Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris

capybara 1
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Mammals
Order: Rodentia
Family: Hydrochoeridae

We are home to one male capybara called Johnson, who lives with our family of Brazilian tapir.

Capybaras are semi-aquatic animals, found in densely forested areas near water in much of South America.

They are herbivores, mainly grazing on grasses and aquatic plants.

Interesting facts!

  • Capybaras are the largest rodent in the world!
  • Like other rodents, capybaras teeth grow continuously, so they graze on grasses, aquatic plants and other plentiful plants to wear them down.
  • Their scientific name means ‘water pig’, as they are semi- aquatic and can stay submerged in water for up to 5 minutes. Their bodies are specially adapted for swimming including webbed feet and the location of their eyes, ears and nostrils on top of their heads.


Capybaras are common throughout their native range and are listed as being Least Concern. However they are hunted for their meat and hide.