Other Free Encyclopedias » Animal Life Resource » Mammals » Viscachas and Chinchillas: Chinchillidae - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Viscachas, Chinchillas And People, Conservation Status, Long-tailed Chinchilla (chinchilla Lanigera): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET

Viscachas and Chinchillas: Chinchillidae - Physical Characteristics

feet animals larger fur

Known for their luxuriously thick fur, these cuddly-looking, rabbit-like animals range in head-and-body length from 11.8 to 23.6 inches (30 to 60 centimeters) and can weigh from 1.1 to 19.8 pounds (0.5 to 9 kilograms). Females are usually larger than males. The animals' fur, which vary in color from brown to bluish gray to pearly white, have a uniform, soft underfur. The chinchillas and mountain viscacha have especially fine, silky fur, as well as special bristles on their back feet to groom themselves. As many as sixty hairs can grow out of one hair follicle. All the species have bushy tails. Viscachas are generally larger than chinchillas, while chinchillas have much larger ears and longer tails relative to their size. All of the species have broad, large heads, thick necks, and strong feet and rear legs. With its distinctive black-and-white facial pattern, the plains viscacha is unique among the family. Depending on their native environment, some of the animals are adapted to jumping, while others have evolved to burrow. The pads of their feet are hairless, and front feet are usually shorter than the back feet, which are long and bony. The four digits on their front feet are dexterous and useful in manipulating food. Their cheek teeth grow continuously and must be worn down regularly. The pupils of their eyes are cat-like, with vertical slits.

Viscachas and Chinchillas: Chinchillidae - Behavior And Reproduction [next]

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