Researchers Dr. Andy Whitworth and Dr. Henry Pollock from Osa Conservation began a new research project at our Los Amigos Conservation Hub to assess how many white-lipped peccaries are present in the world’s first conservation concession. This species has a vulnerable status with the IUCN red list and was recorded to have almost disappeared in this region of Peru for 12 years until we began to see it again at Los Amigos with prior camera trap photography efforts.
The team has already installed 30 camera traps in a grid covering 3.7 square miles (6 square km) to monitor this type of peccary and try to understand how healthy the local population is. This continued effort to learn more about this species will help guide our conservation efforts to keep it from moving closer to extinction.
Not only are we tracking peccaries at Los Amigos, but during the next few months researchers led by our co-founder Dr. Adrian Forsyth, Dr. Alejandro Lopera-Toro, and scientists from the local University of San Antonio Abad Del Cuzco will be conducting studies on the diversity of beetles in the different types of forests around this Conservation Hub. They will also conduct ecological and behavioral studies around beetle species, helping improve our knowledge of these important supporters of the rainforest’s ecosystems.
We are looking forward to the new discoveries of our researcher friends!
Our camera trap program has been implemented in our areas of work in Bolivia since 2015. We have camera traps placed in:
- TCO Tacana II, an indigenous territory we’ve worked with for decades in the North of the Department of La Paz,
- Santa Rosa del Abuná Integral Model Area, a conservation area we helped create in the department of Pando,
- Manuripi National Wildlife Reserve National Protected Area, an area for conservation we’ve been supporting also in the Department of Pando.
These places have successfully managed to register a wide variety of wild species, and have even photographed a very unique melanistic jaguar (Panthera onca). This is a color morph which occurs at about 6% frequency in jaguar populations, giving it an almost “black” look that is a stark contrast to the species normal orange/ brown complexion. This is the first time this type of jaguar has ever been recorded in the entire country of Bolivia.
Additionally, our camera traps have recorded evidence of animals which had previously been declared as no longer living in the area, as well as ones that have been categorized as endangered, near-threatened, or vulnerable by the internationally-recognized IUCN Red List of threatened species, including endangered giant otter (Pteronura brasiliensis), near-threatened jaguar (Pantera onca), bush dog (Speothos venaticus), and harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja), as well as the vulnerable white-lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) and South American tapir (Tapirus terrestris).
This story is part of a series commemorating our 20th anniversary protecting the Amazon. We’re celebrating this milestone with a look back at our 20 biggest conservation wins over the past 20 years. Click here to support camera trap conservation programs in the Amazon.