Collared Peccary (Javelina)
The Collared Peccary is also known as the Javelina. It gets its name of Collared Peccary from the distinctive collar around the neck of the animal. The name Javelina comes from the word javelin, which is a small sharp spear, and is believed to refer to the very sharp teeth that these creatures have. The Collared Peccary has a pig-like snout, a large head and shoulders and small legs with hoofed feet. It has grizzled gray and brown bristly fur. It has a collar of white or yellowish fur around its neck and small, straight tusks. It is two to three feet long and stands about one and a half feet to two feet tall. It has a musk gland at the top of its rump, which it uses to identify members of its group and to mark its territory. They weigh 35-60lb and have a shoulder height between20-24 inches and their body length, including their tail is 40-60 inches long. They weigh 35-60lb and have a shoulder height between20-24 inches and their body length, including their tail is 40-60 inches long Although the Collared Peccary resemble a small pig, and many of their habits are similar, they are not pigs.
The Collared Peccary lives in brushy desert areas, forests and rocky canyons. It is usually found near a water source. It can be found in southeastern Arizona, extreme southeastern and southwestern New Mexico and southwest Texas south to Argentina.
The Collared Peccary travels in herds looking for food like fruit, nuts, berries, cacti and grass. It will also dig in the ground for fungi, roots and bulbs. It occasionally eats insects, reptiles and amphibians. It is especially fond of agave and prickly pears and gets some of its water from these cacti.
The meat of the Collared Peccary tastes like a wilder version of pork.
During the summer, the Collared Peccary is active at night when the temperatures are cooler. It will bed down in the shade under a bush or boulders or in a cave to stay cool. In the winter, it is more active in the day and often beds down with other Collared Peccaries to stay warm. The Collared Peccary is a territorial animal and members of the group will defend their territory from other Peccaries. They chase off an intruder by laying back their ears and chattering their teeth. If that is not successful, they may charge head first at the intruder and bite it or even lock jaws with it. The Collared Peccary lives in herds of between 6-30 individuals. The dominant male of the herd mates with the females as they come into heat. If more than one female comes into heat at the same time, a subordinate male may mate with her. The Collared Peccary breeds throughout the year. The gestation period last for 140-150days before the female gives birth in a den or in a hollow log or a depression in the ground. She has to two to six young, but the average litter size is two. The young can travel with the herd a day after birth. They are weaned when they are two or three months old. Collared Peccary reach sexual maturity at the age of 2 years. The life expectancy of the Collared Peccary is 15 years or more.
Arizona Fish & Game
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