Protection of Endangered Species - Peru's National animal - The Vicuna

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Peace Corps Library: Conservation: Protection of Endangered Species - Peru's National animal - The Vicuna

By Stan Taft ( on Monday, January 26, 2009 - 1:13 pm: Edit Post

The Peace Corps participated with the World Wildlife Fund, Nature Conservancy and the Servicio Forestal y de Caza of Peru to establish a National Reserve in the Pampa Galeras, Department of Ayucucho for the Protection of the Vicuna. The wildlife preserve was established in the Community of Lucanas, two hours from Nazca toward Puquio. PCV Stan Taft PERU RCA, a Wildlife Management student at New Mexico State University, was assigned the duties of evaluating the area and recommending the boundaries for the preserve. The work began in 1965 and was completed in 1966. Stan was on the staff of the first Game Warden training class conducted in Nazca that trained eight men from Peru and six from Bolivia to protect the vicuna from extinction. The Pampa Galeras was the last remaining stronghold in Peru for this nobel and valuable natural resource and because of these efforts,remains today the site of much of the vicuna wool production in Peru. Vicuna are rounded up in July and sheared for their valuable wool which is sold on the world market. This was a true adventure in the purest sense. Stan survived a plane crash in the Andes that he had hired to help him make an aerial census of the vicuna in the Pampa Galeras region. He lived in an over sized pup tent tent for six months during the winter months and was always cold.

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