If your windows aren’t painted shut, you might open them at night and listen for the tender sounds of porcupine coitus—stark, night-piercing shrieks that could be likened to the noises produced by a banshee banging a Velociraptor. The North American porcupine is found in New England, the upper Midwest and western United States and most of Canada. However, curious dogs might get a muzzle full of quills, which are painful and can become infected if not removed promptly. Once a male has won access to his ladyfriend, the right to mate is his to lose. They will be very aggressive because only the males that are strong and powerful are going to get a female to mate with.The male will dance for the female and then urinate on her to get her attention. Other noises include wails and shrieks. Because olfactory signaling is an imperfect science—who knows how long it’ll take for the guys to show up after a female releases her musk—guarding can begin several days before estrus. If you value our work, please disable your ad blocker. It was only around August to December that the testes descended into the scrotal sacs, just in time for screaming season. By joining Slate Plus you support our work and get exclusive content. But the screaming actually comes long before the love-making. I don't know if those are mating calls or if one wanted the other one to leave! Sounds include moans, grunts, coughs, wails, whines, shrieks, and tooth clicking. I bring it up only to note that the animal kingdom can be a dark place. These days, it’s difficult to roll out of bed without being hit in the face with a four-headed echidna penis. (Sounds like marriage.) Well, it’s not true. Two other formerly recognized Neotropical tree porcupine genera, Echinoprocta and Sphiggurus, have been subsumed into Coendou, since Sphiggurus was shown by genetic studies to be polyphyletic, while Echinoprocta … They are an enormous family of creatures, and although the Old World porcupines, and New World porcupines, are all from the same branch of the rodent family, they are actually not closely related. But porcupines? © Copyright Critter Control. Photo by John Pitcher/iStockphoto/Thinkstock. During the porcupine mating season, people may also hear a host of sounds including whining, moaning, and grunting. Porcupines whine, moan and grunt, and also engage in battle chatter, a strident sound made by clicking their teeth. During the porcupine mating season, people may also hear a host of sounds including whining, moaning, and grunting. The mating habits of … All contents © 2020 The Slate Group LLC. As the season progressed she sought and accepted more frequent tactile stimulation (presumably from the human investigators). A baby porcupine is called a porcupette. During the porcupine mating season, people may also hear a host of sounds including whining, moaning, and grunting. Unfortunately, being the second-largest rodent in North America, porcupines also fall out of trees quite a bit. Poop everywhere. Join Slate Plus to continue reading, and you’ll get unlimited access to all our work—and support Slate’s independent journalism. They are interested in mating for only about 8-12 hours the entire year. Porcupine Quills are dangerous to dogs because once they make contact with the skin, the quills can migrate further in and cause internal damage. There’s not a lot I can do to make this sound romantic, so I’ll just say it. Male porcupines are horny. And not rape-proof like the magical vaginas of Todd Akin’s fever dreams. That mess of quills is equally effective against its own kind. Finally, you know how you grew up thinking porcupines could launch their quills like projectiles, and you thought that seemed a little far-fetched but, you know, nature’s crazy, so you never really went looking for answers? Though the male can’t force the female to have sex with him, he does have one move that might help get her in the mood. Eventually, it all works out and the two enjoy about one to five minutes of delicate procreation. Up and Down arrows will open main level menus and toggle through sub tier links. First the the “hog” fight, next the raccoon scuffle, now the porcupine squeals…can’t wait to see/hear what’s next. Enter and space open menus and escape closes them as well. Even dolphins, animals of respected intelligence and the default subject of chick tattoos, gang rape. Females assist in this process before they come into estrus by lacing the air with a pungent perfume—a come-hither scent created by a combination of vaginal mucous and urine that not even Brad Pitt could make appealing. “It’s more like an ejaculation, and it’s definitely the strangest part of porcupine courting.”, We don’t know for sure what the pissing is all about—R. Left and right arrows move across top level links and expand / close menus in sub levels. Except for mamas raising babies—which are known adorably as porcupettes—porcupines are mostly solitary creatures. (He also has a delightful new book available—guess what it’s about!) My friends, porcupines are rape-proof. When property owners hear porcupine noises or notice other signs of their presence, the quickest route to safe exclusion and removal is contacting Critter Control. It may assist in reproduction by trapping semen within or dissipating to release more spermatozoa. The screaming porcupine is a female letting an ardent male know she’s not in the mood. (Return to the corrected sentence.). 