Capybara (Hydrochoerus Hydrochaeris)
Capybaras are native to South America and live in the savannas and dense forest. They are highly social animals and live in groups of about 20 but can be found in groups as big as 100. They speak in a language of sounds that include soft whimpers, clicks, purring, and barks. The Capybara is the largest living rodent, with its closest cousin being the Guinea Pig. They can weigh up to 175 lbs. Unlike most rodents, Capybaras have sweat glands in the hairy portions of their bodies. Capybaras are semi-aquatic animals and can spend up to five minutes under water. To escape predators, the Capybara will submerge itself in water and can even sleep with just its nose poking out the top of the water. They have a barrel shaped body with reddish-brown hair on the top and yellowish brown fur underneath. Capybaras are herbivores, grazing mostly on grasses and aquatic plants. They are extremely picky eaters. The name Capybara means "One who eats slender leaves" or "Master of Grasses." The Capybara is not in danger of going extinct and is often hunted for its meat, hide, grease, and fatty skin which can be used in pharmaceutical trade.