'Proyecto Taguá' conservation programme for the Chacoan peccary

Chacoan peccary – peculiar and threatened

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and a Chaco peccary, also called Taguá, certainly doesn't have the easiest job in winning hearts compared to other cute animals on show. They need their own special kind of conservation as a result. As the largest of the three peccary species, the Chaco peccary lives in the Dry Chaco in the border regions of Paraguay, Bolivia and Argentina.

Yet the thornbush habitat of the Dry Chaco is being transformed into pasture land by the constantly expanding and ever-growing number of cattle breeding farms – the habitat is disappearing and the Taguá along with it. It is estimated that the number of Paraguayan Chaco-dwelling rugged beauties is only around 2,000–3,000. The San Diego Zoological Society and other North American zoos established the 'Proyecto Taguá' protection and breeding station in Fortin Toledo in Paraguay to help preserve the Chaco peccary in 1985.

Tierpark Berlin supports the 'Proyecto Taguá' protection and breeding station

Around 100 Chaco peccary animals currently live in several groups in the station. It is the first and, to date, only conservation and breeding programme for these endangered species of peccary in South America. The first group of the animals bred there traveled to the USA in 1996, in a move financed by US zoos so that a breeding programme could be established there. The first offspring from the USA arrived in Europe in 2012 – to the Tierpark Berlin, where the first European cultivation succeeded in 2013.

Tierpark Berlin has been the first European zoo to also financially support the upkeep of the 'Proyecto Taguá' breeding station in Paraguay since 2013. The financial support from the Tierpark has enabled the new construction and extension of enclosures, the purchase of more food and medicine as well as the undertaking of research and conservation projects into the rare species of the Chaco peccary.

More information can be found at www.cccipy.org