WILD FACT of the week

The Covington News - - OPINION -

The term “ro­dent” of­ten is used when re­fer­ring to a mouse or rat. How­ever, other mam­mals in Ge­or­gia be­long to the Or­der Ro­den­tia too, in­clud­ing voles, chip­munks, squir­rels, muskrats, and beavers. Th­ese plant eaters have front in­cisor teeth and rear mo­lars but lack pointy ca­nine teeth on the sides. The front sur­face of their in­cisors is made of hard enamel while the back sur­face con­sists of softer den­tine. This dif­fer­ence in hard­ness causes the teeth to wear un­evenly and re­sults in a very sharp chisel for chomp­ing. Ro­dent in­cisors never stop grow­ing, but they get worn down while gnaw­ing on nuts, fruits, and woody plants.

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