A census of the Brazilian project Onças do Iguaçu in partnership with the Argentine entity Yguaraté showed that the number of animals in Parque do Iguaçu, on the border between the two countries, is over 20 years old.
Currently, about 93 guinea fowl live in the region, according to the mapping of an area of more than 582 thousand hectares. In 2005, the population consisted of about 40 animals. This was the largest survey carried out by the institutions.
The study was prepared from two simultaneous biannual censuses in the two countries. Over the last 20 years, the projects will monitor the guinea fowl that live in the Corredor Verde region, the largest concentration of felines in the Atlantic Forest.
Despite the increase, the number is still considerably lower than in previous years. Between 1990 and 1995, it is estimated that the Iguaçu National Park harbored between 400 and 800 painted onças.
The main causes of the decline, according to the projects, were hunting and slaughter due to cattle predation. No Brasil, or queixada, a mammal that is the main food item of the onça-pintada, was extinct for about 20 years, until 2016.
For the realization of the study, 224 different points were observed in the Brazilian and Argentine territory over four consecutive months, and more than 450 thousand images were obtained.
After compiling all these materials, a cross-reference of information was made based on the quantity of hectares covered by the sample and on the quantity of different registered onças.
The result will generate a population chart, or be, an index that shows the minimum and maximum number of existing animals, being impossible to reach an exact number.
The Green Corridor shelters close to a third of all the guinea fowl of the Atlantic Forest. According to the organizations, it is the region with the most suitable habitat for that species.
“It is an encourager or fact that, after the great population loss suffered in the 90s, the population of guinea fowl in the Green Corridor has been recovering for more than a decade, having doubled between 2005 and 2016. As of 2016, The population seems to be stabilized at values close to 100 animals”, affirmed Yara Barros, executive coordinator of the Onças do Iguaçu Project.
Source: CNN Espanol