Vicuña

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Vicuña

VicuñaOriginal.jpg

Character Data
Also known as: Vicugna
Japanese Name: ビクーニャ
Romanised Name: Bikūnya
First Featured in: Kemono Friends (2015 Game)
Animal Data
Scientific Name: Vicugna vicugna
Distribution: South America
Diet: Herbivore
Average Lifespan in the Wild: 20 years
Read More: Vicuña
Conservation Status: Status iucn3.1 LC.svg.png
Vicuña Nexon Game

Vicuña is a Mammalia Friend that appeared in the original Kemono Friends mobile game.

Appearance

Vicuña has long straight brownish hair that reaches at least below the shoulder blades with part of it cut to about eyes-length and a front fringe between the eyes. She wears a white bowtie. Her skin is pale and her eyes red. Around her neck, she carries a long brown scarf that may be related to the long neck of the original animal she belongs to. She wears a sleeveless white shirt hidden by a white fluffy sweater, a short red circular skirt with pressed-in ridges surrounded by a crown of white fur, full-length gloves and tights and white boots. Like the real animal, she bears the ears and tail of the vicuña.

In Real Life

Vicuña (Vicugna vicugna)

The vicuña is considered to be a wild type of Camelid. They are very closely related to both Llamas and Alpacas. They produce wool that is very fine. This can also be very expensive because the animals can only have their wool removed every 3 years. This animal is the National symbol of Peru and appears on the Coat of arms of Peru. The vicuña is the smallest living species among the family Camelidae. A slender body and relatively long neck and limbs give a vicuña an elegant appearance

Vicuña distribution is restricted to the Puna and Altoandina biogeographical provinces at altitudes of 3,200 to 4,800 m. Its habitat consists mainly of six different vegetation types. While vicuña territories include wetlands, they are often located near hillsides. It has been reported that vicuña use steep slopes as a means of escaping from some predators, and that they use dry areas on "moderate slopes, well downhill from ridge tops" as places to spend the night. Additionally the bases of slopes are often good places for grazing because the soil there is deeper and moister than soils up on the slope.

The vicuña is strictly a grazer. The grassy plains serve as the feeding locations for the vicuña. They eat the grass that is very low to the ground. What they feed on is in clumps and often it is what other animals have left behind. They do move around often as they eat and that prevents problems with areas being over grazed. The grassy plains serve as the feeding locations for the vicuña. They eat the grass that is very low to the ground. What they feed on is in clumps and often it is what other animals have left behind. They do move around often as they eat and that prevents problems with areas being over grazed. They are often seen licking rocks to get enough salt. They will also consume salt water. Unlike most other camelids, the vicuña requires daily intake of water. Therefore, when selecting a territory, it searches an area with favorable watering sites.

The vicuña is very graceful in its movement. During the day they are on the plains but at night they move into the slopes of the Andes. Vicuñas are alert and shy animals that flee very rapidly. They are capable of running 47 km/hr at an elevation of 4,500 meters. They listen well to their surroundings. By doing so they are alerted to any threats or problems in their environment. They are able to live in the cold night time temperatures even though their wool is very thin. Their bodies allow them to trap heat from the sunlight during the day to their skin and that keeps them warm through the night.

Vicuñas are highly communicative, signaling one another with body postures, ear and tail placement, and numerous other subtle movements. Their vocalizations include an alarm call a high pitched whinny that alerts the herd to danger. They also emit a soft humming sound to signal bonding or greeting and a range of guttural sounds that communicate anger and fear.

In 1974 the vicuña was considered in very serious danger of becoming extinct. There were only about 6,000 of them left. The vicuña was one of the most threatened species in South America. Due to the over-hunting only a few thousand individuals existed. The implementation of the Vicuña Convention was fundamental in the recovery of the species. Thanks to conservation efforts though their numbers have increased. Today there are about 350,000 of them in the wild so they are no longer considered to be at risk. Local communities participate on the entire process of management and conservation of the populations and use of the sheared wool. The responsible authority is the CONACS (National Council on South American Camelids) and the local communities.

Trivia

Vicuña (Vicugna vicugna)
  • These animals grow up to 1.6 metres long, making them the smallest member of the camelid family.
  • Prices for vicuña wool can range from US$1,800 to US$3,000 per yard.

References

1. "Vicugna vicugna" Animal Diversity Web (ADW).

2. "VICUÑA – VICUGNA" Bio Expedition.

3. "Vicugna vicugna". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature].

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