All About Chinchillas

All About Chinchillas

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The slightly larger ground animal that belongs to the Chinchillidae family is native to the Andes mountains of the alpine regions in South America. Chinchillas live in the altitudes about three thousand feet to fifteen thousand feet above sea level, where the climate is cold and dry. This is what makes the fur thick as it’s provided to them because the mountain winds can be colder and harsher in their habitation of living in rocky mountains. Chinchillas have better furs, they must live in high, dry, and cold climates, and here is a list of chinchilla essential items that you should get for your pet chinchilla. 

The Chinchilla can be described as a silvery gray pelt, with black-tipped hair. Chinchillas have big round ears and eyes with narrow hind feet and long tails with grey and black hairs. Adult males weigh about 500 grams and the female weighs about 600-800 grams. The females produce up to two litters from their offspring. Chinchillas can breed at any time of the year. There are two species of Chinchilla that are similar, the Chinchilla brevicaudata and Chinchilla lanigera, the brevicaudata.

During the 18th and 19th centuries, Chinchilla breeding was born but then back in 1895 an outbreak came and destroyed a Chinchilla litter. However, a Californian mining engineer by the name of Mathias F. Chapman who worked in Chile had a liking to the Chinchilla and purchased one as a pet. This would eventually lead him to trap a herd of Chinchillas and transport them to the United States. About eleven Chinchillas were used for breeding and domestication.

How the Chinchilla helps itself to survive in the wild is jumping and climbing over rocks from predators. However, their main predator is man, that has killed millions of Chinchillas for their pelts to make fur coats. To make one Chinchilla coat you need 120 to 150 pelts. This popular creature has been known to be hunted for their fur for the clothing industry. “They have a fur coat that is a wonderful softness,” says Edmund Bickel. The Chinchillas fur is the softest and highest density of fur than any other land animal. They have about more than fifty hairs from a single follicle. “The Chinchilla is often used as an animal model in researching the auditory system,” says Partner in Research.

Chinchillas have been also useful to the U.S. National Aeronautics and NASA. The animal has a life span of 12 to 20 years. They also are used for the purpose of the study of hearing, due to their response to pure tones and happen to have the same middle-ear anatomy and nervous system connections as humans.

If you’re considering buying a Chinchilla, try to consider checking out the history of Chinchillas and to learn about their origins and habitations. When preparing to buy yourself a Chinchilla be sure you can provide an ideal environment and a cage. Be prepared when you bring your new Chinchilla to your home and give them a comfortable sense of their new environment and a comfortable presence to be able to trust you in order for you to handle them. Chinchillas have a habit of being active and playful animals. If you want to domesticate a Chinchilla, they need a lot of room to play and exercise.

They need a variety of toys to keep them active and it helps to keep their teeth in good condition. When its feeding time, a diet can consist of grass and pellets. Also, include fruits such as apples, grapes, and raisins, and vegetables such as carrots and celery. The Chinchilla digestive system is very sensitive. Also take note that they can have health problems with their eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. They also suffer from digestive problems and heatstroke.

“The good news is that the Chinchilla is not yet completely extinct. And, while we now know how to breed Chinchillas in captivity, the unfortunate truth is that, like so many species, Chinchillas are still virtually on the edge of extinction in the wild. Hopefully, we still have time to save these wonderful creatures and allow them to live unmolested by man” says Colin Campbell Sanborn of the Field Museum of Natural History in an issue of Nature Magazine 1926.

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