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Maned Wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus)

  • Maned Wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus)

    Common Name/s: Maned Wolf 
    Scientific name: Chrysocyon brachyurus
    Brazilian common name/s: Lobo-guará

    Quick facts (average values with minimum and maximum in parenthesis)

    Body length (cm): 106 (95-115)a Tail (cm):  45 (38-50)a Diet: Omnivorous
    Weight (kg): 25 (20-30)a Height (cm): 83a, b 
    Home range (km2):  44 (5-105)b,e,f,g,h
    Litter size: 3 (1-7)c,d Gestation (days): 65c,d Longevity (years): 16 (maximum)c,d
    Social structure: Solitary or breeding pairsa,b
    Activity pattern: Nocturnal / crepusculari

    a (Rodden et al. 2004),b (Jacomo et al. 2009), c (Maia & Gouveia 2002), d (Veado 2007), e (de Melo et al. 2006), f (Trolle et al. 2007), g (Silveira et al. 2009), h(Juarez & Marinho 2002), i (Sabato et al. 2006)

    Physical description
    The most popular carnivore of the Brazilian cerrado, this distinctive canid is impossible to mistake for any other. The coat is generally a striking reddish-gold and long black hairs form a mane that extends from the back of the head to the top of the shoulders. It has large, erect ears, elongated limbs and a striding gait. There is also black coloration at the end of the paws and snout. The tip of the neck and tail are white.

    Habitat and Ecology
    Inhabit areas of open vegetation including grasslands, savanna and scrub forest. They are found across central South America, from the north east of Brazil to the north of Uruguay.
    This species is omnivorous, incorporating a wide variety of items in their diet, which varies seasonally. They eat a large proportion of fruits such as the “fruta-do-lobo” (Solanum lycocarpum), for which the Maned wolf is the primary seed disperser. In addition to eating fruits, this species also feeds on small mammals, birds, insects and reptiles (Aragona & Setz 2001; Bueno & Motta 2004; Bueno & Motta 2009; Juarez & Marinho 2002; Jácomo et al. 2004; Queirolo & Motta-Junior 2007; Rodrigues et al. 2007; Santos et al. 2003; Silva & Talamoni 2003).
    They are territorial, and although they share the same physical space, Maned wolf couples rarely have contact except during the breeding season. During this period, they both emit characteristic vocalizations. They are facultatively monogamous (i.e. males are not absolutely necessary for rearing the litter) and commonly maintain the same breeding pair whose home ranges largely overlap (Jacomo et al. 2009). Both parents care for their offspring, at least in the early stages of the development (Brady 1981; Dietz 1984; Kleiman 1972; Veado 2007 ).

    Threats and Conservation
    Their populations have suffered significant decline, with habitat loss being the main threat to this species (Paula et al. 2008; Rodden et al. 2004). Hunting has also led to declines due to popular beliefs about body parts of the animal. With agricultural expansion, the increase in conflict due to occasional predation by Maned wolves on domestic livestock has led to even greater pressure on remaining populations (Paula et al. 2008). Road kills are also an important cause of mortality in some populations (Paula et al. 2008). They are classified by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) as a near threatened / low risk species, and by IBAMA, as threatened with extinction (Vulnerable).

    Online links
    IUCN Canid Specialist Group -

    The world"s chief body of scientific and practical expertise on the status and conservation of all canid species

    Canid News –

    Free online peer reviewed publications published by the IUCN Canid Specialist Group

    Aragona, M., & Setz, E. Z. F. (2001). Diet of the maned wolf, Chrysocyon brachyurus (Mammalia : Canidae), during wet and dry seasons at Ibitipoca State Park, Brazil. Journal of Zoology, 254, 131-136.

    Brady, C. A. (1981). The vocal repertoires of the bush dog (Speothos venaticus), crab-eating fox (Cerdocyon thous), and maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus). Animal Behaviour, 29, 649-669.

    Bueno, A. D., & Motta, J. C. (2004). Food habits of two syntopic canids, the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) and the crab-eating fox (Cerdocyon thous), in southeastern Brazil. Revista Chilena de Historia Natural, 77, 5-14.