2. In such a situation, the porcupine will clack its teeth before straightening its quills in a defensive posture and swatting its tail. I know what you’re thinking—quills. These fights occur because the preestrus female climbs a tree and vocalizes loudly, making a sound similar to that of a cat. Porcupines mate in late summer and early fall. You can hear how the one at top screams louder every time the one at the bottom moves (you can hear branches cracking) If two males are fighting over a female, agitated howls may be audible. Types Of Porcupine Noises. Watch next video Hilarious GPS prank. Critter Control Logo. Less well known is the fact that they also use noises to warn away predators. If two males are fighting over a female, agitated howls may be audible. Porcupines cannot “shoot” their quills, but the quills come out quite easily on … (Yes, porcupines climb mother-cussing trees! Some of the quills bore signs of bite marks, showing that porcupines are practiced in removing rivals’ quills from their own skin after such skirmishes. I have heard porcupine sounds described as shrieks, but this was a more rhythmic, conversational tone." At least their quills are coated with antibacterial fatty acids that seem to protect against infection after self-impalement.). Porcupines’ back, sides, and tail are covered with thousands of stiff, needle-like, finely barbed hairs (quills) for defense. Some porcupine sounds at night may be similar to a bird's caw. Scientists call it the Whitten Effect. Porcupines mate in a very bizarre way. Related Videos. I mean rape-proof like the anti-rape condom. Porcupines are very vocal during mating season. In fact, the porcupine is so well-respected, it wanders the forest day or night without much hurry or fear. Using the same term with animals is problematic, but walk with me. Which means you need not run for the hills if you see one. Community Radio WERU FM P.O. Uldis Roze knows these battles by their aftermath: “a storm of loose quills.” Roze has 35 years of experience working with these creatures and is widely regarded as the Porcupine King. The waiting game is now on. People are excited about animals and science and bizarre penises—well, penises are an easy sell—but it’s also sort of weird that we may know more about yeti crabs, honey badgers, and blue dragon sea slugs than we do about some of the beasties in our own backyards. They first begin their ludicrous lovemaking with some nose rubbing. You can cancel anytime. Running and fighting tend to be pretty unromantic. The male porcupine’s glans (tip of the penis) is covered in hundreds of conical, 1-millimeter spikes made of, ahem, “horny material.” Two other, larger spines (2 mm) hide out in pocket on the glans, called the sacculus urethralis, and come into view only when the penis erects. We have only seen a porcupine once, in a provincial park in Nova Scotia (Kejemakujik) more than 20 years ago. Thus instead of force, the male porcupine must use persuasion. These unions can take place in the tree tops or on the forest floor, and are often accompanied by bizarre sounds. In humans, we call this rape. Additionally, it helps prevent other males from having a chance at fertilization. The male porcupine begins the mating process with a high-pressure stream of urine that … Alas, science has yet to reveal to us whether any of these tiny tines induce orgasm, direct semen, help the penis stay inserted, or simply look badass, but we can at least agree they give whole new meaning to the euphemism “prick.”. During mating season, both males and females make these sounds, along with wails, shrieks, and siren-like screaming. The porcupine is another one of these species. Slate relies on advertising to support our journalism. We are living in the Golden Age of Internet Animalia. 4. Humans are most likely to hear porcupine noises if the animal feels threatened. It’s true, the North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) is equipped with something like 30,000 needle-sharp back daggers, and many of them stand between the female’s hoo-ha and the next generation of prickly progeny. 3. Water striders coerce sex by threatening to call in predators if the females don’t submit. Porcupines have a reputation as tough customers because of their sharp quills. This mating call attracts males, which then fight brutally with each other. This mass of starchy, bluish-white material is called a vaginal plug or mating plug. Porcupines whine, moan and grunt, and also engage in battle chatter, a strident sound made by clicking their teeth. In July/August, as the mating season approached, the female porcupine would often rub her genitals on structures such as food and water dishes, sticks, and the cage wire. During the mating season, the female porcupine will initiate close contact with the male. Male bedbugs stab the females with their penis and then leave it there. "It´s not unusual to see a winning, mating male with a hundred or so quills of rival males´ tails stuck in his face," says Sweitzer. Hardly an hour passes without the discovery of some ridiculous-looking new species, bizarre adaptation, or horrendous sex organ. Seals rape. – Source. Rodents make up about 40% of all the mammal species on Earth. – Source. And that’s great! If she’s not ready, she might try to bite him, tail-swipe him, scream in his general direction, or simply shake the urine off and run away. Porcupine sex is not the exercise in S&M you might imagine but it … If the female accepts the nose rubbing and, after the initial nose rubbing test, the female is still keen on the male, the male will then stand on its hind legs and the female allows him to urinate all over her body (kinky). This rescued porcupine is named Kemosabe and he’s quite the chatterbox! Get too close and you’ll snag 500 quills engineered to embed themselves deeper and deeper into flesh. Correction, Dec. 3, 2012: This article originally misidentified the suborder of rodent to which mice and rats belong. If rape is nonconsensual sex, then ducks rape. Male porcupines may give vent to the occasional scream as well, but it’s from frustration, not pain: the female is only sexually receptive 8-12 hours per year. Poop. Every sound in our library is an authentic professional recording and labeled correctly. This means the fellas need to come from distant territories to find, win, woo, and mount her if they are to pass on their genes. All of this contributes to a remarkable 90 percent success rate in female porcupine reproduction. Here’s the thing about female porcupines. Males often fight over females. Few animals are clever enough to successfully hunt porcupines, though mountain lions, fishers, and Chevy Impalas have the most success. Porcupines make a variety of vocalizations, some which can be heard at considerable distance. The lovers may go through this process several times throughout the course of an hour until one of them climbs up on a branch and declares “Enough!”