Revista del Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales
versión On-line ISSN 1853-0400
DEL MORAL, J. Fernando y BRACHO, Andrés E.. Indirect evidence on the presence of the Andean bear (Tremarctos ornatus Cuvier, 1825) in northwestern Argentina. Rev. Mus. Argent. Cienc. Nat. [online]. 2009, vol.11, n.1, pp. 69-76. ISSN 1853-0400.
The presence of Andean bears (Tremarctos ornatus) in Argentina has been disputed due to the absence of confirming evidence. Many Andean bear experts currently doubt on their presence in this country. Nevertheless, the Tucuman-Bolivian Forest or Yungas is a typical ecosystem where this species can be found, particularly in the studied area, in which the habitat appears to be of high quality for bears. Between 2001 and 2006, 23 cases of evidence on the presence of Andean bears in the provinces of Salta and Jujuy were recorded. Footprints, food remains and scats were found. In addition, natives, farmers, and hunters where interviewed to collect new data of this species. The conclusion is that the Yungas Forest of northwestern Argentina must be considered an area with high probability of maintaining a resident population of Andean bears. Although this is probably a small and perhaps isolated population, the permanent presence of Andean bears in northwestern Argentina might not longer be doubted.
Palabras clave : Andean bear; Tremarctos ornatus; Distribution; Yungas forest; Argentina.