    Bueno, A. D., & Motta, J. C. (2009). Feeding habits of the maned wolf, Chrysocyon brachyurus (Carnivora: Canidae), in southeast Brazil. Studies on Neotropical Fauna and Environment, 44, 67-75.

    Dietz, J. M. (1984). Ecology and social organization of the maned wolf. Smithsonian Contrib. Zool, 392, 1-51.

    Jacomo, A. T. D., Kashivakura, C. K., Ferro, C., Furtado, M. M., Astete, S. P., Torres, N. M., Sollmann, R., & Silveira, L. (2009). Home range and spatial organization of Maned Wolves in the Brazilian grasslands. Journal of Mammalogy, 90, 150-157.

    Juarez, K. M., & Marinho, J. (2002). Diet, habitat use, and home ranges of sympatric canids in central Brazil. Journal of Mammalogy, 83, 925-933.

    Jácomo, A. T. A., Silveira, L., & Diniz, J. A. F. (2004). Niche separation between the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), the crab-eating fox (Dusicyon thous) and the hoary fox (Dusicyon vetulus) in central Brazil. Journal of Zoology, 262, 99-106.

    Kleiman, D. G. (1972). Social behavior of the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) and bush dog (Speothos venaticus): a study in contrast. Journal of Mammalogy, , 791-806.

    Paula, R. C., Medici, P., & Morato, R. G. (2008). Plano de Ação para a Conservação do Lobo-Guará - Análise de Viabilidade Populacional e de Habitat. Brasília: Centro Nacional de Pesquisas para Conservação dos Predadores Naturais - CENAP/ICMBio.

    Queirolo, D., & Motta-Junior, J. C. (2007). Prey availability and diet of maned wolf in Serra da Canastra National Park, southeastern Brazil. Acta Theriologica, 52, 391-402.

    Rodden, M., Rodrigues, F. H. G., & Bestelmeyer, S. (2004). Maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus: Illiger 1815). In C. Sillero-Zubiri, M. Hoffmann & D. W. Macdonald (Eds.), Canids: Foxes, Wolves, Jackals and Dogs. Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan (pp. 26-31). Gland / Cambrigde:  IUCN.

    Rodrigues, F. H. G., Hass, A., Lacerda, A. C. R., Grando, R. L. S. C., Bagno, M. A., Bezerra, A. M. R., & Silva, W. R. (2007). Feeding Habits Of The Maned Wolf  (Chrysocyon Brachyurus) In The Brazilian Cerrado. Mastozoología Neotropical, 14, 37-51.

    Sabato, M. A. L., de Melo, L. F. B., Magni, E. M. V., Young, R. J., & Coelho, C. M. (2006). A note on the effect of the full moon on the activity of wild maned wolves, Chrysocyon brachyurus. Behavioural Processes, 73, 228-230.

    Santos, E. F., Setz, E. Z. F., & Gobbi, N. (2003). Diet of the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) and its role in seed dispersal on a cattle ranch in Brazil. Journal of Zoology, 260, 203-208.

    Silva, J. A., & Talamoni, S. A. (2003). Diet adjustments of maned wolves, Chrysocyon brachyurus (Illiger)(Mammalia, Canidae), subjected to supplemental feeding in a private natural reserve, Southeastern Brazil. Revista Brasileira de Zoologia, 20, 339-345.

    Silveira, L., Furtado, M. M., Torres, N. M., Sollmann, R., Uhl, G., & Jacomo, A. T. D. A. (2009). Maned Wolf Density in a Central Brazilian Grassland Reserve. Journal of Wildlife Management, 73, 68-71.

    Trolle, M., Noss, A. J., Lima, E. D. S., & Dalponte, J. C. (2007). Camera-trap studies of maned wolf density in the Cerrado and the Pantanal of Brazil. Biodiversity and Conservation, 16, 1197-1204.

    Veado, B. V. (2007). Parental behaviour in maned wolf Chrysocyon brachyurus at Belo Horizonte Zoo. International Zoo Yearbook, 35, 279-286.

    de Melo, L. F., Sábato, M. A., Magni, E. M., Young, R. J., & Coelho, C. M. (2006). Secret lives of maned wolves (Chrysocyon brachyurus Illiger 1815): as revealed by GPS tracking collars. Journal of zoology, 271, 27-36.


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