The Giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla)—the largest and most terrestrial anteater species—is easily recognizable by its elongated, tubular snout, bushy tail, and large fore claws, which it uses to dig up ants and termites before collecting them with its long sticky tongue. The large, insectivorous mammal has a wide distribution through Central and South America, ranging from Honduras to northern Argentina, and is found in a diversity of habitats, including tropical rainforest, flooded grasslands and xeric scrublands. Unfortunately, the Giant anteater has suffered extensive population declines due to habitat loss, illegal hunting, and human –related impacts. For this reason, the IUCN lists the Giant anteater as Vulnerable to extinction.
Long-term research and monitoring studies in biomes like the Brazilian Pantanal—a population stronghold for the Giant anteater—and the Cerrado, where grassland habitat is being rapidly converted for industrial agriculture, have been identified as conservation priorities for the species. To address these challenges, ZCOG has partnered with researchers from the Giant Armadillo Conservation Project (GACP) to conduct a multi-year ecological and monitoring study of Giant anteaters in the Brazilian Pantanal. ZCOG and supports this long-term research and conservation initiative by providing GPS and radio telemetry harnesses for use in monitoring studies and serving as the program's North American fundraising, financial management and logistical administrative agency.
Photos courtesy of the Giant Armadillo Conservation Project
HELP PROTECT GIANT ANTEATERS!
FROM THE FIELD
Click on the below-listed links to learn more about the Giant Anteater Conservation Monitoring Project.
Field video: Giant Anteater foraging for termites.
Field video: Giant Anteater at Baia das Pedras Ranch.
HOW TO HELP
Funding is needed to support Giant Anteater monitoring in the Brazilian Pantanal, and you can help make a difference!
DONATE NOW. Your contribution will be used to help purchase camera traps, radio telemetry harnesses and field equipment needed to advance Giant Anteater research and monitoring activities in the Brazilian Pantanal.
Encourage your zoo to dedicate a Quarters for Conservation kiosk to raise funds for the Giant Anteater conservation. CLICK HERE to learn how facilities like the Greenville Zoo are already contributing to ZCOG conservation programs in this manner.
Raise funds for Giant Anteater conservation by shopping at Amazon.com
Simpy use the ZCOG link to access the AmazonSmile program and a portion of your purchase will be donated to help promote Giant Anteater conservation. It's easy, it's free and it helps protect the species and its habitat!