Crab-eating raccoon

The crab-eating raccoon or South American raccoon (Procyon cancrivorus) is a species of raccoon native to marshy and jungle areas of Central and South America (including Trinidad and Tobago). It is found from Costa Rica south through most areas of South America east of the Andes down to northern Argentina and Uruguay.[1] That it is called the crab-eating raccoon does not mean that only this species eats crabs, as the common raccoon also seeks and eats crabs where they are available.

The crab-eating raccoon eats crab, lobster, crayfish and other crustaceans and shellfish, such as oysters and clams. It is an omnivore and its diet also includes, for example, small amphibians, turtle eggs, and fruits. It resembles its northern cousin, the common raccoon, in having a bushy ringed tail and "bandit mask" of fur around its eyes. Unlike the common raccoon, the hair on the nape of the neck points towards the head, rather than backward.[2] The crab-eating raccoon also appears to be more adapted to an arboreal lifestyle than the common raccoon, with sharper, narrower claws. It also is better adapted for a diet of hard-shelled food, with most of the cheek teeth being larger than those of the common raccoon, with broader, rounded cusps. Although the crab-eating raccoon can appear smaller and more streamlined than the common raccoon due to its much shorter fur and more gracile build, the crab-eating raccoon is of similar dimensions to the northern species. Head and body length is 41 to 80 cm (16 to 31 in), tail length is 20 to 56 cm (8 to 22 in) and height at the shoulder is about 23 cm (9 in). Weights can range from 2 to 12 kg (4 to 26 lb), though are mostly between 5 and 7 kg (11 and 15 lb).[3] Males are usually larger than the females.

Crab-eating raccoon
Mano pelada (Procyon cancrivorus nigripes)
in Reserva de Fauna Carmelo, Uruguay
Scientific classification
Kingdom:
Phylum:
Class:
Order:
Family:
Genus:
Species:
P. cancrivorus
Binomial name
Procyon cancrivorus
(Cuvier, 1798)
Subspecies
  • P. c. cancrivorus
  • P. c. aequatorialis
  • P. c. nigripes
  • P. c. panamensis
Crab-eating Raccoon area
Crab-eating raccoon range

Behavior

The crab-eating raccoon is solitary and nocturnal, primarily terrestrial but will spend a significant amount of time in trees. It is almost always found near streams, lakes, and rivers. In Panama and Costa Rica, where it is sympatric with the common raccoon, it will be strictly found in inland rivers and streams, while the common raccoon lives in mangrove forests. Less frequently, it will reside in evergreen forests or the plains, but are only rarely found in rainforests.[2] Compared to the common raccoon, which thrives in urban environments and adapts quickly to the presence of humans, the crab-eating raccoon adapts less easily and is much less likely to be found in human environments.

Reproduction

The crab-eating raccoon breeds between July and September, and gestation lasts between 60 and 73 days. Offspring are born in crevices, hollow trees, or abandoned nests from other creatures. Between 2 and 7 kits are born, with 3 being the average. While typically crab-eating raccoons only breed once per year, if a female loses all her kits early in the season, they will mate again and have a second litter. Males have no part in raising young, and while attending to young, females will become much more territorial and will not tolerate other raccoons around them.[4]

Gallery

Raccoons of North & Middle America (1950) Skins of subgenera procyon & euprocyon

Skins of a common raccoon (left) and crab-eating raccoon (right).

Raccoons of North & Middle America (1950) P. lotor & P. cancrivorus

Skulls of a common raccoon (left) and crab-eating raccoon (right).

Szop rakojad

With brown coat and a much smaller facial mask

References

  1. ^ a b Reid, F. & Helgen, K. (2008). "Procyon cancrivorus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 January 2009.
  2. ^ a b Zeveloff, Samuel (2002). Raccoons: a natural history. Smithsonian Books. ISBN 978-1588340337.
  3. ^ Burnie D and Wilson DE (Eds.), Animal: The Definitive Visual Guide to the World's Wildlife. DK Adult (2005), ISBN 0789477645
  4. ^ "Procyon cancrivorus". Animal Diversity Web. Retrieved 25 May 2013.

External links

Arenillas Ecological Reserve

Arenillas Ecological Reserve (Spanish: Reserva Ecológica Arenillas) is a 17,083-hectare (42,210-acre) protected area in Ecuador situated in the El Oro Province, in the Arenillas Canton and in the Huaquillas Canton.

