HOUSTON – The Houston Zoo recently welcomed it’s newest bundles of joy -- the capybara pups Bruno and Pepa, named for the characters from the beloved children’s film “Encanto.”
The pups were born April 11 to first-time mom, Squirt, and dad, Rio. After delivery, Squirt and her pups spent several days bonding before making their public debut. You can now see the capybaras in the Houston Zoo’s South America’s Pantanal exhibit, in the grasslands habitat.
This is third capybara litter the Zoo has had in the past 10 years.
“Native to Central and South America, capybaras are the largest rodent in the world,” according to the Houston Zoo’s news release about the pups. “They are related to the guinea pig and weigh 50 times as much. Capybaras are born with fur, opened eyes and a full set of teeth. They grow and learn very fast. Bruno and Pepa started eating solids the day after they were born, typical for the species as their teeth develop rapidly. Bruno and Pepa are already excellent swimmers and will adopt a semi-aquatic lifestyle. Capybara’s webbed feet help them swim and traverse in soft, muddy ground and can stay underwater for up to five minutes. They can also press their ears against their heads to keep water out and once they exit the water, their thin coat of coarse hair dries quickly. "