Least concern

Henk is the park's coendous

Scientific name : Coendou prehensilis

Where do they live?

In old growth forests, humid mountains and prairies in Colombia, Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay at elevations below 1500 m.

Did you know?

The porcupine of the north and the porcupine the south
There are major differences between the South American porcupine (coendou or prehensile-tailed porcupine) and those in North America. The South American porcupine's spines are limited to the nape, shoulders and the top of the back. It also has a prehensile tail. Unlike the North American porcupine, it does not have long hair. Also, coendous are not adapted to moving around on the ground.

The Brazilian porcupine, also called coendous, is a nocturnal animal that spends 85% of its time in trees. It is characterized by its atypical wide nose. The color of its skin can vary from yellow-orange to brown-black.
Its 8-cm, tricolor spines are present only on its back. These sharp spines can penetrate the skin of predators and are difficult to remove.
Using its prehensile tail and long claws, it soars through its habitat feeding on fruit, leaves and buds. The coendous lives alone or in groups and boasts an elaborate communication system that uses visual, chemical and auditory cues.


30 to 60 cm.

Length of the tail

33-60 cm.


5 kg.

Life expectancy

9 years in the wild, 27 years in captivity.

Gestation period

200 days.

Birth Weight

415 g.

Human-Animal Connection

Coendous were first mentioned in 1799 by Bernard-Germain de Lacépède, a French naturalist and author.