The biggest rodent in the world makes great eating – and is super friendly. So you can decide whether it’s dinner or a pet. This video shows how they require special care but are great companions (mostly because they don’t seem to give a hoot about the world around them.) Ans as they can weigh up to 150lbs they are a great source of meat.
The capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) is the largest rodent in the world. Also called chigüire, it is a member of the genus Hydrochoerus, of which the only other extant member is the lesser capybara (Hydrochoerus isthmius).
Close relatives are guinea pigs and rock cavies, and it is more distantly related to the agouti, the chinchilla, and the coypu. Native to South America, the capybara inhabits savannas and dense forests and lives near bodies of water. It is a highly social species and can be found in groups as large as 100 individuals, but usually lives in groups of 10–20 individuals. The capybara is not a threatened species and is hunted for its meat and hide and also for a grease from its thick fatty skin which is used in the pharmaceutical trade.
If you look at videos of these critters you’ll see they like to mingle with other species. I like to think of them as the Canadians of the Animal Kingdom!