South Peru to Tierra del Fuego (Southern tip of South America)
(Herbivore) In the wild -grasses, succulent vegetation; In the Zoo - grasses, grains.
Semi-desert areas from sea level up to 13,000 ft (3,965 m) in the Andes Mountains of South America.
Guanacos are the tallest of all wild South American mammals, 43 in. (109 cm) high. Overall they are brown in color.
DID YOU KNOW?
The llama was domesticated from the guanaco, a South American member of the camel family. They live in small herds of 4-10 females led by 1 male. Alternative herds are made up only of males, young and old, containing up to 25 individuals. Guanacos are extremely aggressive during the mating season: males fight each other by trying to bite their opponents' front legs. They also kick with their forefeet and spit. People in South America may trap wild herds, shear the wool and release the animals again. The wool is spun into clothing and blankets.
MORE ABOUT OUR ANIMALS:
We have a male guanaco named Einstein born on July 17, 2010 and a female named Chile born on June 1, 2002. Both arrived at the El Paso Zoo from the Tautphaus Park Zoo in Idaho Falls, Idaho on October 15, 2011.
HOW CAN YOU GET INVOLVED IN CONSERVATION EFFORTS:
Read about guanacos online and check out books from your local library. Become a member of the El Paso Zoological Society. Funds raised by the Society are used to support conservation efforts at the Zoo and in the wild.
JUST FOR KIDS:
Our guanacos live in a mixed species habitat with other animals from South America. For a fun family activity see if you can find other animals in their exhibit including a yellow-footed tortoise (during the warmer months), capybara, crested screamers and Patagonian hare.