Known mammals in the reserve, according to a 1993 study include the Sechuran fox (Lycalopex sechurae), the nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus), Robinson's mouse opossum (Marmosa robinsoni), the Pacific spiny-rat (Proechimys decumamus), the jaguarundi (Puma yagouaroundi), the tayra (Eira barbara), the greater bulldog bat, the common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus), the crab-eating raccoon (Procyon cancrivorus) and the Guayaquil squirrel (Sciurus stramineus). There are also 153 species of birds of which 35% are endemic. The reserve is a BirdLife International IBA with the following endangered birds: grey-cheeked parakeet (Brotogeris pyrrhoptera), slaty becard (Pachyramphus spodiurus), and blackish-headed spinetail (Synallaxis tithys).The region is managed by the ministry of defense and visitors must get permission from them to visit the area.

Bassaricyon

The genus Bassaricyon consists of small Neotropical procyonids, popularly known as olingos . They are native to the rainforests of Central and South America from Nicaragua to Peru. They are arboreal and nocturnal, and live at elevations from sea level to 2,750 m. Olingos closely resemble the kinkajou in morphology and habits, though they lack prehensile tails and extrudable tongues, have more extended muzzles, and possess anal scent glands. They also resemble galagos and certain lemurs, which are primates.

Genetic studies have shown that the closest relatives of the olingos are actually the coatis; the divergence between the two groups is estimated to have occurred about 10.2 million years (Ma) ago during the Tortonian age, while kinkajous split off from the other extant procyonids about 22.6 Ma ago during the Aquitanian age. The similarities between kinkajous and olingos are thus an example of parallel evolution.

Bassariscus

Bassariscus is a genus in the family Procyonidae. There are two species in the genus: the ring-tailed cat or ringtail (B. astutus) and the cacomistle (B. sumichrasti). Genetic studies have indicated that the closest relatives of Bassariscus are raccoons, from which they diverged about 10 million years ago. The two lineages of Bassariscus are thought to have separated after only another two million years, making it the extant procyonid genus with the earliest diversification.

The name is a Greek word for fox ("bassaris") with a Latinized diminutive ending ("-iscus"). The genus was first described by Elliott Coues in 1887. He proposed the word "bassarisk" as the English term for animals in this genus. Its habitat includes semi-arid areas in the southwestern United States, the whole of Mexico, as well as moist tropical forests in Central America.

Cacomistle

The cacomistle, Bassariscus sumichrasti, is a nocturnal, arboreal and omnivorous member of the carnivoran family Procyonidae. Its preferred habitats are wet, tropical, evergreen woodlands and mountain forests, though seasonally it will venture into drier deciduous forests.

Nowhere in its range (from southern Mexico to western Panama) is B. sumichrasti common. This is especially true in Costa Rica, where it inhabits only a very small area. It is completely dependent on forest habitat, making it particularly susceptible to deforestation.

The term cacomistle is from the Nahuatl language (tlahcomiztli) and means "half cat" or "half mountain lion"; it is sometimes also used to refer to the ringtail, Bassariscus astutus, a similar species that inhabits arid northern Mexico and the American Southwest.

Cozumel raccoon

The Cozumel raccoon (Procyon pygmaeus), also called the pygmy raccoon, is a critically endangered species of island raccoon endemic on Cozumel Island off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico.Other common names for the Cozumel raccoon include dwarf raccoon, Cozumel Island raccoon, and Cozumel raccoon bear.

Crabeater

A crabeater is an animal species that feeds on crabs. It may refer to:

Cobia, a species of fish which also is commonly called crabeater

Crabeater seal, a species of seal

Crabeater gull, also known as Olrog's gull

Crab-eating fox, a canid species

Crab-eating raccoon, a raccoon species

Crab-eating mongoose, a mongoose species

Crab-plover, a shorebird species

Crab-eating frog, a frog species

Fordonia leucobalia, also known as crab-eating water snake

Crab-eating macaque, a simian species

Fox dog

Fox dog is a name given by some naturalists to wild dogs of South America with a fox-like appearance. Among them are:

Atelocynus microtis (the short-eared dog of Brazil)

Cerdocyon thous azarae (zono, or Azara's dog; a variety of the crab-eating fox)

Lycalopex vetulus (the hoary fox of Brazil)

Procyon cancrivorus (crab-eating raccoon)

Guadeloupe raccoon

The Guadeloupe raccoon (Procyon lotor minor) is a common raccoon endemic on the two main islands Basse-Terre Island and Grande-Terre of Guadeloupe in the Lesser Antilles.

