Coati Mundi at Iguazzu Falls

Coati mundi are small omnivores that are cousins of the raccoon.  I met this mother and son pair at a snack bar while hiking at Iquazzu Falls in Brazil.  Unfortunately, these animals have become dependent upon handouts from tourists.  They congregate around food stands begging for food.  The female below tried to grab an ice cream bar out of my friend’s hand.  They have totally lost their fear of humans, instead viewing people as vending machines for food.  In Argentina, the park officials posted signs warning people about the coati mundi.  If a tourist is bitten, they blame the person for ignoring the posted warnings instead of euthanizing the animal.  I wish the United States would take a lesson from these park managers.  Educate the people instead of punishing the animals. Scroll down to see the warning sign.   


Published by kristennelsondvm

Dr. Kristen Nelson grew up on a farm in Watertown, Minn., where she developed a deep love for animals of all kinds. She received a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine. Kris then completed a small-animal internship at the prestigious Animal Medical Center in New York City. In addition to writing and speaking, she cares for small and exotic animals in Scottsdale, Az. Dr. Nelson is widely quoted in the media. Her credits include Ladies’ Home Journal, USA TODAY, the Los Angeles Times and numerous radio and television interviews. Dr. Nelson has written two books, Coated With Fur: A Vet’s Life and Coated With Fur: A Blind Cat’s Love. Kris and her husband Steve share their home with rescued cats, birds and a dog.