Friday, May 6, 2011

Local Students to Name New Baby Porcupine

The Museum is calling on preschoolers through eighth-grade students in Central Oregon to name its new baby porcupine. Visitors can meet the week-old baby here at 2 pm tomorrow.

The student who submits the winning name will receive a special visit with the baby porcupine and a behind-the-scenes tour of the Museum’s wildlife areas. Students may submit names through May 30 by clicking here.

After May 30, the Museum will select three names from those submitted by students, and will invite visitors to vote for the winning name with contributions dropped in ballot boxes for each name. The winning name with the highest total donations will be announced on July 4. All proceeds will support the Museum’s porcupine family and wildlife program.

Visitors can meet the baby porcupine on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 2 pm at the Museum.

“I am thrilled to have our local school children name our newest animal, because the Museum is first and foremost an educational center,” said Museum President Janeanne A. Upp. “The focus on students in this educational and fun event reflects the Museum’s tremendous value as a singular resource for arts, culture and natural sciences education.”

The newborn weighed about a pound at birth on April 29. Baby porcupines are born with all of their teeth, their eyes open, walking, and with all 30,000 of their quills. The porcupine has not grown enough for Museum wildlife specialists to see whether it is male or female.

The new baby porcupine, like its parents, cannot survive in the wild. The mother, Honeysuckle, was born at an educational facility, and never learned survival skills such as how to find water, food, and shelter away from predators. In the wild, porcupines stay with their mothers for up to a year, and learn such skills. The father porcupine, Thistle, came to the Museum from a wildlife rehabilitation facility in 2004. His injuries prevent him from surviving in the wild.

This is the third consecutive year that Honeysuckle gave birth here. Last year, her baby was named Q’will in a public naming contest.

1 comment:

  1. This is a great idea! This is an interesting way to promote visitor participation and the museum :)