Tarapaca Ungulates

Project’s Chairman: Benito González

This project was funded by the Agricultural and Livestock Service (SAG) and carried out from January 2012 and April 2014. It is called “Assessment of the population ecology of vicuna (Vicugna vicugna mensalis), taruka (Hippocamelus antisensis) and guanaco (Lama guanicoe cacsilensis) and  actions to solve the human-ungulate conflict in the Tarapaca District.”.

We surveyed in the foothills and Altiplano of Tarapaca, above 2,500 meters elevation. We focused in two research areas:

  • Ungulates’ Population ecology in Tarapaca District 
  • Human-ungulate  conflict in Tarapaca District.

With census and models, we estimated the population size of vicunas, guanacos and feral donkeys in the District during dry and wet seasons. Additionally, using camera traps  and direct counting, we found tarukas, a new species for this  District. Finally, we sampled tarukas’ feces and analyzed their feeding habits.

Guanacos (Lama guanicoe) in Quebrada Blanca

Guanacos (Lama guanicoe) in Quebrada Blanca

Tarucas (Hippocamelus antisensis) in Chiapa

Tarucas (Hippocamelus antisensis) in Chiapa

We interviewed people from 37 villages about their crops, the main threats posed by ungulates and how they mitigate them. We found three villages where the problem is at a critical level. In those, we did workshops to assess the damage and we installed camera traps to record animals in agricultural fields.

If you want to check the final report click here –>tarapaca-ungulates

Workshop in Chiapa

Workshop in Chiapa

Feral donkeys (Equus asinus) in Berenguela

Feral donkeys (Equus asinus) in Berenguela