Friday, July 2, 2010
Gibnut by frog pond
Turns out the seasonal frog pond where I recorded the amazing chorus (see 5/28/10 post) was a good spot to place a camera. Where there are resources, animals of all kinds are attracted.
In this sequence, the nocturnal paca (Cuniculus paca) passes by, swings back for a closer look at the camera. The paca, known in Belize as the gibnut, is a large member of the rodent family. With its spotted pattern, individuals could likely be distinguished if there were enough images of them for comparison. I've found them to be photographed only sporadically. It may be that the seasonal flooding has driven this one out of the forest and onto the trail.
The paca occurs mainly in tropical forests and feeds primarily on fruits and seeds. It is considered a delicacy and heavily hunted throughout its range. I've never tasted it but I understand it is a rich and delicious meat.