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Fri Dec 4, 2020, 05:43 AM

Fantastic beasts (and birds of Patagonia) and where to find them [View all]

Thursday, 03 Dec 2020 09:34 AM MYT

By Kenny Mah

Guanacos are probably the most commonly seen animal in Patagonia. — Pictures by CK Lim

TORRES DEL PAINE (Chile), Dec 3 — If you see no other animals in Patagonia, you will see a guanaco. Make that guanacos, plural. There’s never just one.

More than the breathtaking mountains, more than the beguilingly blue lakes, the guanaco is the mascot for Patagonia, especially the Chilean side here in wild, almost untamed Torres del Paine National Park.

Herds roam the grasslands in the thousands; though rightfully the collective noun for this southern cousin of the more famous llama is a pack, not a herd.

That word — “pack” — evokes a wilder imagery than a domesticated herd, and that is abundantly clear here as you wander around Patagonia. Wild imagery, and something deeper, older, calling you.


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