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Biologist discovers new giant wild pig species

by 5m Editor
5 November 2007, at 4:53pm

BRAZIL - A new species of giant wild pig has been discovered by a celebrated Dutch field biologist in the remote south eastern Amazon region of Brazil.

Although previously unknown to the wider world, the "giant peccary" – or Pecari maximus – has been for a long time, however, a familiar sight to natives on the basin of the Rio Aripuanã.

The giant peccary, or Pecari maximus

Skins and bones of the even-toed ungulate killed by local huntsmen came to the attention of Marc van Roosmalen while he was doing routine field surveys.

The Dutchman, a 20-year veteran of Amazonian naturalism, can now add another species to his long list of new-breed scalps.

In an illustrious career, van Roosmalen has discovered previously unknown types of monkey, marmoset and porcupine, including the colourfully-named Zog-Zog monkey, or genus Callicebus, and the shallow clear-water adapted Dwarf Manatee.

The size of a large dog, his latest porcine find is the largest peccary in the world, growing to a length of more than four feet and weighing almost twice as much as its cousin species living in the central Amazon rain forest.

It has now been confirmed to be a distinct species via a genetic analysis conducted by the Leiden Centre for Environmental Sciences in the Netherlands.

Source: The Telegraph

5m Editor