Lyncodon patagonicus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Carnivora Mustelidae

Scientific Name: Lyncodon patagonicus
Species Authority: (de Blainville, 1842)
Common Name(s):
English Patagonian Weasel
Spanish Huroncito

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Kelt, D. & Pardinus, U.
Reviewer(s): Duckworth, J.W. (Small Carnivore Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This species is listed as Data Deficient as it is poorly known with few specimens deposited in museum collections (Redford and Eisenberg 1992, Prevosti and Pardiñas 2001, Prevosti et al. 2009) and there is no published information on current population status or major threats. Recent investigations have begun adding new localities, which are expanding the known range - but which need further work and synthesis. It is suspected that with further study, this species may be found to be appropriately listed as Least Concern, however, the category of Data Deficient is maintained until the impacts of habitat conversion, retaliatory killing and hunting are evaluated as declines may be greater than currently observed.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The species is found in temperate arid and semiarid portions of Argentina and southern Chile (Prevosti and Pardiñas, 2001). It is known to occur from Salta Province south along the western part of the country to Santa Cruz Province, and then into Chile along the southern Argentine border (Tell et al. 2001).
Countries occurrence:
Argentina; Chile
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is suspected to be rare and occur at low densities across its range, however, it is inferred to be locally common around appropriate resources. Miller et al. (1983) considered this species to be rare in Chile. New locality records were reported for northern Patagonia, Argentina (Teta et al., 2007).
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Lyncodon patagonicus is found in herbaceous and shrub steppes and xerophytic woodlands (Osgood, 1943; Prevosti and Pardiñas, 2001). Its habits are little known; available data indicate that L. patagonicus is nocturnal-crepuscular and that it preys on fossorial rodents and birds (Cabrera and Yepes, 1940; Koslowsky, 1904; Redford and Eisenberg, 1992). May be assopciated with tuc-tuc (Ctenomys spp.) communities (Tell et al. 2001).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are likely few direct threats to this species, although habitat degradation (due to sheep grazing) and occasional killing by ranchers are local threats.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is not often seen in the wild or collected. It is possible – even likely – that this species occurs in several protected areas in western Argentina (Nahuel Huapi, Lanin, Lago Puelo, Los Alerces ) or in southern Patagonia (Perito Moreno, Los Glaciares), although most of these emphasize forested habitats rather than open terrain. Further survey efforts are necessary usign appropiate techniques for the species.

Classifications [top]

3. Shrubland -> 3.4. Shrubland - Temperate
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
4. Grassland -> 4.4. Grassland - Temperate
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.1. Nomadic grazing
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.2. Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.1. Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals -> 5.1.3. Persecution/control
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
1. Research -> 1.6. Actions

Bibliography [top]

Cabrera, A. and Yepes, J. 1940. Mamíferos Sudamericanos. Ediar, Buenos Aires.

IUCN. 2008. 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Available at: (Accessed: 5 October 2008).

Koslowsky, J. 1904. Dos mamíferos de Patagonia cazados en el valle del lago Blanco (Territorio del Chubut). Revista Del Museo de La Plata 11: 129–132.

Miller, S.D., Rottmann, J., Raedeke, K.J. and Taber, R.D. 1983. Endangered mammals of Chile: status and conservation. Biological Conservation 25: 335-352.

Olrog, C. C. and Lucero, M. M. 1981. Guia de los Mamiferos Argentinos. Ministerio de Cultura y Educación, Fundación Miguel Lillo, Tucuman, Argentina.

Osgood, W. H. 1943. The mammals of Chile. Field Museum of Natural History, Zoological Series 30: 1-268.

Prevosti, F. and Pardiñas, U. 2001. Variaciones corológicas de Lyncodon patagonicus (Carnivora, Mustelidae) durante el Cuaternario. Mastozoología Neotropical 8(1): 21-39.

Redford, K.H. and Eisenberg, J.F. 1992. Mammals of the Neotropics, The Southern Cone: Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, USA.

Teta, P., Prevosti, F. J. and Trejo, A. 2008. Raptor predation and new locality records for the poorly known Patagonian Weasel (Lyncodon patagonicus) (Carnivora: Mustelidae). Mammalian Biology 73(3): 238-240.

Citation: Kelt, D. & Pardinus, U. 2008. Lyncodon patagonicus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T41647A10527961. . Downloaded on 28 November 2015.
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