Porcupines of the Rio Grande on KUNM!

Dan Shaw with BEMP students, putting a microchip and radio collar on a porcupine so that students can later track the porcupine’s movements in the bosque.


BEMP was recently invited to be on Albuquerque’s Public Radio station KUNM for the Children’s Hour (originally broadcast on Nov 11, 2017). BEMP Co-Director (and porcupine expert!) Dan Shaw and about 20 kids joined host Katie Stone, and shared all about BEMP’s favorite animal – PORCUPINES! Jayden and Elena were the  BEMP students who helped Dan educate the listener audience about porcupines. One thing the students talked a lot about is keeping dogs on leashes so that the dogs don’t stress out wild animals like porcupines and so that dogs don’t end up with a face full of quills! BEMP is one of the only organizations studying this charismatic animal in the Southwest.

At one point the host asked if porcupines can shoot their quills – and Jayden and Elena told the listeners that NO, this is a myth – they can’t shoot their quills. AND… their quills have an antibiotic property on them so that if a porcupine gets stuck by its own quill, it won’t get an infection!

And here’s a great quote from a student: “You know those things you put the sewing needles into? That what spawns a porcupine!” hee hee!

Thanks to KUNM for hosting BEMP and for sharing about this wonderful creature!