Pantanal, the Jaguar-watching capital of the world

Pantanal Jaguar
Jaguar in the Pantanal, Brazil.

On Pantanal, Lonely Planet said “While Amazon gets the press coverage, the Pantanal is a better place to see wildlife “. It is one of the few places where the Jaguar can be watched in the wild. And it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve.

An expansive wetland and the largest (measuring 150,000 km²) in the world, the Pantanal is an important ecological habitat for many other animal species, as well, including the endangered neotropical parrots, the giant anteater, and the giant otter. There are 3,000 plus types of plants, 400 plus varieties of mammals, reptiles and amphibians, and 400 plus categories of birds.

Caiman Ecological Refuge, Pantanal, Brazil
Caiman Ecological Refuge, Pantanal, Brazil

Historically, the Jaguar is difficult to spot in large open lands where they roam. But in the Northern Pantanal the probability is in your favor. This is because Jaguars are more prevalent here and there are a number of expert guides who specialized in tracking them. Thankfully, there are lodges in the area that are dedicated to wildlife conservation and offer opportunities for expeditions, these accommodations include Araras Pantanal Eco Lodge and Caiman Ecological Refuge.

Araras notes “The North Pantanal Photo Safari is a huge opportunity to be acquainted with the wild life and to capture amazing photographs. Our knowledgeable guides will take you to the most likely spots, where the animals nest, where they drink, rest, hunt, or simply play with the youngsters.” They explained “Jaguar, Panthera onca, is a big cat, a feline in the Panthera genus. Is the only Panthera found in the Americas. The jaguar is the third-largest feline after the tiger and the lion, and the largest and most powerful feline in the Western Hemisphere “.

Caiman notes “The largest cat in the Americas and largest predator on the South American continent, the jaguar is attracted to the Pantanal by the abundance of food. Territorially protective, it feeds on medium to large-sized mammals, reptiles and birds. It can reach a length of 8.5 feet long and weigh up to 250 pounds. They are solitary animals and only seek a mate during the breeding season. Gestation lasts 100 days and up to four cubs are usually born”.



Article by: Pete Tess, L’ EcoResorts