Officials at Binghamton's Ross Park Zoo say their latest addition to the Morgan Road family is already the MVP (Most Valuable Porcupine).

A baby prehensile tailed porcupine was born at the Zoo on Superbowl weekend, making it's appearance on Saturday, February 3.

The porcupette is the fourth baby for prickly parents Mattie and Zoey.

Prehensile-tailed porcupines are in the Species Survival Plan, which strives to keep threatened and endangered species of animals from disappearing from the face of the Earth.

Prehensile-tailed porcupines are native to South America and feed on tree bark, buds, fruit, roots, blossoms and crops like corn and bananas.

When it was born, the new baby at Ross Park weighed 429 grams and had been weighed at 690 grams after the first week.

Anyone concerned about the comfort of mom, Zoey, rest assured porcupines are born with soft, bendable quills that gradually harden in the first few days after birth.  The quills mature after 10 weeks.

For more information about the zoo, call (607) 724-5461 or visit the website at

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