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Elusive animals caught on camera

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Forget YouTube or reality TV - this is where candid cameras really come into their own. The first ever global camera-trap survey of mammals has revealed rare glimpses of various seldom-seen animals in their natural habitats. The study, carried out Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network (TEAM) at Conservation International, recorded 105 species in seven protected areas across the Americas, Africa and Asia. Footage taken over a four-year period provided intimate portraits of endangered elephants, jaguars, cougars, gorillas and more - but also highlighted the devastating impact of habitat loss and smaller reserves on these species.

Take a look at these rare, amazing images in the gallery below - simply click an image to open.

Picture credits: Conservation International Suriname as part of the TEAM Network Partnership.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An ocelot (Leopardus pardalis) holds the camera's gaze in Volcan Barva, Costa Rica.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An endangered mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) and her infant relax in the foliage of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Uganda.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An African leopard (Panthera pardus) pauses for a moment in front of a camera in the Udzungwa Mountains National Park of Tanzania.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An African elephant (Loxodonta africana) is captured wandering by, also in Tanzania's Udzungwa Mountains National Park.

    This was the largest animal photographed in the global camera trap mammal study, weighing 3,940 kg.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    White-lipped pecari (Tayassu pecari) gather round the camera in the Central Suriname Nature Reserve, South America.

    Of the sites researched, this one presented the highest number of species diversity (28 in total).

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    The endangered chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) poses for his close-up in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest of Uganda.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) inspects the camera trap in Tanzania's Udzungwa Mountains National Park.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A southern pig-tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina) seems captivated by the camera equipment in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, Indonesia.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An Indian Muntjak (Muntiacus muntjak) is fleetingly captured in Nam Kading National Protected Area in Laos.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A small African carnivore known as Lowe's Servaline Genet embarks on a nocturnal search for food in Tanzania's Udzungwa Mountains National Park.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A Northern tamandua (Tamandua mexicana) - a smaller breed of anteater - is photographed in Volcan Barva, Costa Rica.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A Baird's Tapir (Tapirus bairdii) is a very rare and endangered breed of tapir native to Central and South America.

    This one was documented by the study in Volcan Barva, Costa Rica.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A cougar (Puma concolor), pictured in Volcan Barva, Costa Rica.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A South American Tapir (Tapirus terrestris) sniffs out the camera in the Central Suriname Nature Reserve of South America.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A Linnaeus's mouse opossum (Marmosa murina) is just seen through the foliage of the Central Suriname Nature Reserve of South America.

    This was the smallest animal photographed, weighing in around 26 g.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    An elusive jaguar (Panthera Onca) is caught in incredible close-up detail at the Central Suriname Nature Reserve of South America.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A South America Tapir (Tapirus terrestris) photographed in Manaus, Brazil.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    A Lowland paca (Cuniculus paca) - a large type of rodent found in Central and South America - is pictured in Manaus, Brazil.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    In a poignant symbol of the threats facing endangered mammals everywhere today, a poacher is also caught by the camera trap study, in Nam Kading National Park, Laos.

  • Mammals Caught On Camera

    Technicians with the Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network install a camera trap in Volcan Barva, Costa Rica.

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