Other: Other Related Research
Midterm Check in
By Hector Medina (06/04/13 11:40:08)
Related animal: Chinchilla

I am yet to think of a solid idea for my final project, but I have some developing thoughts. I am thinking of creating something that showcases the interaction between the animals that I have met. Maybe create some comic inspired by Disneyís Wonder Pets show. I think it can work. So far Iíve met a bunny, guinea pig and a chinchilla, animals that I think could somehow get along. I recently met with the chinchilla, Sonic, so his experience is what is mostly present in my mind. I guess I can show some research on him and other chinchillas in the wild.
Chinchillas come from the Andes Mountains in South America. They live in the high altitude of Bolivia, Peru and Chile, yet there are farms that raise that breed them all over the world. There are two types of chinchillas. One has the body of a beaver, called the brevicaudata, and the other one which is most comment has a bunny shaped frame and is called the lanigera chinchilla. They have many predators, including birds, snakes and canines. They do have a defense mechanism which involves them spraying urine. They usually do it when being bitten on and a way to be released. Their diet consists of leaves, fruits, seeds and small insects. They live in groups called herds and their personality differs just like humans. They are rodents so their teeth never stop growing. They cannot sweat so they cannot live in temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Their body grew to not allow them to seat because since they have such a thick fur, they are prone to fungus with moisture. That is why they often take dust baths. They usually prefer to roll around in volcanic ash. Something interesting is that their fur colors include gray, white, black, beige, ebony, violet, sapphire and a mix of them as well. Itís sad that poachers use them for their fur. It takes up to 150 to make one single coat. If you are keeping one as a pet there are some things you should know. They need to be stimulated, this means chew toys, running/exercise, and a big enclosure with layers to it. They also need a cave within their enclosure to cool off or to simply hide and have privacy.
My friend has a chinchilla and she told me some things unique about him. His name is Sonic. She got him after an abusive owner so he is hind of shy and fidgety when held. He is very active but not personable to new people. She has taught him some tricks, so he is intelligent. She recognizes her and responds to her well. She treats him with small marshmallows and sometimes small pieces of licorice. Makes me want a chinchilla.

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