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Chacoan Peccary (Catagonus wagneri) Fact Sheet: Population & Conservation Status

Chacoan Peccary (Catagonus wagneri)

Population Status

Population estimates

  • A large but cryptic species—difficult to estimate population sizes (Altrichter et al. 2018)
    • Rarest of the peccary species (Altrichter et al. 2018)
  • Total population
    • Unknown (Altrichter et al. 2018)
    • A rough estimate of 3,200 individuals in 2002; however, large-scale deforestation subsequently occurred since these data were collected (Altrichter et al. 2015)
      • Some authors suggest as many as 5,000 individuals; however,
  • Populations are declining and fragmented (Altrichter et al. 2015, 2018)
    • Severe declines of greater than 50% from 1980-2011 (Altrichter et al. 2015)
  • Local extinctions (Altrichter et al. 2018)
    • This species has disappeared from large parts of its native range in Argentina (Altrichter et al. 2015)
  • In the Argentine Chaco, is the rarest of the three peccary species and is most harmed by human disturbance (Altrichter et al. 2015)

Conservation Status


  • Endangered (2011 assessment) (Altrichter et al. 2015)
    • Endangered: 1994-time of this writing)
    • Vulnerable: 1982-1994


  • Appendix I (UNEP 2019)
    • Some exceptions for exportation of live animals from Argentina

Endangered Species Act

  • Not listed

Threats to Survival

  • Habitat destruction
  • Uncontrolled hunting
  • Predation by larger felids
  • Probably livestock diseases

Recommended Management Actions

  1. Create a national park where a large peccary population remains
  2. Establish private reserves to protect other significant populations
  3. Enforce hunting regulations
  4. Use the Chacoan peccary as a "flagship species" to support environmental education programs for the Gran Chaco
  5. Strengthen wildlife management efforts aimed at monitoring populations
  6. Breeding in managed care
  7. Translocate animals from areas being deforested to parks
  8. Continue research projects directed at making effective management

Challenges for Peccaries

Group of Chacoan Peccaries resting on top of each other

Habitat destruction and overhunting are two challenges that peccaries face.

The Chacoan peccary's small range and biology make it particuarly vulnerable to human disturbance.

Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. All rights reserved.

Page Citations

Baillie & Groombridge (1996)
Kingswood et al. (1991)
Mayer & Brandt (1982)
Mayer & Wetzel (1986)
Oliver (1993)
Redford & Eisenberg (1992)
Sowls (1997)
Taber et al. (1993)
Taber et al. (2015)
Wijnstekers (1995)

SDZWA Library Links