'Prickly Customer': Sweet Potato-Loving Cape Porcupine Named Louie Born at Monarto Safari Park

South Australia’s Monarto Safari Park has welcomed the arrival of a baby Cape porcupine named Louie.

The two-month-old was born in late January to mom Rita and dad Oliver. Its sex is currently not known and will be confirmed at a six-month health check as it’s difficult to sex them visually.

“Since the day Louie arrived they’ve been full of attitude, just like their mum,” keeper Gemma Asser was quoted as saying in a Zoos SA press release. “They stomp their feet and rattle their tail to make sure us keepers and Oliver know who’s boss.

“Louie also enjoys zoomies in the den with Mum and Dad needing to get out of the way but not for too long … Louie is extremely attached to Dad and follows him everywhere.

“While dad Oliver is a laid-back character with sleek quills, mum, Rita, is ‘large and in charge’. But while their personalities differ there is one thing that definitely bonds the family and that is their love of sweet potato,” Asser added.

Fortunately for Louie’s mom, Cape porcupines are born with soft quills that harden as they age.

The Cape porcupine is the largest rodent in Africa and the largest porcupine in the world. They are found all across southern, central, and eastern Africa, and, although hunting has reduced the population in some areas, their numbers remain stable, according to Africa Geographic. Credit: Zoos SA via Storyful