Thought the only jaguars in the United States wore teal and gold and favored football? Think again. Recent footage captures what is the only known wild jaguar – named “El Jefe,” meaning “the boss” in Spanish – in the U.S. as it roams the Santa Rita mountains in Arizona.
According to Chris Bugbee, a biologist with Conservation CATalyst, the nature of the solitary animal has made tracking it difficult. “We use our specially trained scat detection dog and spent three years tracking in rugged mountains, collecting data and refining camera sites; these videos represent the peak of our efforts,” said Bugbee.
Jaguars once lived throughout the Southwest region of America, having dissappeared over the last 150 years. The Center for Biological Diversity hopes that others will one day join “El Jefe” and reclaim areas once inhabited by jaguars, as they move north from Mexico.