Lagidium viscacia 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Chinchillidae

Scientific Name: Lagidium viscacia (Molina, 1782)
Common Name(s):
English Southern Mountain Viscacha, Southern Viscacha
Lagidium peruanum Meyen, 1833
Taxonomic Source(s): Spotorno, A.E. and Patton, J.L. 2015. Superfamily Chinchilloidea Bennett, 1833. In: Patton, J.L., Pardinas, U.F.J. and D'Elia, G. (eds), Mammals of South America Volume 2: Rodents, pp. 762-778. University of Chicago Press.
Taxonomic Notes: In Bolivia, there are three subspecies; further taxonomic review is needed to confirm whether these should be considered to be distinct species (N. Bernal pers. comm.). Lagidium peruanum is now grouped with L. viscacia.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-03-01
Assessor(s): Bernal, N.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G.
Contributor(s): Dunnum, J., Vargas, J., Zeballos, H., Bidau, C. & Ojeda, R.
This species is listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution and presumed large population although it is restricted to rock formations. It occurs in a number of protected areas, and it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category. This species is hunted and should be periodically evaluated for impacts of this threat.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs in southern Peru, southern and western Bolivia, northern Chile and western Argentina. It occurs between 700 m in the Rio Negro province of Argentina to above 4,800 m in the mountains from central Peru through Bolivia, Chile and northwestern Argentina (Spotorno and Patton 2015). The distribution limit of this species in western Bolivia needs to be revised. This species is not present in southern Peru (H. Zeballos pers. comm.).
Countries occurrence:
Argentina; Bolivia, Plurinational States of; Chile; Peru
Additional data:
Lower elevation limit (metres):700
Upper elevation limit (metres):5100
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The species occurs in low local abundances (Cofre and Marquet 1999). It is a very common species although it has a patchy distribution, populations may fluctuate in relation to extreme seasonal weather. Osgood (1943b) recognized seven subspecies that might occur in Chile, while Crespo (1963) recognized five subspecies in central and southern Argentina, and S. Anderson (1997) mapped the ranges of three subspecies in Bolivia (Spotorno and Patton 2015).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It inhabits rocky mountain areas as well as rock outcrops in steppe habitat (Patton et al. 2015). This herbivorous species is specialized and restricted to rocky habitats where it colonizes rock crevices. Available habitat is patchy (Walker et al. 2003). It occurs up to 4,800 m asl (Barquez et al. 2006). This species is highly gregarious, and live in colonies ranging in size from 4 - 75 individuals, with an overall density of 0.162 individuals per ha due to the clumped distribution of occupied boulder fields (Spotorno and Patton 2015).
Generation Length (years):6-7

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): It is locally hunted by people for meat and fur although, in general, this does not significantly impact populations (Barquez et al. 2006). There appear to be no major threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is present in several protected areas.

Citation: Bernal, N. 2016. Lagidium viscacia. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T11148A22190789. . Downloaded on 20 September 2018.
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