Teddy Bear is a male Porcupine who is a resident and mascot for Zooniversity, a teaching zoo in Texas.
He was abandoned by his mother at birth on May 4th 2003 and rescued by a Texas farmer. He needed intensive care, due to his medical problems was subsequently well handled by the people caring for him.
Teddy Bear enjoying his bowl of treats……
Teddy Bear is a North American porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum), found in all 48 contiguous U.S. states, as well as in Canada and Mexico. He is unable to be returned to the wild as he would most likely not survive on his own. He has no fear of humans, dogs or other wildlife and would actually approach them, therefore making him un-releasable.
He is now an animal ambassador for Zooniversity®, Dallas, Texas, USA, teaching people worldwide all about porcupines. YouTube videos with this very vocal porcupine are simply a sideline….but this sideline has made him famous around the world!
It all started in May 2011, one of his keepers wanted to test a new video camera, so she recorded him eating an ear of corn and making noises and posted it on YouTube, (see video below) It was not viewed for 6 months, until someone else posted it on a viral site. It went viral in just a few days with over 1 million views. Videos were even shown on all the major networks. It was incredible…..but when you watch them…..not surprising…..!
Here is his first video….Teddy Bear doesn’t like to share……
If you enjoyed that….check out our other funny videos…..
People think his porcupine noises are his attempt at “talking” and they hear human words in his sounds, so viewers think he is speaking English, or Japanese, or Dutch – and teenagers around the world just thought he was saying naughty things.
So is he really talking…? All porcupines make some guttural noises when they’re happy or when they want to communicate something – Teddy is just more vocal than most. It does sound a lot like Teddy’s mumblings are remarkably like human words.
Although he loves pumpkin and corn, they are only special treats for videos, appearances or special occasions, they are not part of his daily diet. In the wild they eat leaves and bark. At Zooniversity®, he eats his natural foods, as well as a balanced zoological diet.
Teddy Bear enjoys a Valentine’s Day treat…with subtitles…hilarious….
Did you notice his teeth are red? They’re supposed to be red! Wood-chewing rodents have a hard outer tooth enamel that is rich in red-colored iron. The inner tooth layer is soft and pithy. Nature designed this multi-layered tooth to be self-sharpening. As the porcupine chews on wood, the soft under layer wears away, leaving a razor-sharp and iron-strong bevelled edge.
Teddy does have 35,000 barbed quills underneath all that soft, fluffy guard hair. The quills cover every part of his body, except his face, paws and belly. We don’t often get “quilled,” as we are not a threat to him and he doesn’t feel the need to ward us off. If he did feel threatened, Teddy would first flair his tail hair and show you his quills as a warning. If you didn’t heed his warning, he’d then spin like a top and whack you with his tail full of quills. And yes it hurts!
It’s an old wives tale that porcupines shoot their quills — they can’t!
Teddy Bear is one good looking porcupine…..
You can meet Teddy in person, if you book with Zooniversity® to do a wildlife program at your school, PTA meeting, church, library or scout troop. He can also be scheduled for Private Meet-n-Greets – they’ve had fans fly in from both East and West coasts just to meet Teddy in person!
You Can Watch, Like, Tweet and Pin “Teddy Bear” — He’s a Social Animal!
Thanks to Zooniversity for sharing his story and for the incredible videos…