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Lesser Grison (Galictis cuja)

  • Lesser Grison (Galictis cuja)

    Common Name/s: Lesser Grison  
    Scientific name: Galictis cuja
    Brazilian common name/s: Furão-pequeno, cachorro-do-mato

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

    Body length (cm): 41 (27-52)a  Tail (cm):  16(13-19) a Diet: Carnivorous
    Weight (kg): 1.6 (1.2-2.5) a Height (cm):  Home range (km2): 
    Litter size: (2-5) a Gestation (days):  Longevity (years): 
    Social structure:
     Solitary or small groups a
    Activity pattern: Diurnal and crepuscular a

    a (Yensen & Tarifa 2003)

    Physical description
    The coat is very characteristic, with a black face, neck and limbs whereas the back is gray. They have an elongated body with short legs. These animals are extremely agile and are strong swimmers and climbers.

    Habitat and Ecology
    The geographical distribution of both species of this genus is still unclear. G. cuja occurs in the south of Brazil (up to São Paulo state - Michalski et al. 2007), but the northern limits of its range have yet to be defined. Inhabits open areas from grassland to semideciduous forests, including secondary habitats, living in tree trunks, rocks, or in burrows (Reid & Helgen 2008; Yensen & Tarifa 2003). They are active mainly during the day 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 (Yensen & Tarifa 2003)

    Threats and Conservation
    Classified as “least concern” by the IUCN due to their wide distribution (Reid & Helgen 2008), however few studies report population densities and they are rare throughout their range.

    Online links
    IUCN redlist ( presents a summary of current knowledge on distribution and conservation status.

    Michalski, F., Crawshaw, P. G., de Oliveira, T. G., & Fabian, M. E. (2007). Efficiency of box-traps and leg-hold traps with several bait types for capturing small carnivores (Mammalia) in a disturbed area of Southeastern Brazil. Revista De Biologia Tropical, 55, 315-320.

    Reid, F., & Helgen, K. (2008). Galictis cuja. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.2. <>, , Downloaded on 05 July 2010.

    Yensen, E., & Tarifa, T. (2003). Galictis cuja. Mammalian Species, 728, 1-8.

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