Historical accounts documenting the presence of a species, despite several known spatial and temporal weaknesses, are useful to understand distribution patterns, to establish conservation baselines, and to develop effective conservation strategies. An article by Flueck et al. (2022), based on historical records, proposes to reinterpret the past distribution, population dynamics, and migratory behaviour of the huemul (Hippocamelus bisulcus), an endangered deer endemic of the southern Andes. Our analysis of the same historical data revealed a range of questionable interpretations of the sources. Because of this, we argue that the conservation strategies for huemul proposed by Flueck et al. (2022) may be counterproductive and even potentially harmful.
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