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Read the Story and Answer the Questions. Practice vocabulary.


1. The capybara (say cap-i-BAR-uh) lives in Central and South America. It is exceptional because it is the largest rodent in the world. One trait of a rodent is this: the teeth continue to grow throughout its life. A rodent has to knaw on things continuously to keep its teeth from growing too long. Capybaras are much larger than most rodents. They can grow up to 4 feet long and weigh over one hundred pounds.

2. Capybaras live in family groups of up to twenty individuals. During the dry season, they may form larger groups. Females have litters with as many as six babies. The babies have fur and their eyes are open when they are born.

3. Their fur is very coarse which causes their skin to dry out easily. Partly because of this, they spend a lot of time wallowing in mud and shallow water. They sometimes use the water to their advantage to escape from predators. They swim with their noses above the water, but they can go under water for brief periods.

4. Capybaras' diet consists of aquatic plants, grains and fruit. They will raid gardens or crops and deplete the food supply. People sometimes hunt capybaras to protect their crops and also for their meat.


Answer the questions:

1. Which traits of capybaras are listed in the story?

A. They are born blind, they knaw on things and they swim.

B. They knaw on things, they are very large, and they have coarse fur.

C. They eat fruit, they have coarse fur and they run very fast.

D. They can swim under water, they wallow in mud, and they chase people.

2. What does "exceptional" mean?

A. fairly normal

B. not all right

C. unusual

D. accepting

3. What is an antonym of shallow?

A. wide

B. clear

C. tall

D. deep

4. What is coarse fur like?

A. soft and fluffy

B. a tan-brown color

C. harsh, not soft

D. slight, not much

5. What is a synonym for "deplete?"

A. decrease

B. deprive

C. desert

D. despair

6. When may capybaras form larger groups?

A. the rainy season

B. the summer

C. the dry season

D. the spring

(answers below)

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