Porcupine hangs on a willow tree branch, Alaska
© Design Pics/Danita Delimon
Psycho quiller!. Porcupine
Psycho quiller? Nope, this is no homicidal rodent. Act friendly and keep a tail's length of distance, and you should be safe from a spiny fate. (That thing about porcupines launching their quills at you like darts? Yeah, total myth.)
But make no mistake – These pudgy rodents are more than able to put the hurt on perceived predators. Porcupine quills are lined with barbs that make them difficult – and extremely painful – to extract. Even the burliest bear or the toothiest cougar fears a snoutful of spines, so most stalkers of forest prey are content to leave Spike here alone.