North-American Porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum)

The second largest rodent after the beaver. Dark-brown in color with white highlights. Slow moving and defends with exposing quills after warning with a strong odor. Lives in coniferous and mixed forested areas, feeding mostly twigs, roots and berries in summer and needles and bark in winter.

How To Identify

Color and shape. They don't flee if detected. Don't get too close unless you want to expose yourself to the odor and quills.

Where and When to Spot

My only observation of this species happened in a forested area near Tadoussac in May.

Common Names

Baumstachelschwein, Urson [de]
North-American Porcupine [en]
Puercoespín norteamericano, Ursón [es]
Porc-épic d'Amérique [fr]


Erethizon dorsatum

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