Thursday, January 17, 2008

Do They Look Like Fish To You?

Okay, so they ARE sitting in a pool of water in this picture and they do have slightly webbed feet, but do these Capybara look like fish to you? I didn't think so. However, in the 16th century, the Catholic church classified these animals as fish. I suppose when you're only allowed to eat fish during Lent, you'll be in a hurry to classify every semi-aquatic animal a fish! A cow or pig might not be arguable, but a large pork-tasting unclassified animal? Well, he's definitely a large fish then!

Capybara are the largest living rodents in the world. Related to guinea pigs, they can grow up to 4.3 ft long and 1.6 ft tall, weighing up to 150lbs (65kg). They are found in semi-aquatic environments in South America. They are gentle, social animals and will usually allow humans to pet and handfeed them. Hunted for their meat and skin, they are not an endangered species, but are suffering some decline in population due to the destruction of their wetland habitats. Capybara are often found in zoos and parks and may live up to 12 years in captivity.

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