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Patagonian Cavy

Dolichatis patagonum

Class: Mammalia Order: Rodentia Family: Caviidae

Size

Length: 27-30 in   Weight: 18-35 lbs

Lifespan

Lifespan (Wild): 10 years
Lifespan (Captivity): 14 years

Diet

Grasses and other vegetation

Habitat & Range

Lowland areas such as grasslands of Patagonia and Argentina

Interesting Facts

  • Patagonian cavies, also called maras, are large rodents that resemble rabbits and hares. They are found in Patagonia and Argentina living in arid grasslands.
  • Patagonian cavies mate for life and are monogamous. Males will urinate on females to “mark” them and keep other males away. Multiple pairs will sometimes share a communal den.
  • They are very fast runners and can reach up 35 mph. Their hind feet have three toes with hoof like claws, and their front feet have four clawed toes for digging.

Conservation Status

Near Threatened

Threats

The biggest threat to this species is loss of habitat from wetland drainage and pollution.