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Greater Grison (Galictis vittata)

  • Greater Grison (Galictis vittata)

    Common Name/s: Greater Grison  
    Scientific name: Galictis vittata
    Brazilian common name/s: Furão, cachorro-do-mato

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


    Body length (cm): 68(45-76)a,b  Tail (cm):  16(13-20) a,b Diet: Carnivorous
    Weight (kg): 2.3(1.5-4) a, b Height (cm):  Home range (km2): 4c
    Litter size: (1-4) b Gestation (days): 39 b Longevity (years): 
    Social structure: Solitary or family groups b
    Activity pattern: Crepuscular and nocturnal b

    a (Emmons & Feer 1997), b (Yensen & Tarifa 2003), c (Sunquist et al. 1989)

    Physical description
    The coat is very characteristic, with a black face, neck and limbs whereas the and back is gray. The boundary between the two colours is delineated by a white band that extends from the head to the side of the neck .They have an elongated body with short legs. These animals are extremely agile and are strong swimmers and climbers (Yensen & Tarifa 2003).

    Habitat and Ecology
    The geographical distribution of both species of this genus is still unclear. G. vittata occurs mainly in the north of Brazil, but the southern limits of its range have yet to be defined. G. vittata inhabits forests and open areas, including secondary habitats, living in tree trunks, rocks, or in burrows that they dig (Sunquist et al. 1989; Yensen & Tarifa 2003). They are active both day and night and are often seen in pairs or small groups (probably families), who communicate through vocalizations (Yensen & Tarifa 2003).
    Their diet includes small mammals, birds and their eggs, reptiles, amphibians, insects and fruit (Emmons & Feer 1997; Yensen & Tarifa 2003).

    Threats and Conservation
    Classified as “least concern” by the IUCN due to their wide distribution, and they do appear resilient to impacts of forest fragmentation (Michalski & Peres 2005). However few studies report population densities and they are rare throughout their range.

    Online links
    IUCN redlist (http://www.iucnredlist.org) presents a summary of current knowledge on distribution and conservation status

    REFERENCES
    Emmons, L. H., & Feer, F. (1997). Neotropical rainforest mammals: a field guide. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

    Michalski, F., & Peres, C. A. (2005). Anthropogenic determinants of primate and carnivore local extinctions in a fragmented forest landscape of southern Amazonia. Biological Conservation, 124, 383-396.

    Sunquist, M. E., Sunquist, F., & Daneke, D. E. (1989). Ecological separation in a Venezuelan llanos carnivore community. In K. H. Redford & J. F. Eisenberg (Eds.), Advances in Neotropical mammalogy (pp. 197–232). Gainesville, Florida: Sandhill Crane Press.

    Yensen, E., & Tarifa, T. (2003). Galictis vittata. Mammalian Species, 727, 1-8.
     

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