Melly is always looking for more information about capybaras, and who can blame her? The real question is, why isn’t there more available? Some things are just too difficult to understand. At any rate, she did find this video, Wild Venezuela: The Capybara on amazon.com and was too excited not to buy it.
I was skeptical when I saw the case. Not only is that not a capybara but it is one of our arch enemies! Crocodiles are known capybara killers so what’s up with that?
We loaded it up and started watching.
I was pretty happy with the beautiful capybara images, like the one above. Look at all those capys! I am sure that many of us would scare me to death! And I don’t think I would be one of the dominant males described in the video. I probably wouldn’t be one of the subordinate males either. I’d probably be one that got run off and had to live all alone.
Melly had some problems with the video. We’re going to go over those quickly and not dwell on them.
- Monkeys probably came from Africa and not from North America as the video says.
- Rabbits are not rodents although the video tends to indicate that they are. This is a common misconception that Melly and I both wish they wouldn’t propagate
- Cavys did not come from North America but rather from Africa and are related to African porcupines.
- Giant rodents are not restricted to South America. The North American beaver is the 2nd largest rodent followed by African porcupines.
- Correct spelling of the scientific name for capybars is Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris.
- Our fur does not grow darker with age, actually gets longer and lighter in color.
- I resent them saying our eyes and nasal orifices are “protruding!” As an adaptation to aquatic life, one has to consider that closely related non-aquatic species such as guinea pigs have similar placement.
Mostly the video was pretty good and Melly, Rick and I all enjoyed watching the capybaras enjoying their wild habitat. There are a few scenes that might need adult consideration before showing to children. Specifically, there are several examples of capybara matings and one scene where a hawk is eating the eye out of a dead capybara. Ewe! I had to turn away for that last one.
It is hard to argue with all the cute baby capybaras which really steal the show.
Most of the video was shot in the Apure state in central Venezuela and a lot seems to have been taken at Hato El Frio, where Melly saw them before she got Caplin Rous. The video is from 2002, which is a long, long time ago. Sadly, the state of wild capybaras in Venezuela has probably deteriorated since then.
I recommend this video on the basis of its beautiful capybara images and the fact that it doesn’t have any competition.