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agouti(əgo͞o`tē), name applied to rabbit-sized rodents of the genus Dasyprocta, found in Central and South America and in the West Indies. They have slender limbs with five front and three hind toes, rudimentary tails, and coarse rough hair that varies from reddish to dark brown depending upon the species. Agoutis are forest dwellers; they eat fruits, leaves, roots, nuts, and sugarcane. They are good swimmers and fast runners. Agouti is occasionally used instead of Cuniculus as the generic name of the related paca, or spotted cavycavy
, name for 14 species of South American rodents of the family Caviidae, including the domestic guinea pig. The wild cavies are usually small, rounded, and tailless, with fur of a uniform shade of brown.
..... Click the link for more information. . Agoutis are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
..... Click the link for more information. , subphylum Vertebrata, class Mammalia, order Rodentia, family Dasyproctidae.
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A hystricomorph rodent, Dasyprocta, in the family Dasyproctidae, with 13 species.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.