White-Lipped Peccary Movement and Range in Agricultural Lands of Central Brazil

  • Maria Luisa S. P. JorgeEmail author
  • Alexine Keuroghlian
  • Jennifer Bradham
  • Júlia Emi F. Oshima
  • Milton Cezar Ribeiro


White-lipped peccaries (WLPs) are known as forest-dependent species and are thus expected to respond negatively to deforestation. Yet, little is known about how WLP herds use agricultural lands where high portions (i.e., more than 50%) of the native forest have been removed. In order to understand how WLPs access and use forested habitats nested within agricultural landscapes, we analyzed WLP movement (i.e., linear distances moved) at varying temporal intervals (3 h, 6 h, 12 h, 24 h, 168 h, and 720 h) and monthly herd ranges (MCP 30%, 50%, 70%, and 90%) in two agricultural regions of Central Brazil. Short- and long-term movement did not show variation across months or seasons. Yet, long-term movement and ranges positively correlated with the diversity of available fruits and negatively correlated with the percent of forest cover. Furthermore, the negative relationship between ranges and forest cover was more pronounced during the wet season, with herds in areas with less forest cover having ranges twice as large as those in areas with more forest cover. Our results suggest that short-term movement is most likely reflective of internal drivers (e.g., body shape, physiology). On the other hand, long-term movement and ranges respond to external drivers, which, in this case, are most likely changes in the spatiotemporal distribution of fruiting trees in areas with less forest cover. Our results provide important information for the conservation of this keystone species by establishing that WLPs are negatively affected by forest removal, of which the consequences may be exacerbated with seasonality.


Fragmentation Frugivory GPS technology Trophic interactions Tropical forests Ungulates 



We thank Maria do Carmo Andrade Santos, Paulino Oliveira Ângelo, Renata Reinoso Rocha, and Marcello Schiavo Nardi (our project veterinarian) for their assistance in capturing, collaring, and monitoring white-lipped peccaries, sampling fruits, and plant identification. We thank Donald P. Eaton for previous edits. We thank all the volunteers that have participated on the project, especially teachers Jeff Wilford and Liz Kinzly, the Global Ecotours and Expeditions volunteers, and Chatham University. We acknowledge and appreciate the support from the local communities for access to land and key information regarding the local flora and fauna. This research was graciously funded by FAPESP (grant n. 2013/50421-2 and 2014/23132-2), CNPq (grant n. 312045/2013-1; 312292/2016-3 and scholarship: 161089/2014-3), Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the Overbrook Foundation, the International ReSource Award, WCS Brasil, and Vanderbilt University.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria Luisa S. P. Jorge
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Alexine Keuroghlian
    • 3
  • Jennifer Bradham
    • 1
  • Júlia Emi F. Oshima
    • 4
  • Milton Cezar Ribeiro
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA
  3. 3.Peccary Project/IUCN/SSC Peccary Specialist GroupCampo GrandeBrazil
  4. 4.Programa de Pós Graduação em Zoologia, Instituto de Biociências, Departamento de Ecologia, Laboratório de Ecologia Espacial e Conservação (LEEC), Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP)Rio ClaroBrazil

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