The Wildlife Conservation Society has launched a study in Chile’s Karukinka reserve on Tierra del Fuego to help protect the guanaco – a wild cousin of the llama that once roamed in vast herds from the Andean Plateau to the steppes of Patagonia.
Today, the guanaco population has dwindled to perhaps half a million animals that live in highly fragmented populations due to habitat loss and competition from livestock. Tierra del Fuego, especially Karukinka, holds the largest wild population of Chilean guanacos. The WCS study of these poorly understood members of the camel family will provide critical data to help restore one of the most endangered natural phenomena in Latin America – the overland migration of guanacos – a critical element to understanding biodiversity of the area.
Donated to WCS by Goldman Sachs in 2004, Karukinka consists of 740,000 acres of wilderness, including the world’s southernmost old-growth forest as well as extensive peat bogs, unique river systems, and grasslands. Goldman Sachs has provided key funding for this guanaco study.
“This study is pivotal in understanding the ecological importance of the guanaco and ultimately conserving them as a species,” said Dr. Steven E. Sanderson, President and CEO of the Wildlife Conservation Society. “Historically, guanacos played a similar ecological role in Latin America as did bison in North America, with vast herds wandering over large landscapes. We commend Goldman Sachs for their support to help protect an iconic species that is so important to Tierra del Fuego’s natural heritage.”
A team of WCS researchers have successfully equipped eight guanacos from seven family groups with radio collars to better understand their current movements. The researchers are particularly interested in how guanacos adapt to seasonal changes in the landscape and how they are affected by livestock grazing and other human factors outside of the reserve. The WCS research will provide an understanding of key factors that affect guanaco distribution, abundance, and social composition, as well as show migratory patterns.
Throughout the world, overland migrations of ungulates like guanaco are endangered due to a variety of issues ranging from habitat fragmentation to over-hunting. The Wildlife Conservation Society is working to protect wildlife migrations in several key regions around the world.
In addition to the guanaco study, the Wildlife Conservation Society has already begun other conservation activities in the reserve, including wetlands restoration and limited low-impact ecotourism. For more information on the reserve, go to: http://www.karukinkanatural.cl/Karukinka/index-english.htm
The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth.
Stephen Sautner | alfa
Machine learning helps predict worldwide plant-conservation priorities
04.12.2018 | Ohio State University
From the Arctic to the tropics: researchers present a unique database on Earth’s vegetation
20.11.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.
Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...
Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...
What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.
Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...
Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.
Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...
New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals
Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.
10.12.2018 | Event News
06.12.2018 | Event News
03.12.2018 | Event News
12.12.2018 | Trade Fair News
12.12.2018 | Information Technology
12.12.2018 | Life Sciences