Pantanal Safari: Three More Jaguars!

Just as we boarded our boat at 06:30 we heard that not one or two – but three jaguars had been spotted nearby.

We tumbled unceremoniously into the boat and dashed off to search for the three.

11aa Group in boat 3 11aa Wim 1

As we arrived, one beautiful male stood on the bank and stared directly at us. Out came the cameras as the beautiful animal waited long enough for us all to get the exact images we wanted.

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We looked around, and spotted the other two jaguars in the bushes. Clearly a female in oestrus had attracted the attention of two possible suitors, who hung around hopefully. 

We remained in the area for some time, hoping that the jaguars would emerge from the dense foliage, as we took dozens of images of leaves plus various bits of jaguars.

When the jaguars disappeared we moved on and before long we found an unusual sight – unusual for us, that is. The porcupines here are nocturnal and rest in trees. It was great to find the animal up in a tree, and of course we stopped there for some time.

Five or six Giant Otters were swimming along in the river, catching fish with remarkable success as they travelled along. Each time one caught a fish, it would be taken to the river bank and beaten before the otter tucked into its meal.

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As they swam, they sometimes bunched together, so that five little heads could be seen above the water. At other times they spread out, keeping a close eye on one another at all times.

There were hundreds of birds as always, and when we set out this afternoon again we almost immediately saw Cocoi Herons, Great Egrets and beautiful Wattled Jacanas.

Then something drifted toward us and it took a second or two to actually make out what it was … a Black Vulture had found a dead Caiman and was feeding on the carcass as it drifted down the river. We travelled alongside, matching our speed to this strange sight, as we photographed the extraordinary duo. Every now and again, the vulture flapped its wings, creating an even more bizarre scene.

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This evening we again photographed the Fishing Bats as they flew around the Flotel. We have refined our techniques, and are capturing some spot-on images. Great stuff!

Tomorrow we hope to find at least one more jaguar …