Can Porcupines Swim?


  • Both ground-dwelling Old World porcupines (found in Europe, Africa, and Asia) and tree-climbing New World porcupines (found in North, Central, and South America) are good swimmers
  • Their hollow or spongy quills act like a natural lifejacket and help keep them afloat
  • Porcupines spend time in streams and ponds eating aquatic plants – the New World porcupines are especially fond of pond weeds, water lilies and arrowhead.
  • To dry off, porcupines often prefer the slow-drip method instead of shaking, which dislodges loose quills, or using a towel, which they find more trouble than it’s worth

Want more evidence?
The Wood Hermit
North American Porcupine
African Crested Porcupine

Have you seen one swim? Let us know below.

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