El Jefe, Sole Wild USA Jaguar

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One may be the loneliest number, but it is not a hopeless number, we hope. Thanks to the Atlantic for this story:

There are about 15,000 jaguars living in the wild today. They are solitary creatures, preferring to live and hunt alone. But the one living and hunting in the United States takes the word “loner” to another level: The jaguar, nicknamed “El Jefe,” is the only known wild jaguar in the country.

El Jefe, which means “the boss” in Spanish, made his public debut Wednesday in video footage released by the Seattle-based Conservation CATalyst and the Tucson, Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity. The brief clip shows the big cat roaming the grassy forest floor of the Santa Rita Mountains, outside Tucson, navigating rocky creeks, and just doing jaguar-y things:

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Since 2013, El Jefe has been photographed by motion-detecting cameras more than 100 times. But jaguars are notoriously elusive creatures. The 41-second video posted Wednesday is the product of three years of tracking. Chris Bugbee, a biologist at Conservation CATalyst, said in a statement that researchers regularly tinkered with camera locations and even used a dog specially trained to sniff out wildlife feces to track down El Jefe…

Read the whole article here.

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