Posts from the ‘High Mountains’ Category

What is a chinchilla?

The chinchilla is a small rodent closely related to the squirrel.  It looks somewhat like a long-tailed rabbit, but with smaller ears.

Chinchilla

When it is full grown the chinchilla is only about half the size of a rabbit.  Its native home is in the high, cold mountains of South America.

Chinchillas are shy little animals.  At the least alarm they scamper to the safety of their burrows among the rocks.  But they soon stick their heads out to see what is going on.

They sleep during the day and come out of their burrows of dust to feed on roots and grasses.  They hold food in their front paws and nibble it just as squirrels do.

Chinchillas are very valuable because of their thick bluish-grey for that makes beautiful fur coats.  For this reason there are not many wild chinchillas left.  Most of them have been trapped for their soft warm fur.

Chinchillas are now raised on farms for their fur just as mink and foxes are.   – Dick Rogers

What are condors and where do they live?

Condor

Condors are large, dark vultures that can be found living high up in the remote parts of the California Mountains of North America, and in the higher mountains of South America.

A condor may grow to be over 4 feet long and have a wingspread of nearly 11 feet.  It is one of the largest flying birds in the world.  The condor is useful to man as an animal garbage collector.

It helps keep the ground clean by feeding on dead animals which otherwise might present a health danger.

Like all vultures, condors have small, naked heads and hooked beaks.  They have no voice, but hiss like a snake when disturbed.  Though ugly to look at, condors are powerful and graceful in flight.

They spend much of their time wheeling and circling high overhead searching for food.  Their remarkable eyesight can spy out the smallest dead animal from great heights.

Because their wings are so large and heavy, baby condors are nearly a year old before they have the strength to soar. – Dick Rogers