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Photo Information
Copyright: Jacqueline Schnepp (Noisette) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1714 W: 4 N: 2351] (7821)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-08-31
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon EOS 350D, 55-200mm f/4-5.6GED-IF AF-S DX VR Zoom N
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2010-09-06 11:17
Viewed: 3758
Points: 45
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Hello All

another shot from the "parc animalier de Sainte-Croix" it's not the best quality but it's an animal not often seen on TN and i was very impressed of his big size, in my childhood i have seen porcupine but in my memory they was smaller, perhaps they was smaller species

i was a few times in this park, but all the other times, the two pocupines was sleeping in their house and we can't see them while they are nocturnal animals, but this time this one was out for eat so i had the occasion to taken a few shots before he return in his house

Crested Porcupine

The crested porcupine (Hystrix cristata) is a species of rodent in the Hystricidae family. It is extant in mainland Italy, Sicily, North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.

Physical Attributes

Hystrix cristata is part of the family Hystricidae. The more common name for this species is the crested porcupine. The crested porcupine has an average head and body length of about 600-900 mm. Almost the entire body is covered with bristles which are either dark brown or black and rather coarse. This mammal is recognizable by the quills that run along the head, nape, and back that can be raised into a crest. Hence the name crested porcupine. There are also some sturdier quills which are about 350 mm in length and run along the sides and back half of the body. These sturdier quills are used, for the most part, for defense and are usually marked with light and dark bands which alternate, these are not firmly attached. This porcupine has a shorter tail which has rattle quills at the end. The rattle quills broaden at the terminal end and the broad portion is hollow with thin walls. When these quills are vibrated they produce a hiss-like rattle.

The front feet of the crested porcupine have four developed and clawed digits with a regressed thumb, the rear feet have five. The paws have naked and padded soles and have a plantigrade gait. The ears are external and both the eyes and ears are very small with long vibrissae on its head. The skull is specific in many ways, first the infraorbital foramen is greatly enlarged so that portions of the masseter extend through it and attach from the frontal side surface of the snout. Second the angular process is inflected on the lower jaw, thirdly the nasal cavity is enlarged. Prominent pockets create enlarged areas of attachment for chewing muscles. Collar bones are very much reduced, and there are one incisor, one premolar and three molars.

Food and digestion

The Crested porcupine is for the most part herbivorous, eating roots, bulbs, crops. But occasionally they do consume insects, small vertebrates and carrion. In order to ingest calcium and sharpen incisors they often gnaw on bones. These animals often travel long distances looking for food. They have high crowned teeth that grind plant cells which are digested in the stomach and the undigested fibers are retained in an enlarged appendix and anterior large intestine where they are broken down by microorganisms.


Most of what is known about reproduction in the crested porcupine comes from individuals in captivity. Usually female crested porcupines have one litter every year. One or two very well developed young are born in a chamber within the burrow that is usually lined with grass, but only after a 66 day gestation period, on average. The young weigh about 1000g at birth, which is about three percent of the mothers weight. They leave the den after one week. At this time the spines begin to harden. Crested porcupines reach adult weight at one to two years and are often sexually mature just before then.


The crested porcupine is a terrestrial mammal; they very seldom climb trees, but can swim. They are nocturnal and monogamous. The crested porcupine takes care of the young for a long time and small family groups consist of the adult pair and young of various ages. In defense, when disturbed they raise and fan their quills to make themselves look bigger. If continually bothered, the crested porcupine will stamp its feet, whirr the quills, and charge the disturber back end first trying to stab the enemy with the thicker, shorter quills. These attacks are known to have killed lions, leopards, hyenas, and even humans.


There are eight species in the genus Hystrix, only two of which are found outside of Asia. The crested porcupine is widespread in Africa and Italy. Although it is favored in many parts of its range as food, its conservation status is set at least concern.


crested porcupine is found in Italy, North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. In the Mediterranean it is known from mainland Italy and the island of Sicily, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia; there are also records from Libya, and along the Egyptian coast. It has been recorded from sea level to 2550 m in Moroccan Anti Atlas. It is sometimes asserted that the porcupine was introduced to Italy by the Romans, but fossil and sub fossil remains suggest it was possibly present in Europe in the Upper Pleistocene.


