Campo Troupial - Icterus jamacaii
Brown Capuchin Monkey - Cebus apella
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Mãe-da-lua
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in Itapajé, Ceará,
100 km from Fortaleza.
Presentation
Mammals

The avifauna is listed in
Birds of NE Brazil.
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Threatened species
Many species of NE Brazil are threatened by extinction. Our reserve helps to protect some of them:
Birds of NE Brazil
in Caatinga, Cerrado,
and other habitats
Mammals of Mãe-da-lua reserve
by Hermann Redies

This is a preliminary, brief account of the mammals I saw in Mãe-da-lua private reserve, Itapajé, Ceará, from 2006 to 2011. When photos are available, then the species name is underlined, and a page with details ("species page") can be accessed by clicking on the name.

For species identification, I consulted Eisenberg and Redford 1999, Von Ihering 2002, and others, as cited in the text.

Please respect my copyright.




Marsupialia: The opossum Didelphis albiventris, locally known as "cassaco", was registered repeatedly in our RPPN. This opossum is quite common in Ceará.

A mouse-opossum (Eisenberg and Redford 1999, p. 57) was encountered in Mãe-da-lua reserve. See here for details of this little animal, which I could not identify to genus or species level. Possibly, we have more species of mouse opossum, and similar marsurpials. Locally, these animals are knows as "catitas".

Xenarthra: Among the Edentata, we have the anteater Tamandua tetradactyla, which reportedly does not only eat ants and termites, but also bird eggs (Von Ihering 2002); and at least two Armadillo species, namely the Six-banded Armadillo Euphractus sexcinctus ("peba") and another species with the brazilian name "tatu".

Chiroptera: There are also various bat species, among them vampire bats. The latter attack not only large animals like horses (they repeatedly sucked blood from my horse) and cattle, but apparently also large birds like domestic chicken. Presumably, they could be a danger for our guan population (Sick 1997, p. 275).

Primates: Two primate species are rather common in the reserve, namely the marmoset Callithrix jacchus and the Brown Capuchin monkey Cebus apella.

Carnivora: Until 2009, there were many foxes (Cerdocyon thous) around, and I saw a fox or two nearly every time I went for a walk through the reserve. However, in 2010, their numbers decreased, possibly due to some disease, and at present, foxes are rare.

Two species of wild cats live here. One is Felis yagouaroundi, the "Gato mourisco". At the end of 2007 and beginning of 2008, I have repeatedly seen an adult cat (presumably a female) followed by 3 youngs. The other species has the size of a domestic cat and the colors of a jaguar (yellow with black spots); this is Leopardus tigrinus, threatened by extinction according to IBAMA 2003. The locals call it "gato maracajá" or "gato pintado".

Another carnivore is the racoon Procyon cancrivorus, whose characteristic footprints can frequently be seen.

The Hog-nosed Skunk Conepatus semistriatus was observed on one occasion. Older habitants of the region confirmed that in past times, this species was ocasionally seen. On the other hand, none of the younger people I asked, knew about it.

Artiodactyla: According to the older residents of the area, deers were common in Serra das Vertentes until a few decades ago, but hunting nearly exterminated these animals. Since we founded the reserve, their numbers seem to have recovered a little, and I have seen deer even close to my house. The species could be Mazama gouazoubira, the Gray Brocket. However, I am not certain about the ID.

Rodentia: The most visible rodent species is the preá.

Another rodent is the punaré Thrichomys apereoides. It was once very common in the reserve, but hunting has reduced the population greatly. The mocó Kerodon rupestris appears to have been present in the past, and it might still be there, but I have not yet seen it in the reserve.

The meat of these three rodent species, preá, punaré and mocó, is often sold at the market in Itapajé.

They are probably several mouse species of the family Muridae in Mãe-da-lua, but I have only one documented register, namely Wiedomys pyrrhorhinos.

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