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Food habits of anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla Linnaeus, 1758) in Cerrado remaining in the State of São Paulo, Brazil

Grant number: 16/22289-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2017
Effective date (End): May 02, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Applied Zoology
Principal researcher:Rita de Cassia Bianchi
Grantee:Daiana Jeronimo Polli
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias e Veterinárias (FCAV). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Jaboticabal. Jaboticabal , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):17/26696-2 - Giant anteater diet analysis: which percentage of scats must be analyzed?, BE.EP.IC


The extensive human occupation in different habitat types has contributed to the degradation and fragmentation of natural habitat, forest fires, roadkill and hunting of wildlife. These factors together with the low reproductive rate, long period of parental care and large area required have been causing reduction of the population density and distribution area of giant anteaters. Considering the biodiversity conservation status in São Paulo state and the specie classification as vulnerable to extinction, studies involving giant anteaters in one of the few remnants of Cerrado and Forest Semideciduous (Ecological Station of Santa Barbara) of the state become priority to the specie conservation. Despite being a specialist feed on ants and termites, there is no much information about which species are frequently consumed. Thus, the objective of the present study is to describe the diet from the feces analysis method. This is the first study conducted about diet of the giant anteater in São Paulo. Considering the giant anteater conservation status in São Paulo state and considering the condition of many areas of the state, especially the Cerrado, this study will shed light on the basic biology of an endangered specie and will help to understand how a specialist specie use the food resources in a natural area and its surroundings anthropized with Pinus spp., Eucalyptus spp., sugar cane and pasture. Key words: anthropic, analysis of feces, Cerrado, frequency of occurrence, dietary habits, myrmecophagy. (AU)

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