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Capybara

The capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) is the largest living rodent in the world. Also called chigüire, it is a member of the genus Hydrochoerus, of which the only other extant member is the lesser capybara (Hydrochoerus isthmius). Its close relatives include guinea pigs and rock cavies, and it is more distantly related to the agouti, the chinchilla, and the coypu. Native to South America, the capybara inhabits savannas and dense forests and lives near bodies of water. It is a highly social species and can be found in groups as large as 100 individuals, but usually lives in groups of 10–20 individuals. The capybara is not a threatened species but is hunted for its meat and hide and also for grease from its thick fatty skin which is used in the pharmaceutical trade.

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Capybaras are like giant guinea pigs!

Contributed by Crystal Hsieh

Who knew something this big could be a RODENT! A lot of people don't know about them. They're creepy to some people, and cute to others. What do you think?

Contributed by Alexis Traxinger

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