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Last updated on April 23, 2014 at 1:22 EDT

Patagonian Weasel, Lyncodon patagonicus

The Patagonian weasel (Lyncodon patagonicus) is the sole member of its genus Lyncodon. Its range includes areas of Chile, western Argentina, and the Pampas. It prefers a habitat within xerophytic woodlands and shrub steppes.

The Patagonian weasel can reach an average body length between 11.8 and 13.8, with a tail length between 2.4 and 3.5 inches. Its fur is mostly white, with brown and black mixed in. Its legs and ears are short and its tail is bushy. There is not much information regarding the habits of this weasel, but it is thought to consume rodents and birds, and is most likely active during the day and night.

It is thought that the main threats to the Patagonian weasel are habitat destruction and occasional hunting, but these are not perceived to be dangerous to overall population numbers. Although it is rare and occurs in low concentrations across its range, it is reported to be locally common and may even occur in a few protected areas. More information is needed about this species and its habits before any conservation efforts can be successful. The Patagonian weasel appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Data Deficient.”

Image Caption: Lyncodon patagonicus – Patagonian Weasel – Museum of Patagonia – San Carlos de Bariloche Argentina. Credit: Butterfly voyages – Serge Ouachée/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Patagonian Weasel Lyncodon patagonicus