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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter November 30, 2020

Diet of Culpeo fox (Lycalopex culpaeus, Molina 1782): the role of non-native prey in a strongly seasonal environment of south-central Chile

  • Boris Castillo-Ravanal , Paulo Vallejos-Garrido and Enrique Rodríguez-Serrano ORCID logo EMAIL logo
From the journal Mammalia


In this study, we establish the seasonal variation of the Culpeo fox’s diet in a seasonal ecosystem of south-central Chile. By scat analyses, 21 prey taxa were identified, 16 were animal and five were plant species. Mammals (88.47%) were the main biomass contribution with small seasonal fluctuations. Plants contributed the most to the differences observed in all seasons since they showed very marked changes. We determined that the Culpeo fox inhabiting the Andes of south-central Chile feeds mainly on small non-native mammals all year round, and supplements its diet opportunistically from items whose abundance oscillates seasonally.

Corresponding author: Enrique Rodríguez-Serrano, Laboratorio de Mastozoología, Departamento de Zoología, Facultad de Ciencias Naturales y Oceanográficas, Universidad de Concepción, Barrio Universitario s/n, Casilla 160-C, Concepción, Chile, E-mail:

Funding source: Fondo Nacional de Desarrollo Científico y Tecnológico

Award Identifier / Grant number: 1170486


We thank MSc Tania Coronado and biologists M. Ignacia Concha, Natalia Monsalve, Juliett Erice and Jimena González for their help. Also, we appreciate the contribution made by two anonymous reviewers and the associate editor of Mammalia.

  1. Author contribution: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Researchfunding: The work was funded by FONDECYT 1170486.

  3. Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding this article.


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Received: 2019-11-23
Accepted: 2020-09-21
Published Online: 2020-11-30
Published in Print: 2021-03-26

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