The jaguar is a keen predator, stalking and judging it's plan of attack. This cunning creature is the largest cat in Latin America. It's raw power and intelligence makes the jaguar stand out from the rest.
Their average weight is between 80 and 120 pounds. Jaguars in Brazil are twice this size.
A jaguar's gestation period is approximately 93 days, averaging about two kittens.
Unlike it's Asian cousin the leopard, the jaguar is stalky and full bodied. They prefer eating smaller prey, such as, fish, snakes, lizards, turtles, birds, crocodiles, deer and small rodents, etc. Climbing trees and killing monkeys is not uncommon. Prey in water can not escape this strong swimmer.
Jaguars live in the rain forest, swampy grasslands in Brazil, and in high altitudes in Peru, and the low scrub in arid lands in Mexico.
The jaguar was chosen as the central theme in Latin America. Translated, it's name means, "A beast that kills it's prey with one bound".
Indian myth tells how the jaguar got his spots. They believe he daubed his coat with mud with it's paws. Their color ranges from rusty red to a paler more golden shade. The rosette markings on it's body resemble a paw print. In the middle of the back, there is a row of black spots that usually blend into a solid black line. Black jaguars are common.
Rarely sighted, the jaguar remains a highly feared and respected creature of the wild.