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Rare New Jaguar Spotted on Wildlife Camera in Arizona Borderlands

new rare jaguar
Screenshot from the new rare Jaguar sighting via Jason Miller outdoor, youtube

A rare jaguar has been spotted on trail cameras in southern Arizona, providing hope that the endangered species could be re-establishing its population in the US. The sighting occurred in the Sierra Vista Ranger District of Arizona’s Coronado National Forest, according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Details of the Sighting

Jaguar Drags Anaconda
Image of a Jaguar via Pexels

The juvenile male jaguar was captured on cameras in March and May. This sighting is significant as jaguars are only sporadically seen in Arizona, which, along with New Mexico, forms the northernmost tip of the creature’s 18-country range. The images were too blurry to identify the jaguar specifically, but the sighting itself is a promising indication.

Implications for Jaguar Population

Jaguar. Image by Benni Fish via Pexels
Jaguar. Image by Benni Fish via Pexels

Russ McSpadden, a conservation advocate at the Center for Biological Diversity, highlighted the importance of this sighting. It suggests that jaguars continue to reestablish territory in the United States despite numerous obstacles. McSpadden emphasized the need to protect connected habitats for these elusive animals.

Historical Sightings in Arizona

rare wild jaguar
Jaguar close to trees. Image via USFWS, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

There have been only three other jaguar sightings in Arizona in the past decade. In 2012, a jaguar named El Jefe was spotted in the Santa Rita Mountains and reappeared in Mexico in 2015. Another jaguar, Sombra, has been seen north of the Chiricahua Mountains since 2016. Yo’ko, a jaguar filmed in the Huachuca Mountains, was found dead in Sonora in 2019.

Male Jaguars and Territory Expansion

close up
Close up one a jaguar. Image by joshua-j-cotten via Unsplash

All of the recent sightings in Arizona have been of male jaguars. Males are known to expand and disperse, exploring new territories when they become adults. This behavior explains the presence of jaguars in the US-Mexico border region as they search for new habitats.

The Role of Female Jaguars

Jaguar via Pexels.

Female jaguars, on the other hand, tend to stay closer to their original territory and migrate more slowly. No female jaguar has been seen in Arizona since 1949. The core population of jaguars, including females and cubs, is currently located about 100 miles south of the US border, in Sonora, Mexico.

The Sighting

YouTube video
“Arizona man who recorded new jaguar sighting speaks out”, 12News youtube

What Does the Recent Sighting Mean for Jaguar Conservation?

Jaguars hold a significant place in indigenous cultures, often revered as symbols of power, protection, and spirituality across the Americas.

IMage by Mike Van Den Bos via Unsplash

The recent sighting of a juvenile male jaguar in Arizona indicates a possible rebound of the species in the US. It underscores the importance of protecting habitats and maintaining connected landscapes to facilitate the movement and survival of these endangered animals.

How Often Are Jaguars Seen in Arizona?

wild jaguar head shot
Cburnett at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Jaguars are rarely seen in Arizona, with only three sightings reported in the past decade. These sightings are significant as they suggest a gradual reestablishment of jaguar territory in the region.

Why Are Jaguars Expanding Their Territory?

Their distinctive rosette-patterned coat helps jaguars blend seamlessly into their forest habitat

Image by Chuttersnap via Unsplash

Male jaguars expand their territory as they reach adulthood, exploring new areas in search of suitable habitats. This behavior leads to occasional sightings in regions like the US-Mexico border.

What Challenges Do Jaguars Face in Reestablishing Their Population?

Jaguar in forest
Jaguar walking in forest. Image by David waite via Unsplash

Jaguars face numerous challenges, including habitat loss, human impacts, and the need for connected habitats. Conservation efforts are crucial to address these challenges and support the reestablishment of jaguar populations.

How Can Habitat Protection Help Jaguars?

Close up shot
Close up image of Jaguar. Image by Mike van den bos via Unsplash

Protecting connected habitats is essential for jaguar conservation. It allows these big cats to move across landscapes, find new territories, and maintain healthy populations. Conservation advocates emphasize the need for continuous efforts in habitat protection.

What Is the Current Status of Jaguars in the US?

jaguar vs. eagle
Image by David Waite via Unsplash

The recent sighting in Arizona suggests a potential rebound of jaguar populations in the US. However, their status remains precarious, and ongoing conservation efforts are needed to support their survival and reestablishment in the region.

How amazing is this Rare New Jaguar sighting? Let me know in the comments!

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