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Dust Bath in Southern Chile

March 28, 2016

Dust Bath in Southern Chile

- as seen by -

William G. Conway William G. Conway

Guanaco behaviors and youngster care are both elegant and fascinating.

Mother guanaco (Lama guanicöe) rolls delightedly in the thick white dust of Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia while her “chulengo” stands quietly under the watchful eye of a sis or auntie. Baby guanacos are almost insufferably adorable (awful word!), but that doesn’t keep them safe from furriers, save them from slaughter by sheep herders as grazing competitors, or from natural predators like pumas and coyote-like culpeos.

There may once have been 40,000,000 guanacos, almost as many as North American bison and pronghorn antelope. Today, there are thought to be about 450,000.

I used a Nikon D300s with a 80-400 zoom lens and sat hidden in a dense algarrobillo bush, which I discovered has very sharp thorns—but I can sit down now.

Nikon D300s, 400mm lens


, Chile Map It

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2 comments

Charly schwartz
March 26, 2020 at 10:01 pm

Dear Dr Conway.Just finished your book Act III.Magnificent book on conservation,biology and hope.My wife found your book by chance and bought it because I am interested in Patagonia .
Are you still giving conferences?
Would love to meet you one day.
Take care in these difficult times.

WCS Wild View
April 1, 2020 at 3:22 pm

Thanks so much for your kind thoughts on Dr. Conway’s work. Your note has been shared with him.