Monday, September 28, 2015

Porcupines in a prickly situation

Last week while chasing elk around I ran into some very noisy porcupines as they are also in the rut.  They have the same gestation period as do elk, but I had never ran into them during this prickly situation.

As the two emerge from the dried bull rushes, the female turns and rubs noses with the male that is wailing just like a human baby crying.

She is a beautiful specimen with her long guard hair covering her lethal quills.

As she gets near me, she balances on her hind feet and tail and clicks her teeth, warning me to stay away.

The males quills are a mess as it looks like he has had to battle for the rights of the female.

Two other porcupines show up near the first two, but they are not so friendly with each other.

If you look closely you can see a quill stuck in the nose of this female.  No worry, porcupines are the only North American animal whose skin produces antibiotics protecting them from infection from miss-located quills.

Just another great day in the wilds of Idaho.


Cloudia said...

What a rich informative post!


Wilma said...

Your photos show how unexpectedly beautiful porcupines are. That female is really something.

Barb said...

Bill, you got great close-ups of the honeymooners! I didn't know they gestated in the fall. This summer, I was standing near my back steps gardening when I heard a swishing sound. A large porcupine came within inches of me and squeezed under the deck! That's a lot of porcupines you saw at one time!

Janie said...

Great post! You see the darnedest things. Now we know a little about how porcupines make love.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

This is great, I've have never seen porcupines in the wild.

Mary Cromer said...

WOW, what a great share, what interesting subjects!