Have you ever wondered to yourself how many quills does a porcupine have? Well, it’s a lot. To be precise, the average porcupine has around 30,000 spikes on their back, sides and tail. But did you also know that the porcupine spikes are actually made from hair?
The porcupines spikes, otherwise known as quills are really hair. They can be both hollow and solid. Normally the quills will lay down flat on the animal, but when provoked to defend themselves, they will raise them up and plunge them into their attacker. The normal form of defence from a porcupine is to use their tail. They will strike their attacker with the tail, plunging dozens of spikes deep into the flesh. If their attacker gets too close, the spikes on their body can also be used.
Although not poisonous, it is still best to seek medical attention if you should happen to find yourself on the wrong side of one of the 30,000 porcupine quills. There are several reason you should seek medical attention. Firstly, some porcupines have barbed quills that will continue to work their way into the flesh and can be difficult to remove. The other reason is to clean the woulds and receive a course of antibiotics as the quills are not sterile, and can cause a serious infection to the site of the wound if not treated correctly. They can lead to rare cases of death.
Here’s some more interesting information about porcupines that you may not know.
- Porcupines are actually a kind of rodent.
- They can be found in North and South America, Asia, Africa and Europe.
- The porcupine quills have a sponge like filling that helps them float on water.
- They are herbivores, sometimes they have been known to cause significant damage to crops and trees.
- They live in trees and on the ground
- Porcupines are mainly nocturnal animals, sleeping in burrows , hollow logs and in trees.