These are the countries from which the crested porcupine is known:
Native: Algeria; Angola; Benin; Burkina Faso; Cameroon; Chad; Côte d'Ivoire; Ecuador; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea-Bissau; Italy; Iraq; Israel; Jordan; Kenya; Liberia; Libyan Arab Jamahiriya; Mali; Mauritania; Morocco; Niger; Nigeria; Rwanda; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Somalia; Sudan; Tanzania, United Republic of; Togo; Tunisia; Uganda
Possibly extinct: Egypt

Presence uncertain: Central African Republic; Congo Map of Range from Red List

siggi, rousettus, Dis. Ac., boreocypriensis, haraprasan, CeltickRanger, bahadir, KOMSIS, rommel, maurydv, anel, oscarromulus, anemone, jusninasirun, Alex99 has marked this note useful
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To bahadir: Hello BahadirNoisette 1 09-08 14:49
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Critiques [Translate]

Ciao Jacqueline, great capture of lovely creature, wonderful details, beautiful natural colors and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

Bonsoir Jacqueline,
Voici un animal que l'on rencontre rarement !
Belle prise de vue, dans son allure naturelle

hello Jacqueline
bvery nice picture with good details and beautiful colours
greeting lou

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-09-06 13:07]

Hello Jaqueline,
Very beautiful picture of this Porcupine. Good pose and composition, sharp details and nice colours.Best regards Siggi

Ciao Jaqueline. Intersting rare capture even if too noised and not sharpened.


salut Jacqueline,
Porcupine is not common here, maybe first time. I am pleasured to see it as a mammalogist and from your post. you nicely captured it from fronto-lateral POV. sharp focus, composition with rocks very nice. thanks for sharing. best regards

Bonjour Jacqueline
Voici un animal que l'on rencontre rarement !
Comme d'habitude, c'est une photo avec d'excellents aspects techniques mais d'abord et avant tout, très éducative. Vous nous présentez des espèces que nous ne connaissons pas et c'est extrêmement intéressant.

Hello Jacqueline,

anothe good photo from this parc with good pov and dof.
Exellent details with fine colours.


Good Morning Jacqueline,

A fine capture of a Crested Porcupine, very sharp with good exposure to bring out the details.
TFS and have a nice day MF!


Hi Jacqueline,
A lovely capture of this beautiful porcupine. Excellent composition and good details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2010-09-07 13:13]

Salut Jacqueline,ta photo en origine devait etre pas parfaite,tu as fait du mieux pour augmenter la nettete' mais ca a cree' beaucoup de bruit..mais pas de problems,une capture si rare devait etre montree' meme....!!!Mes compliments et bonne nuit! Luciano

bonjour Jacqueline

une bonne photo de ce porc-epic prise avec le POV frontal,
avec un excellent focus netteté et détails du sujet, TFS


Hello again Jacqueline,
Excellent shot of this spiny beauty.
Details and colours are splendid.
TFS and regards,

  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2010-09-08 13:29]

Bonjuor Jacqueline,
Unusual ...
Good composition and details captured.Good informative notes.Thanks for sharing.
Have a good night,

Hellow Jacqueline,
You are so right, not seen on TN too often.I have only seen them on two occassions in the wild.As your notes say they are nocturnal and also rather shy.Nice upload, well done.

Hallo Jacqueline,
a beautiful portrait of this interesting species, very good POV and nice composition in a beautiful environment
Best regards

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2010-09-13 2:11]

Bonjour Jacqueline,
Tu as donc fait une visite au Parc animalier. Tu nous montres ici un animal que je trouve toujours intéressant pour un photographe, grâce sa forme spéciale et ses piquants. Tu as bien choisi ton angle de vue (le passage entre les rochers) Un peu de bruit sur l'image, mais ici cela ne me dérange pas vraiment.
Bonne semaine

Por desgracia ya no podemos ver esta interesante especie
por estas tierras ( no se si esta especie en concreto). Quedan algunos ejemplares solamente, aunque
en algunas zonas parece que la especie vuelve a resurgir, sin
duda por el control que se hace en el campo en algunas
labores culturales. Oportunidad en la captura y sin duda
un buen documento para la web.
Buena semana Jacqueline: Josep Ignasi.

It is so difficult to get a good image of this species. Have tried many times. We have a lot of them just outside the city limits. These fellows "SLEEP" long hours.
But, you have done a lovely job despite your ENORMOUS limitations; you found it AWAKE!!!
Very well framed, indeed. Well focused.
Liked it a lot.
Presented with taste.
Regards from Mario in Canada.

Hi Jacqueline. Great shot of this lovely cearture with nice composition.
thanks for sharing
Best regards

Hi Jacqueline.
Beautiful shot at this porcupine. The spiky details are so well captured and the rock and the habitat around it are pleasing in the frame. Nice exposure and good framing.
Thanks for sharing and kind regards.

  • Great 
  • valy67 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1727 W: 59 N: 3060] (9219)
  • [2011-01-18 13:43]

Salut !
C'est génial d'avoir de nouveau Internet !!! Ce porc-epic est très joli, j'adore sa "crête" d'épines et sa pose, les couleurs sont naturelles, la composition est très belle, et on ne voit pas que la photo a été prise dans un enclos ! Bravo !!!

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2011-02-23 8:45]

Hi Jacqueline.
I have never seen this cute animal in a wild and in Zoo. Your shot is very good and give a nice idea of all its features. Rock and a grass piece create a fine scenery for this animal. Especially I like exposure and reproduction of its colouration. My best regards and TFS.

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