Assessing the efficacy of hair snares as a method for noninvasive sampling of Neotropical felids

Tatiana P. Portella, Diego R. Bilski, Fernando C. Passos, Marcio R. Pie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Hair snares have been used in North and Central America for a long time in assessment and monitoring studies of several mammalian species. This method can provide a cheap, suitable, and efficient way to monitor mammals because it combines characteristics that are not present in most alternative techniques. However, despite their usefulness, hair snares are rarely used in other parts of the world. The aim of our study was to evaluate the effectiveness of hair snares and three scent lures (cinnamon, catnip, and vanilla) in the detection of felids in one of the largest remnants of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We performed tests with six captive felid species - Panthera onca (Linnaeus, 1758), Leopardus pardalis (Linnaeus, 1758), L. tigrinus (Schreber, 1775), L. wiedii (Schinz, 1821), Puma concolor (Linnaeus, 1771), and P. yagouaroundi (É. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1803) - to examine their responses to the attractants, and to correlate those with lure efficiency in the field. The field tests were conducted at the Parque Estadual Pico do Marumbi, state of Paraná, Brazil. Hair traps were placed on seven transects. There were equal numbers of traps with each scent lure, for a total of 1,551 trap-days. In captivity, vanilla provided the greatest response, yet no felids were detected in the field with any of the tested lures, although other species were recorded. Based on the sampling of non-target species, and the comparison with similar studies elsewhere, this study points to a possible caveat of this method when rare species or small populations are concerned. Meanwhile, we believe that improved hair snares could provide important results with several species in the location tested and others.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-54
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2013


  • Atlantic forest
  • Detection technique
  • Hair
  • Rubbing behavior
  • Scent lure


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