Pecari – Collared peccary

Suffering from poorly developed vision, they heavily rely on vocalization to communicate

A fascinating and adaptable species native to the Americas, ranging from the Southwestern United States through Central America and into South America as far as northern Argentina. This wide distribution is a testament to their adaptability to various habitats, including arid deserts, dense forests, and tropical rainforests. The common name “collared peccary” derives from the distinctive white or yellowish collar of fur encircling their necks, setting them apart visually from other peccary species.

Their overall appearance is characterized by a robust body covered in bristly, grizzled gray and brown fur, which gives them a somewhat rugged look. Despite their small and stout stature, collared peccaries are far from defenseless. They can become quite formidable when threatened, especially when they band together as a group, or “horde,” to defend against predators. This social structure is a key aspect of their survival strategy, allowing them to protect each other and their young from threats in the wild.

Collared peccaries are omnivorous, with a diet that reflects the resources available in their diverse habitats. Primarily herbivorous, they feast on a variety of foods, including mesquite beans, palm nuts, various cacti, fruits, tubers, and a broad range of green vegetation. This diet is supplemented by occasional opportunistic consumption of small animals such as rodents, lizards, and carrion, including dead birds. This varied diet helps the collared peccary thrive in environments where food sources can be scarce or seasonal.

The behavior of the collared peccary varies with the seasons, demonstrating their adaptability to changing conditions. In the hotter summer months, they become nocturnal to avoid the extreme heat, actively foraging for food and water during the cooler nighttime hours. Conversely, in the winter, they shift their active periods to the daytime, taking advantage of the milder temperatures to search for food and socialize.