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Glimpse of the elusive endangered south Andean deer (Huemul)
Glimpse of the elusive endangered south Andean deer (Huemul)
Dez Bartelt

The possibility of observing the south Andean deer (Huemul). An endangered species and native to the mountains of Argentina and Chile The viability of the small remaining population is an magnificent triumph for anyone lucky to catch a glimpse of the elusive endangered creatures, for future viability of the small remaining population is an outstanding concern to many researchers. However viewing has increased during the last months in Estancia El Cóndor,in southern Patagonia, Argentina.

Jaime Smart, manager of the estancia, and the visitors saw a female one and her offspring. Afterwards, a male appeared. They keep calm and easy while grazing. The following day, the male showed up again and seemed to be addict to the cam! In the past, they were hunted by the men; now they are only hunted by tourist with cameras. The huemul is one the eight deers of Argentina and it is endangered specie. During the XX century, it was accused of being a plague and was harshly persecuted. That's why, every single time we watch it, we have an excuse to celebrate the good effort that is being made in this place in order to conserve the natural environment.

The Conservation Project
Huemules weight trough 40 and 100 kilos and reach the 165 centimeters high; for their particular appearance they are one of the most curious inhabitants of southern Patagonia, even though there are very few left. However, nature care plans as the one that Cielos Patagónicos SA is carrying out all over the 40000 hectares of Ea. El Cóndor really cooperate in the recuperation of native species. The aim of this conservation project is not only to prevent negative impact in these lands but also to recover what had been lost: these lands will be in their original state as long as this project goes by.

The project involves very definite actions: the banning of hunting, the red fox protection and Rosa rubiginosa (Sweet briar or Eglantine Rose) control. Also, what is very important, all the wild cattle was retired. This action had quickly visible effects: when eating, the cattle interrupted the natural cycle of flora and also competed with native hervibores. Nowadays, you can see all over the estancia the woods in their different process: the centenary trees but also the
All these actions allow the native species to recover their orginal landscape, so we hope huemules will show themselves more often in the near future.

Visiting estancia El Cóndor?
The estancia is located at the shores of San Martin Lake, 280 Km from El Calafate, Patagonia Argentina. The many inlets and peninsulas of the lake give an incredible view of the landscape, which colours depends on the sunlight and the height of your vantage point. Each glance is surprising.

The main house has 6 bedrooms and the maximum capacity is 14 persons. The house date back to 1912 and keeps the typical patagonian architecture. The warmth and spontaneity of the place and the hosts guarantee the guest to feel at home during his stay. A stay of 2- 4 night is recommended. A wilder option is to combine a stay at the estancia with "Expedition to La Nana", a three night's activity that gives the visitor the chance to admire the very incredible landscapes that the pioneer of the area enjoyed every morning.

Contact Info
+54 11 5272-0343



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