Geographical Range Mexico, Central America
Habitat Forests, plantations
Scientific Name Sphiggurus mexicanus
Conservation Status Common

The Mexican hairy porcupine is an agile climber. It moves through the high trees in the forests of Mexico and Panama, using its tail to help it on hold on as it climbs. The rough, hard skin at the tip of its tail helps it grip the tree branches.

This porcupine sleeps during the day but is active at night. That’s when it searches the treetops for tasty leaves to eat. Sometimes it even snacks on lizards.

All 21 species of porcupines possess quills – stiff, sharp hairs that protect the animals against predators. But contrary to legend, porcupines can’t “throw” their quills at attackers. To get stuck with their quills, a predator would have to touch the porcupine’s body.