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About the Rodents in the Art

Capybara

Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris

The largest living rodent! Capybaras are extremely social and live in large groups and have been known to communally raise young. They are also semiaquatic, able to hold their breath for 5 minutes and even sleep in the water.

Degu

Octodon degus

Degus are highly social small rodents from Chile. They nest together, and are known to nurse each other’s young. They have an extremely developed vocal range and are active during the day. Learn more about degus on odegus.com

European Hamster

Cricetus cricetus, aka Black-Bellied Hamster

These are the largest species of hamster, growing up to 14 inches long! They are recognized by their reddish fur and black bellies, but in Germany and neighboring countries there are populations that are almost entirely black (melanistic). They are not kept as pets due to their extremely aggressive behavior.

Ezo Flying Squirrel

Pteromys volans orii

The Ezo flying squirrel changes from dark brown to gray and white in the winter. They are found from Finland to Korea, but are most notable in Hokkaidō, Japan. In folklore, they are known as At-kamui or “the Divine prolific one”.

Gambian Pouched Rat

Cricetomys gambianus, aka African Giant Pouched Rat

The largest rat species, reaching up to 3 feet long (including tail). Due to their highly developed sense of smell, these rats are trained in captivity to help detect land mines! They are able to sniff out the mines without setting them off due to them being too light of weight to trigger them. Learn more about the HeroRATs!

Grasshopper Mouse

Onychomys

This little mouse is carnivorous! They commonly eat insects, spiders, centipedes, scorpions, and snakes. They also have a natural immunity to many of their prey’s venoms. These mice howl to mark their territory.

Harvest Mouse

Micromys minutus

This is the smallest species of mouse in Europe, measuring only 3 inches long. They have broad feet meant for climbing and a prehensile tail. This allows them to grip stems and leaves while leaving their front paws free.

J. monesi

Josephoartigasia monesi

This is the largest rodent to have ever existed! They lived in what is now Uruguay during the Ice Age. They are estimated to have been around the size of a bison, and had a bite force that rivals modern crocodilians! Their closest living relative is the pacarana.

Kangaroo Rat

Dipodomys ordii

These tiny rodents make appearances around the western United States. As their name suggests, they have long back legs like a kangaroo, allowing them to leap a distance of 7 feet!

Malabar Squirrel

Ratufa indica, aka Indian Giant Squirrel

One of the largest species of squirrel, and certainly the most colorful! Each subspecies has a slightly different coloration. These squirrels typically live alone, and can jump up to 20 feet between trees.

Maned Rat

Lophiomys imhausi, aka African Crested Rat

Despite looking like a porcupine, the hairs on this rat aren’t actually sharp. They are however poisonous! The maned rat is the only poisonous rodent, taking and storing toxins from the “poison arrow tree”.

Mexican Hairy Dwarf Porcupine

Coendou mexicanus, aka Mexican Tree Porcupine

This South American porcupine only grows to be 18 inches long with a 14 inch long tail. Their tail is prehensile, allowing them to climb trees easily. Their spines are bright yellow, but sometimes get obscured by their long fur.

Pacarana

Dinomys branickii

Pacaranas are large rodents of north-western South America. They are slow-moving and have chunkier bodies than most rodents.

They are the sole living member of the family Dinomyidae, and are related to the largest rodent to ever exist: J. monesi.

South African Springhare

Pedetes capensis

Springhares are not hares and resemble small kangaroos. Those long back legs allow them to leap more than 30 feet!

Despite these large back legs, springhares are avid burrowers. They sleep standing up in their burrows with their body bent down between their legs.

Southern Viscacha

Lagidium viscacia

Southern viscachas are relatives of chinchillas that live in the Andes mountains. Part of their days are spent sunbathing, grooming, and resting, so many photos of them show them as a very chill, sleepy animal.

Non-Rodents

American Pika

Ochotona princeps

Pikas are lagomorphs, related to rabbits and hares. They live in the mountains, usually around the tree lines in rocky terrain.

Due to warming temperatures, their population in the Rocky Mountains is being threatened. You can help keep track of their populations by reporting sightings of pikas to the Colorado Pika Project!