Behavior

Agoutis are ground living and day active, unless heavily hunted. Their home range will often include several sleeping spots, often inside fallen hollow logs or under tree roots. These spots are so well used that well-beaten paths will radiate out from them into the forest, linking favored foraging and resting sites. A favorite food of jaguar and other large forest carnivores, agoutis and acouchis have many behaviors aimed at predator avoidance. They will freeze in mid-stride if threatened. If threats continue, they will run quickly through the forest, their passage assisted by their cone-shaped body form. When resting, they will sit in an erect body posture with feet and ankles flat on the ground, ready to dart

An agouti (Dasyprocta sp.) female, foraging. (Photo by Animals Animals ©Nigel J. H. Smith. Reproduced by permission.)

away if danger is sensed. From a standing position, they are able to leap over 6.5 ft (2 m) into the air.

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