The guanacos are being threatened, because they would be “harming” the sheep breeding and “cluttering up” the roads.
The guanaco (Lama guanicoe) is the largest wild camel and distribution in South America. Lives in arid and semiarid environments from the sea level to 4500 m. of altitude
Most of the guanacos in the world are in Argentina (particularly in the Patagonia region) from the Plains to the Andean corridor.
This native animal has been a basic resource for the survival of Aboriginal people who inhabited the territory of Patagonia in the pre-Columbian period: provider of food, clothing and housing. The cave paintings made by these groups bear witness to this.
The guanaco was also an alternative resource for the rural resident. With the leather made up clothes and ropes , and the meat was processed for feeding sheep dogs.
Since the late nineteenth century the guanaco populations decreased for various reasons. The introduction of domestic cattle, the construction of fences, roads and other roads were retraction of guanaco populations and fragmentation of its habitat.
Recently the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of Argentina allocated funds to the Provincial Agrarian Council carry out a survey of the number of guanacos that are in the region of Patagonia.
Apparently the population of these animals grew exponentially in recent years and have not only been turned in a competition for sheep as to the amount of food, but also have become a serious problem in the provincial routes, for the constant presence of guanacos on the roads.
This problem was brought by the farmers to the Provincial Agrarian Council and the agency decided to turn the Nation to address a census that clearly establishes what is the situation, and thus be able to make determinations to contain this situation.
While it is considered as “not threatened”, today in the population of guanacos in Patagonia (about 500,000) is substantially less than 10% of the estimated population to the European colonization (10 to 20 million).
To ensure its future sustainability is necessary to establish management standards in the different decision levels, national, provincial and local.[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-py1QY90F8%5D
By Gustavo Carrasquel | ANCA 24