Trigo, T. C., Tirelli, F. P., Machado, L. F., Peters, F. B., Indrusiak, C. B., Mazim, F. D., Sana, D., Eizirik, E., & Freitas, T. R. O. (2013). Geographic distribution and food habits of Leopardus tigrinus and L. geoffroyi (Carnivora, Felidae) at their geographic contact zone in southern Brazil. Studies on Neotropical Fauna and Environment, 48(1), 56–67.

Ano de publicação: 2013

The objective of this study is to define the geographic distribution of Leopardus tigrinus and L. geoffroyi in one of the few regions of South America where they co-occur, the state of Rio Grande do Sul (RS), in southernmost Brazil. We compiled 133 records for both species and constructed a distribution map, which shows sharp geographic segregation between them. Leopardus tigrinus was found to be associated more with forested ecoregions in the northern part of the state, while L. geoffroyi records were mainly associated with open habitats of the Pampas biome in southern RS. We present data on the diet of these two species that indicate trophic niche separation between them in this region of geographic contact. Our results thus suggest that these species exhibit ecological partitioning with respect to habitat and prey, and that these factors may influence the observed pattern of limited spatial overlap in this region.

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