How You Should Act if you Encounter a Wild Jaguar

Jaguar by Skeeze. CC0 Public Domain.
Jaguar by Skeeze. CC0 Public Domain.

I have found a great post on Panthera’s blog. For those who do not know, Panthera is an excellent NGO dedicated to protecting the world’s wild cats and their habitats. The article is written by Stephanny Arroyo Arce, a Panthera biologist working in Costa Rica, and it details what you should do if you meet a wild jaguar.

I am not going to go into much detail, because I want you to read the original post. But most of the suggestions are similar to what is recommended for other large predator encounters: avoid sudden movements, pick up small children without bending over, slowly raise your arms to look big, back away slowly, and never turn your back on the animal or run away. There is also a set of recommendations for what to do if you meet a jaguar while you are in a boat, since jaguars are excellent swimmers.

There is much more information in Stephanny Arroyo Arce’s original article, along with some truly wonderful illustrations. I highly recommend you click here to check it out!

Lastly, here is an incredible video from the WWF of a rare black jaguar swimming across the Tapajós River (Rio Tapajós in Portuguese) in Brazil. Now you have proof that encountering jaguars in the water is not unheard of!

13 Thoughts

    1. Hahaha, it probably would’ve been fine! Of all the big cats jaguars are by far the least dangerous to humans. There is only one fatal, confirmed, and unprovoked attack I know of; which many researchers suspect was linked to baiting jaguars for tourism. As soon as you start giving a wild animal food you change its behavior, and in the case of powerful creatures like jaguars that can be very bad.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Será difícil que me encuentre uno, pero ahora sé qué hacer. Sobre todo, no echarme al agua, porque nadan mejor que yo!! Muchas gracias por compartir. El original también me ha gustado ;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ¡Me hace muchísimo feliz que tú habías leído el original! Sí, jaguares son mejor nadadores que muchos humanos, ¡y no reciben clases de natación! Aunque si viviéramos en un lugar que era inundado para la mitad del año, nosotros seríamos mejor nadadores también ;)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Los artículos que recomiendas nunca defraudan.
        Tal vez tengas razón y el hábitat o las inundaciones influyen, pero creo pocos nadadores profesionales son de países tropicales. Ahí tenemos un tema de estudio ;)

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Sí, sería interesante ver si los habilidades de natación de jaguares desarrollaron para ayudarlos en sus hábitats mojados. Aunque no tengo ninguna idea cómo hacer eso!

          Y sobre los nadadores profesionales, con humanos hay muchos factores que podrían ser influyentes. Así actualmente vivir en los países más mojados no nos haría mejor nadadores. Hay tanto pensar en, y es después de mi hora de acostarse! Largo después…

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Here is what I am going to do if I encounter a wild jaguar, which since I can’t go anywhere now, is even more unlikely. I will stand still, back up slowly, and take photos. After this, I will fall to my knees, thanking the God of all jaguars for honoring me with this.
    Stay well Josh.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, please don’t fall to your knees while the jaguar’s still there! Making yourself look like a much smaller animal probably isn’t a good idea :P


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