—though to our unrefined human ears, this just sounds like yet more screaming. Some porcupine sounds at night may be similar to a bird’s caw. As my years go by, I so appreciate your nature sounds … Slate is published by The Slate Group, a Graham Holdings Company. And you'll never see this message again. Porcupine mating involves short periods of fertility, urinary ejaculation and vicious battles between males. And when the female is ready to mate, she has just an 8- to 12-hour window of fertility to work with. People may notice several porcupine sounds when the animals are nearby. You see, the biggest holdup to porcupine reproduction is location. Even more amazing, Roze has witnessed in the tree canopy a male firing off salvos from one branch at a female on another. I had two porcupines in my backyard, one was at the top of the tree and the other was at the base. One of the olfactory signals porcupines … If the strategy works and the female is ready, she’ll lift her tail and allow the male to mount. Very, very horny. Some porcupine sounds at night may be similar to a bird's caw. Though we don’t know whether it’s lucky for the lady porcupine. Even though they are physically slow, they are intelligent and able to learn … Tab will move on to the next part of the site rather than go through menu items. None of this is to minimize the crime of rape in humans. The males can also vocalize to keep other males out of a given area. The Internet calls it a golden shower.*. It's no surprise then that they have a hard time finding love. All rights reserved. The sounds listed below represent the world's largest studio-grade sound library of North American animals. During mating season, both males and females make these sounds, along with wails, shrieks, and siren … Many of the sounds in our library are the only known recordings of that animal. You’ve run out of free articles. Late summer and early fall are the mating times for the Porcupine. If anyone's ever owned a rat, hamster, or guinea pig (porcupine's closest relative), you know that they leave pellets of crap everywhere in their enclosure. They either scurry away, looking for the nearest tree, or they stick out their quills and unleash hell. Box 170 1186 Acadia Highway East Orland, Maine 04431 89.9 Blue Hill • 99.9 Bangor Porcupines generally have two methods for handling relationships: withdrawal and attack. A porcupine’s main defense against predators consists of keeping its backside to a predator. After listening to porcupines battle one fall night, Roze returned the next day and collected 1,474 quills belonging to three separate males. In the course of Roze’s research, he noted that most of the adult males he studied kept their testicles within the abdomen for the much of the year. Navigate to homepage. They make a great deal of vocalizations to draw a mate to them. During mating season, females communicate through high-pitched sounds; a threatened porcupine may chatter its teeth to ward off any looming threats; males use fierce noises while competing during mating … All rights reserved. Did I mention porcupine testes seem to be of the Go-Go Gadget variety? During this short interval of time, usually in November-December, the female will accept the golden shower from the male. They will part afte… For a male porcupine intent on winning his mate, success requires … In forests across Canada and the United States, a peculiar mating ritual takes place each fall. Now I have a “song” to match his/her beauty. Kelly, you’ve got a better shot at explaining this one than explaining echoes—but when other myomorph rodents like mice and rats piddle on their mates, we know male pheromones induce estrus in the females. And while I don’t claim to know what goes on in a rhinoceros’ brain, I think you could probably define sentience as having a major problem with all of that. “It’s not like a boy peeing,” says Roze. They are very vocal during mating season and during attacks. But not without raping them first. Other noises include wails and shrieks. The prehensile-tailed porcupines or coendous (genus Coendou) are found in Central and South America. Seven months after mating the female gives birth to a single baby. Remembering the once-a-year, 12-hour-window of fertility, it’s all the more amazing that the typical female will be pregnant or lactating for 11 months a year—every year—for much of her life. You’d never guess they could sound so adorable. All of the sounds in our library are studio-grade quality. You may choose from the sounds … The major difference between Old and New world species is that the Old World … Scale that up to a 35-pound porcupine, and that's a lot of crap. When the baby is born, its quills are soft. At this point, many male animals would simply mount the female whether she was interested or not. He first climbs the female’s tree and stands watch from a lower branch until the time is right. Damage caused by porcupines is mainly confined to stripping bark and leaves from plants. Smell ya later: Porcupines are pungent. We’re so accustomed to this by now that we just go, “Nature’s crazy, man!” and get on with our Facebooking—er, jobs. The male porcupine rears up on his hind legs, walks toward the female with a fully erect penis, and proceeds to soak her in urine with a spray forceful enough to shoot 6 feet. Once the male and female have called it quits, a magical seal forms in the vulva through some sort of enzymatic action in the semen. Either way, the musk-shake brings all the boys to the yard, and once they are there, it’s a brawl for dominance. Everyone agrees this looks kind of dopey but, during porcupine coitus, there just aren’t many safe places for a guy to touch. Mating can take place in a variety of settings, varying from tree tops to the forest floor.