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Priscilla Chow, 8 (Palmetto Bay, FL)

Machu Picchu Viscachas

Priscilla Chow, 8

My family and I traveled on a train from Cusco to Machu Picchu. Once we got there at noon, we spotted two Machu Picchu viscachas on a wall. I asked our tour guide why there were squirrels there and he said that they're Machu Picchu viscachas. They looked like squirrels to me; they were just a little bigger. They both had short oval ears, fluffy grey pelts, and long curly tails. The Machu Picchu viscachas were climbing the wall. They didn’t seem scared at all; they were probably used to people around. Then I suddenly noticed another Machu Picchu viscachas playing in the field. As we kept walking, we went by an arch. I saw one more Machu Picchu viscachas inside the stone arch. I was so shocked that there were so many Machu Picchu viscachas in Machu Picchu.

In fact, I thought they didn’t really exist. Before this trip, I had read a fairytale on Machu Picchu viscachas and I thought they were just fictional. After this trip, I did some research on Machu Picchu viscachas and found out that they usually come out at dusk. Then I realized how lucky we were on that day! I also learned Machu Picchu viscachas, which can be called Inca rabbits, live in Cusco and Machu Picchu. My new knowledge of Machu Picchu viscachas included the facts that they eat grass, seeds, and insects, they belong to the Chinchillidae family, and their relative, the chinchilla, is an endangered species.

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