Pairi Daiza Foundation


Crested porcupine

Le Porc-épic à crête – Pairi Daiza

Very formidable quills

The Asian crested porcupine is a member of the rodent family; its diet is therefore essentially vegetarian. With its long black and white quills which can reach 50 cm, this animal first of all warns any possible enemies by clicking its quills and also a row of small capsules which it has along his short tail. If this is not sufficient it raises the tips on its back in a threatening manner and bears down on the intruder, who would be well-advised not to get stabbed!

Because these long quills break off once stuck into the flesh of a predator and it is very difficult and painful to remove because of the tiny sharp hooks which make them so fearsome.

After a gestation period of two months, the female gives birth to between 2 and 4 offspring, as big as hamsters and who already have short spines which are however still soft. Fortunately for the mother who will have to nurse them and for the babies themselves in each other’s company!

In Pairi Daiza

Five crested porcupines in the Jardin des Mondes

You can see the family of crested porcupines in the Kingdom of Ganesha, not far from the wombats.

Le Porc-épic à crête – Pairi Daiza
Identification profile

A less threatened species

  • Name: Crested porcupine
  • Latin name: Hystrix indica
  • Origin: India, Arabia
  • IUCN status: Least concerned
  • Cites: --


These animals are like pets and are even a little “clingy”. And, because of their quills, you sometimes have to protect yourself when they try to rub against your legs...

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