The Cape Porcupine is the largest of the african rodents and may weigh 20 pounds. The notion that, when threatened, they can throw their quills is false. However, they may rush at the foe and, on contact, imbed & release their very sharp quills. I have seen young lions with quills stuck in their face, because they had foolishly attacked a porcupine. For the lion, such an event is more serious than it sounds, because the puncture could cause death from infection. A quill is barbed at the end, making removal difficult and painful. [Deception Valley, Botswana].