Animals

Grison: 19 Facts You Won't Believe!

Interesting grison facts for kids.
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Osa Conservation’s rainforest cameras have bagged some exciting recordings lately! It is a rare population of species that are native to the Osa, known as grison, Galictis vittata andina. A Galictis vittata brasiliensis, also known as a South American wolverine that is native to Central and South America. These animals have two existing species: the greater grison, which is extensively found in South America, through Central America to southern Mexico and Guyana; and the lesser grison (Galictis cuja), which is constrained to the southern half of South America. It is usually found near rivers or streams. The grison population is doing great, even though they are rarely noticed in the wild. When the carnivore is not hunting, it spends its time in captivity in dark and remote places. Though the predators of the grison are not recognized, they have a different defense mechanism. When endangered, they will spray a yellow-green musk produced by its scent glands to impede the predators and mark its territory.

If you are finding grison interesting, know more about similar animals like weasels and honey badgers.

Grison

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Fish, birds, amphibians, and small mammals

What do they eat?

Carnivore

Average litter size?

2 - 4

How much do they weigh?

3.3-8.3 lb (1.5-3.8 kg)

How long are they?

17.7-23.6 in (45-60 cm)


How tall are they?

18 - 24 in (45 to 60 cm)


What do they look like?

Grey black

Skin Type

Fur

What are their main threats?

Humans

What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them

Tropical, Terrestrial, savanna or grassland, forest or rainforest

Locations

Central and South America

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Mammal

Scientific Name

Galictis vittata

Family

Mustelidae

Genus

Galictis

Grison Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a grison?

Grison (Galictis vittata canaster) are a type of large weasels.

What class of animal does a grison belong to?

Galictis vittata belongs to the class of mammals.

How many grisons are there in the world?

There is no information available on this.

Where do grisons live?

Galictis vittata andina lives in a wide range of forest and cerrado grasslands and is usually seen near rivers and streams. In some regions, small grison and greater grison may also be found in cultivated lands, like plantations and rice paddies.

What is a grison's habitat?

These animals are found in terrestrial habitats, though they are usually found near streams, rivers, or wetlands. They spend much of their time in closed habitats like deciduous, rain, tropical, or dry forests, woodlands, and tree roots. They have also been reported in open savanna, in cultivated lands such as plantations, cane fields, or rice fields.

Who do grisons live with?

Grisons prefer to live alone in tree roots or live in small groups of two or more. It consists of parents and the young ones. Grison forms monogamous mating pairs. They hunt together while raising their young.

How long does a grison live?

It is found that they live for at least 10 years in captivity.

How do they reproduce?

The mating system of grison is usually found to be monogamous. They give birth to their young every month between March and October, except April and July. The gestation period is about 39 days. The average litter size ranges between two to a maximum of four. Young are born quite helpless, with their eyes closed. Although their hair is short, the characteristic fur pattern is obvious. Offspring open their eyes around one week of age and by two weeks, they are able to eat flesh successfully. The young are not completely weaned off until about three and a half weeks of age. Greater grisons are fully mature at  the age of four months, and, around the same time, testes descend in the male grison.

What is their conservation status?

The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN)  has classified these animals as a species of Least Concern for conservation. It is due to the absence of major threats like humans and predators. Also because greater grisons are widely distributed, therefore the population trends are stable.

Grison Fun Facts

What does grison look like?

Greater grisons are often as related to large weasels. They have a characteristic long, slim body, with short legs and a short, hairy tail. The tail length falls within the range of 5.5 to 7.9 in (14 to 20 cm). They have pearlescent blue claws that are padded and partially webbed. Grison galictis vittata has a short, flat head. It has small, whitish, relatively broad, and rounded ears. Their eyes are brown or black that reflects blue light in the dark. A most striking feature of grison is the color of their fur which is fairly coarse and has a softer undercoat. Their dorsum is grey and separated from their under-parts by a light-colored, half-inch wide stripe. The stripe runs across their forehead and down the sides of either shoulder. Greater grisons are similar in appearance to lesser grisons but can be distinguished from the latter. The distinguishing feature between them is their larger size and their white or grey dorsal guard hairs, compared to the buff-yellow dorsal guard hairs of lesser grisons. The body length including the tail ranges from 23.6-30 in  (60-76 cm), with a weight range of 3.0-8.3 lb (1.4 to 3.8 kg). Female grisons tend to be slightly smaller and more slender as compared to males. As typical mustelid species, males have a baculum. Both males and females show anal glands on either side of their anal region.

Facts about grison.

How cute are they?

Grison is among the cuter mammals having a furry body with short legs and small head and a hairy tail.

How do they communicate?

Grisons have a number of ways to communicate, though based on observations; they have a greater reliance on olfactory senses than on their visionary senses. They mark their territory, by brushing their musk-coated tails over surfaces. Grisons also use a variety of vocalizations, including snorting when frightened or upset, purring when stroked, panting when moving from one place to another, squealing during play, and barking during aggressive behavior.

How big is a grison?

The length and height of the grison are 17.7-23.6in (45-60 cm) and 18-24in (45-60 cm) respectively. The length and height of the rice rat are 5.9-9.8 in (15-25 cm) and 2.3-3.5 in (6-9 cm) respectively. Therefore, in comparison, the grison is seven to eight times bigger than the rat.

How fast can a grison run?

Since grison has muscular legs, with five webbed toes, each ending in a sharp, curved claw, they can run pretty fast to catch their prey.

How much does a greater grison weigh?

An adult greater grison would weigh around 5-7 lb (2.3-3.2 kg)

What are the male and female names of the species?

The female grison and male grison have no different names and both are known as Galictis vittata.

What would you call a baby grison?

Baby grison has no different name and is called as offsprings of grison.

What do they eat?

Grison is a carnivore, but it is also quite opportunistic and flexible and will eat plants also, such as bananas, if offered. In the wild, the choice of prey depends on their specific location, but in general, they hunt small mammals, such as agoutis and water opossums. The stomach contents of wild grisons have also been found to have amphibians, invertebrates, reptiles, and birds. grisons have been seen hunting in pairs as well as alone. When hunting for prey, greater grisons aim for the back of the head or neck of their prey and bites down hard to kill. In captivity, grisons hold food items with their forepaws, although they do not use their feet to manipulate food items.

What does grison eat?

Although it consists mainly of small animals such as fish, amphibians, birds, and other mammals, little is known about their diet.

Are they poisonous?

No, there is yet no evidence to prove that they are poisonous.

Would they make a good pet?

Captive grisons have been observed as being both playful and very inquisitive. Play often turns into wrestling and gentle biting.

Did you know...

They are also kept in captivity to control the rodent population. They spray a yellow-green spray produced by specialized glands known as scent glands to thwart predators and protect themselves.

Different types of grison

The greater grisons are native to Central and South America, and southern Mexico. The lesser grison, is restricted to the southern half of South America.

How do grisons defend themselves?

Grisons are terrestrial mammals and move quickly in a zig-zag pattern to a variety of locations. While moving through tall grass, they often pause and stretch their neck and head above the grass to sniff their surroundings. They are good burrowers and are efficient swimmers; they can also climb partway up trees, for exploratory reasons. Both wild and captive grisons have been reported as being both playful and very inquisitive. When they face some unfamiliar object, they slinks toward the object; body stretched out, low to the ground, and retract swiftly if irritated. greater grisons jump backward when alarmed, snort, and emit a foul-smelling musk from their anal glands.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these ferret-badger facts and stoat facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable weasel coloring pages.

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