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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Animal Rescue VI: Collared Peccary

The javelina or collared peccary (Pecari tajacu) is called sahino in Spanish. It is native to much of Nicaragua, and in the wild, is to be feared. It can be aggressive, and has long, sharp teeth, strong jaws, a stout body with the capacity to run fast, and they are social, usually found in packs of around twelve. In some natural areas where they are common, picnic tables may be placed in strategic places for the visitor who might find a need for refuge. They are not commonly domesticated, because they often remain aggressive even when bred in captivity.

In 2003, Estacion Biologica inherited a rescue animal that the zoo could not keep. After living in an impoundment for years, he was released. He made friends with one of the dogs, and they played fondly. He was dubbed Greggery in honor of an opera composed by Frank Zappa. As all pets, he had his troubles, but with people he was never aggressive, and in time, his repulsive odor for which the peccaries are known diminished. Or perhaps we just didn't notice as much.
Greggery Peccary in Nicaragua

Much like the protagonist in Frank Zappa's operetta Greggery Peccary, our peccary became a star. He even had a video made and published! See the video below, thanks to Fabio Buitrago.

As cute as Greggery was (may he rest in peace), we think wild nature should stay wild. The pet trade threatens our wild nature in Nicaragua. Greggery was brought from the wild to be a pet, and was traded commercially for that purpose. When you see wild animals in the street, remember that buying them only promotes the trafficking in wild animals further.
wildlife photography Nicaragua
The head of the collared peccary seems disproportionately large. Photo by Jeffrey McCrary.

nature photography tourism Nicaragua
Greggery was good at charming the girls.
Collared peccary in Nicaragua
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