Manglares de Tumbes National Sanctuary

Manglares de Tumbes National Sanctuary is a protected natural area located in the region of Tumbes, Peru. Established in 1988, it protects the largest area of mangrove forest in Peru.

Nasua

Nasua is a genus of coatis of the family Procyonidae. Two additional species of coatis, commonly known as mountain coatis, are placed in the genus Nasuella.

Nasuella

Mountain coatis are two species of procyonid mammals from the genus Nasuella. Unlike the larger coatis from the genus Nasua, mountain coatis only weigh 1.0–1.5 kilograms (2.2–3.3 lb) and are endemic to the north Andean highlands in South America.

Nasuella meridensis

The eastern mountain coati or eastern dwarf coati (Nasuella meridensis) is a small procyonid found in cloud forest and páramo at altitudes of 2,000–4,000 metres (6,600–13,100 ft) in the Andes of western Venezuela. Until 2009, it was usually included as a subspecies of the western mountain coati, but the eastern mountain coati is overall smaller, somewhat shorter-tailed on average, has markedly smaller teeth, a paler olive-brown pelage, and usually a dark mid-dorsal stripe on the back (versus more rufescent or blackish, and usually without a dark mid-dorsal stripe in the western mountain coati). When the two were combined, they were rated as Data Deficient by the IUCN, but following the split the eastern mountain coati is considered endangered.

Northern olingo

The northern olingo (Bassaricyon gabbii), also known as the bushy-tailed olingo or as simply the olingo (due to it being the most commonly seen of the species), is a tree-dwelling member of the family Procyonidae, which also includes raccoons. It was the first species of olingo to be described, and while it is considered by some authors to be the only genuine olingo species, a recent review of the Bassaricyon genus has shown that there are a total of four olingo species, although two of the former species should now be considered as a part of this species. Its scientific name honors William More Gabb, who collected the first specimen. It is native to Central America.

Olinguito

The olinguito , Bassaricyon neblina, is a mammal of the raccoon family Procyonidae that lives in montane forests in the Andes of western Colombia and Ecuador. The species was described as new in 2013. The species name neblina is Spanish for fog or mist, referring to the cloud forest habitat of the olinguito.On 22 May 2014 the International Institute for Species Exploration declared the olinguito as one of the "Top 10 New Species of 2014" among species discovered in 2013. It is the first new carnivoran mammal described in the Western Hemisphere in 35 years.

Procyon (genus)

Procyon is a genus of nocturnal mammals, comprising three species commonly known as raccoons, in the family Procyonidae. The most familiar species, the common raccoon (P. lotor), is often known simply as "the" raccoon, as the two other raccoon species in the genus are native only to the tropics and less well known. Genetic studies have shown that the closest relatives of raccoons are the ring-tailed cats and cacomistles of genus Bassariscus, from which they diverged about 10 million years ago.

Procyonidae

Procyonidae is a New World family of the order Carnivora. It comprises the raccoons, coatis, kinkajous, olingos, olinguitos, ringtails, and cacomistles. Procyonids inhabit a wide range of environments and are generally omnivorous.

South American coati

The South American coati or ring-tailed coati (Nasua nasua) is a species of coati and a member of the raccoon family (Procyonidae), from tropical and subtropical South America. In Brazilian Portuguese, it is known as quati. An adult generally weighs 2–7.2 kg (4.4–15.9 lb) and is 85–113 cm (33–44 in) long, with half of that being its tail. Its color is highly variable and the rings on the tail may be only somewhat visible, but its distinguishing characteristic is that it lacks the largely white snout (or "nose") of its northern relative, the white-nosed coati.

The Drunken Forest

First published in 1956, The Drunken Forest is an account of a six-month trip Gerald Durrell made with his wife Jacquie to South America (Argentina and Paraguay) in 1954.

Western lowland olingo

The western lowland olingo (Bassaricyon medius) is a species of olingo from Central and South America, where it is known from Panama and from Colombia and Ecuador west of the Andes.

Extant species of family Procyonidae
Procyoninae
Potosinae
Extant Carnivora species

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