Project Description

Chacoan Peccary

Catagonus wagneri

Animal Class: Mammals

Length: 41 inches

Weight: 64-95 lbs

Life Span: data insufficient

Diet: Fruit, leaves, roots, stems, and seeds in the wild.

Habitat: The Gran Chaco region of Argentina, Bolivia, and Paraguay

Status: Endangered (IUCN)

While peccaries look a little like pigs, they belong to a different family, and have different anatomy. One difference is that peccaries have a scent gland on their backs, which they use to mark their territory and identify other members of their group, while domesticated pigs do not.

In their semi-arid thorn forest, open woodland, and savanna habitats, peccaries have adapted to eat different kinds of cacti. They remove the spines by rolling the plants on the ground with their tough snouts. Their specialized kidneys break down cacti acid, and two-chambered stomachs are well suited to digest tough foods.

Chacoan peccaries are considered an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to overhunting and habitat fragmentation by large ranches.

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