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Just back from the Pantanal ... first time ever seeing wild Jaguars :) This is Mick Jaguar - the pirate of the Pantanal.

 

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@@cheetah80

Great picture! I am glad to see he is doing well - (I didn't know the name) - he is the same jaguar as that in the last few of my pictures- recognisable by the damaged eye

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Thank you @@TonyQ your photos are wonderful too - they were one of my inspirations to visit the Pantanal in the first place ;-) Yes Mick Jaguar is doing very well - I dare to say he was also looking a bit fat :) I believe he is also known as Corsario (Pirate in Portuguese) but many local guides despise the practice of naming the jaguars so they are not very forthcoming with telling their guests who the jaguar is.

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@@cheetah80

Our guide (Julinho) was strongly against the naming of the Jaguars - he even had some T-shirts made stating this just after we left (we saw them on his facebook page)

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I actually think its beneficial to name the jaguars (and other iconic animals.) It helps people identify with them (rightly or wrongly, but its a fact.) And therefore it increases their compassion and caring, I think especially for those that are not as in-tune with wildlife as some of us are. Look at the Cecil phenomena.

 

Anyway, that's a debate for another thread :) I also just returned from the Pantanal, (we just missed running into @@cheetah80 ) and had some great sightings (Hopefully a trip report will follow eventually--still working on photos.) We too saw Mick Jaguar and he's certainly fat and healthy!

 

A young female, the first cat we saw:

 

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She showed us her healthy teeth :o

 

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And Mickey Jaguar on the prowl!

 

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If folks are interested in seeing more of my Pantanal photos as I process them, I am posting one a day (usually) on my Facebook page http://tinyurl.com/ow34z5j

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JAGUAR ENCOUNTER - 1.

In July 2012 we enjoyed our first wildlife vacation. We chose to visit The Pantanal in Brazil, mainly attracted by virtually guaranteed Jaguar sightings. I must admit that at the time I was highly sceptical, because all I knew about Jaguar indicated they were very elusive. As it turned out my fears were not realised as we observed 9 individuals during 7 observation periods. 2 of our sightings were significant in terms of duration and behaviour. All images were captured during a 3 night stay at the Southwild Jaguar Flotel.

This series of images were captured on 7/7/2012 at 07.30 on the Sao Laurenzo River, it was overcast and unseasonably cold. (5C).

This Jaguar just appeared alonside our boat as we cruised slowly along the river, our spotter had missed her, we stopped, she vanished into the undergrowth only to re-appear 2 minutes later, along side her the vegetation was moving slowly, on closer inspection she had a young cub with her. Our guide who was very experienced in the area said he knew the mother but had not seen her for several months and that it was only the 2nd time he had seen a mother with such a young cub. It was quite a rare sighting apparently, he thought the cub was about 6 months old. The sighting lasted about 15 minutes during which time the cub stayed reasonably well hidden.

Image 1. Jaguar suddenly appears.

Image 2. Jaguar moves back into undergrowth, very powerful animal.

Image 3. Mum appears with cub.

Image 4. Mum and cub.

Image 5. Meanwhile 200 yards downstream the professionals set up in the wrong place. JAGUAR ENCOUNTER - 2, to follow.

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JAGUAR ENCOUNTER - 2

The following sighting occurred on the 8/7/2012 at around 12.00, this particular day was very cool and overcast again with little wildlife about. As we were returning at speed down the Cuiaba River to the Southwild Flotel to begin the journey home, out of the corner of my eye I spotted a jaguar on the right bank. The boat's engine was cut and we started to approach the cat. It was clearly distressed and was calling out loudly towards the opposite bank of the river. It was a male cub/juvenile approximately 18 months old. Our guide was of the opinion he had become separated from his mother and was calling to her, sure enough after a few minutes we located a mature female on the opposite bank. We watched her for several minutes before she walked along the bank, entered the river and swam diagonally across, possibly 10 yards in front of our boat at one stage. The power with which she left the river was incredible, her youngster calmly walked towards her and they both vanished into the riverine vegetation. Our guide described the mother as being middle aged, he seemed to know all the jaguar in the area but both these 2 were new to him. The river crossing was about a 100 yards and the river was deep and flowing fast. He felt both had initially intended to cross the river but our approaching boat had frightened the youngster, so once we were past the mother had decided to return. It was a remarkable experience, one we will never forget, we were in the company of both for around 20 minutes. Later that day an ocelot was sighted, does life get any better. We will return.

Image 1. Juvenile male jaguar calling his mother, as seen from the boat.

Image 2. Close up of juvenile jaguar. 400mm slight crop.

Image 3. Juvenile appears to be getting bored with all the attention, clearly needs some dental work doing.

Image 4. Mum on the opposite bank.

Image 5. Mum swims across the river to be re-united with her son. Appears to swim with her eyes closed.

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First the Tapir thread, now this one. The Pantanal is really helping my SafariTalk post count... :)

 

We arrived at the Hotel Pantanal Norte in time for lunch. The plan was to take our first boat trip at 2PM to start looking for Jaguars. But, Julinho came rushing over to us right after lunch and asked if we could be ready to go in 15 minutes. Um....yes!

 

So, off we went with hearts pounding to our first ever sighting of a wild Jaguar:

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WOW! That's pretty much what went through my head at that moment. What a thrill.

 

Over the next 4 days we watched Jaguars sleeping, hunting, swimming, yawning, stretching, bathing, and more...

 

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We weren't the only ones enjoying the sunset:

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After a few days, we got pretty good at finding Jaguar on the banks no matter how hard they tried to hide...

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And yes, Mick is still alive and well (unless there is another one-eyed male Jaguar in the area):

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We were lucky enough to have 11 different Jaguar encounters on the rivers around Porto Jofre which included 8 different individuals. Once again, the Pantanal blew our expectations out of the water. I can't wait to go back some day.

 

 

 

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Impressive beasts.

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What brutes those males are!

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Jaguars? I've posted them in my Trip Report but not here so here they are---the light is often difficult and my camera not too deluxe but saw some amazing jags near Porto Jofre in the Pantanal---here goes:

 

 

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I did use the dreamscope app on some of these to try to make them sharper (purists probably won't like it but I was trying to make the pic better if I could)-- a few more:

 

 

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