The chief enemies of the guanaco are the Patagonian Indians and the puma, as it forms the principal food of both.
The water-courses and depressions of the shingly steppes afford pasturage sufficient for the guanaco, and in places support a thorny vegetation of low growth and starved appearance.
Of the indigenous fauna, the tapir of the north and the guanaco of the west and south are the largest of the animals.
The guanaco (Auchenia), which ranges from Tierra del Fuego to the Bolivian highlands, finds comparative safety in these uninhabitable solitudes, and is still numerous.
On the arid plateaus of the north-west, the guanaco and vicuna are still to be found, though less frequently, together with a smaller species of viscacha (Lagidium cuvieri).
The Carnivora include bears, wolverines, wolves, raccoons, foxes, sables, martens, skunks, kolinskis, fitch, fishers, ermines, cats, sea otters, fur seals, hair seals, lions, tigers, leopards, lynxes, jackals, &c. The Rodentia include beavers, nutrias, musk-rats or musquash, marmots, hamsters, chinchillas, hares, rabbits, squirrels, &c. The Ungulata include Persian, Astrachan, Crimean, Chinese and Tibet lambs, mouflon, guanaco, goats, ponies, &c. The Marsupialia include opossums, wallabies and kangaroos.
Guanaco.-Size 30 X15 in.
Vicuna is a species of long-necked sheep native to South America, bearing some resemblance to the guanaco, but the fur is shorter, closer and much finer.
A small number of very pretty guanaco and vicuna carriage rugs are imported into Europe, and many come through travellers and private sources, but generally they are so badly dressed that they are quite brittle upon the leather side.
A small deer and, in southern Ecuador, the llama (Auchenia) with its allied species, the alpaca, guanaco and vicuna, represent the ruminants.
Llamas are now confined to the western and southernmost parts of South America, though fossil remains have been found in the caves of Brazil, and in the pampas of the Argentine Republic.
The four species of indigenous South American wool-bearing animals are the llama, the alpaca, the guanaco and the vicuï¿½The llama and the alpaca are domesticated; the guanaco and the vicuna run wild.
The guanaco is supposed to be the original type, is the largest of the four, and has the greatest range from Peru to Tierra del Fuego.
The llama and alpaca were domesticated long before the discovery of America, but the guanaco and vicuña are found in a wild state only.
The slaughter of the guanaco and vicuña is rapidly diminishing their number.
In the main island of Tierra del Fuego, the low-lying plains with their rich growth of tall herbage are frequented by the rhea, guanaco and other animals common to the adjoining mainland.
Their life is nomadic, and they are hunters, living upon the flesh of the guanaco, and using only tussock-roots and wild celery for vegetable food.
GUANACO, sometimes spelt Huanaca, the larger of the two wild representatives in South America of the camel tribe; the other being the vicugna.
The guanaco (Lama huanacus), which stands nearly 4 ft.
Guanaco are found throughout the southern half of South America, from Peru in the north to Cape Horn in the south, but occur in greatest abundance in Patagonia.
Guanaco are readily domesticated, and in this state become very bold and will attack man, striking him from behind with both knees.
Guanaco also have favourite localities in which to die, as appears from the great heaps of their bones found in particular spots.
The llama (Lama huanacus glama) is a domesticated derivative of the wild guanaco, which has been bred as a beast of burden.
Chiefly found in southern Peru, it generally attains a larger size than the guanaco, and is usually white or spotted with brown or black, and sometimes altogether } black.