5201, MUSKRAT 9''L are anatomically scaled to create the best reproduction of the life size stuffed animal and the most realistic stuffed animal in the industry.
The muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus) is a medium-sized semiaquatic rodent native to North America. It lives in wetlands over a wide range of climates and habitats. It has important effects on the ecology of wetlands and is a resource of food and fur for humans. The muskrat is the largest species in the subfamily Arvicolinae, which includes 142 other species of rodents, mostly voles, and lemmings. Muskrats are referred to as "rats" in a general sense because they are medium-sized rodents with an adaptable lifestyle and an omnivorous diet. They are not, however, members of the genus Rattus. They are not closely related to beavers, with which they share habitat and general appearance.
Muskrats are covered with short, thick fur, which is medium to dark brown or black in color, with the belly a bit lighter (countershaded); as the animal ages, it turns partly gray. The fur has two layers, which provide protection from cold water. They have long tails covered with scales rather than hair. To aid in swimming, their tails are slightly flattened vertically, a shape that is unique to them. When they walk on land, their tails drag on the ground, which makes their tracks easy to recognize. Muskrats can close off their ears to keep water out. Their hind feet are webbed and are their main means of propulsion. Their tail functions as a rudder, controlling the direction they swim in.
Muskrats are found in North America and Eurasia. North American population occurs from the northern parts of the continent southwards to the Gulf coast, reaching the Mexican border. They mostly inhabit wetlands, areas in or near saline and freshwater wetlands, rivers, lakes, streams, or ponds.
- Due to so-called 'regional heterothermia' - a special adaptation that regulates the blood flow to their limbs and tail - these parts of their body usually remain cooler than the core of the body.
- As accomplished swimmers, muskrats are capable of swimming not only forwards, but also backward.
- Finding food, the muskrat will not consume it right on the spot. Instead, the animal will carry its meal to a special feeding spot, located either in the water or near one of its daily routes. Muskrats usually leave a pile of shells known as "midden."
- One of the most distinctive features of the muskrat, for which the animal is actually named, is its musk. Below its tail, this rodent has 2 scent glands, which emit the characteristic scent. This odor serves as a form of communication, informing conspecifics of nearby threats.
- As opposed to the closely related beaver, the muskrat doesn't collect winter food supply, since this animal consumes only fresh plants. During the winter, the rodent survives due to digging through the mud to come out of its den and get to plants, located under the layer of ice.
- During the cold winter months, muskrats often huddle together in groups to conserve heat in their lodges.
- Consuming cattails, otherwise known as an "eat-out", groups of muskrats are able to open up areas of shallow water, thus creating suitable conditions for certain water plants as well as shelters for water birds.
Product Dimension: 8.66(L) X 4.33(W) X 5.91(H)
HANSA CREATION, INC. Woodland & Prairie is HANSA CREATION's hand-crafted collection of realistic plush animals. It takes great pride in each enchanting work of soft sculpture art, carefully designed to educate, fascinate, captivate and inspire creative play for collectors of all ages.
Artists create each HANSA animal from portraits of the creature in its natural habitat appropriately called Hansa Creation Portrait's in Nature. It is HANSA's uncompromising integrity in design and quality standards that has charmed collectors for generations and continues to mesmerize new collectors of all ages.
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