail that it can agitate, making a startling whizzing sound that sometimes deters predators.


When that doesn't work, the porcupine turns around and rams the predator with its quills.

It shares its burrow with a family group composed of up to fifteen other individuals.

They forage primarily on fallen fruits, roots, tubers, and seasonal bulbs. They also gnaw on bones, sharpening their teeth and perhaps acquiring supplementary calcium for their diet.

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Animal Facts

Name: Crested Porcupine (Hystrix indica)

Family: Hystricidae (Old World Porcupines)


Range: Southwestern and south central Asia

Habitat: Dry rocky areas

Diet: Fruits, grains and roots

Head and Body Length: 24 to 35 inches (60 to 90 cm)

Tail Length: 3 to 7 inches (8 to 7 cm)

Tail Length: 3 to 7 inches (8 to 7 cm)

Life Cycle: Mating throughout year, depending on locale; gestation about 60 days, one or two young born

Description: Black fur with multiple layers of black-and-white spines; rounded head; long, stout whiskers; broad feet and hands with large claws; long, hollow, rattling quills on tail

Conservation Status: Lower Risk (Near Threatened)

Major Threat: Habitat loss; hunting

What Can I Do?: Visit WWF India for information on how you can help.