The capybara is the largest living rodent in the world. Its closest relatives are agouti, chinchillas, coyphillas, and guinea pigs. Its common name, derived from Kapiÿva in the Guarani language, means “master of the grasses”while its scientific name, hydrochaeris, is Greek for “water hog”.
Capybaras have heavy, barrel-shaped bodies and short heads with reddish-brown fur on the upper part of their body that turns yellowish-brown underneath. Adult capybaras may grow to 130 centimetres (4.3 ft) in length, and weigh up to 65 kg (140 lb). The top recorded weight is 105.4 kg (232 lbs). Capybaras have slightly webbed feet, no tail, and 20 teeth. Their back legs are slightly longer than their front legs and their muzzles are blunt with eyes, nostrils, and ears on top of their head. Females are slightly heavier than males. Females: 80 to 145 pounds. Males: 75 to 135 pounds.