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Found: One of Toronto’s Two Giant, Fugitive Rodents

Capybaras on the loose.

Capybara does its thing. (Photo: Charlesjsharp/CC BY-SA 4.0)

Have you ever seen a capybara? In some photos, they look cute enough…

Capybara, kind of cute? (Photo: Karoly Lorentey/CC BY 2.0)

But let us put this in perspective. They are giant. They can reach 150 pounds. That’s not just more than any other rodent in the world weighs, it’s more than many human women weigh. Capybaras are very large.

Now you know. (Photo: Miguel Ortiz/CC BY-SA 2.0)

The two that escaped a Toronto zoo on their very first day there were only six month old, so they had not yet reach such gargantuan size. They were both about 30 pounds—the average weight of a human two-year-old. For the past two and a half weeks, they have been hanging out in a park, where, the Guardian says, they have been “celebrated as folk heroes.”

But over the weekend, one of the two capybaras wandered into one of the zookeepers’ traps, which were baited with capybara-friendly food. The other is still lost in the woods, plotting its next move. The zoo asks that anyone who sees the remaining capybara not appraoch it, because the zoo is working hard on “gaining their trust with feeding.” 

We recommend that the capybara-at-large take some lessons from flamingoes, the only animals to successfully escape zoos—and stay escaped

Every day, we highlight one newly found object, curiosity or wonder. Discover something amazing? Tell us about it! Send your finds to [email protected]