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Modern Weights and Measurements of Jaguars

Netherlands peter Offline
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DARK JAGUAR

Interesting contributions from start to finish. Many thanks on behalf of all! You almost singlehandedly revived the thread.

It's remarkable that the difference in size between regions is so pronounced in jaguars. Pantanal jaguars more or less compare to Sumatran tigers, whereas those in Belize are smaller than leopards of large subspecies.

There was quite a bit of information about Surinam jaguars in the former Zoological Museum of Amsterdam (ZMA). The collection of the ZMA was moved to the natural history museum of Leiden (Naturalis) some years ago. About 15 years ago, I measured a lot of skulls in the former ZMA. I also found relaible information about the length and weight of a number of jaguars. Based on what I have, I'd say there's, sizewise, little to choose between Surinam and Belize.
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( This post was last modified: 04-07-2020, 10:54 PM by Pckts )

(04-07-2020, 05:31 PM)Dark Jaguar Wrote: Monitoring jaguars with Ultraleve ( ultralight in portuguese ) in the early 1980s (part 1)

Published in July 1st 2014 https://www.oeco.org.br/blogs/rastro-de-onca/28469-monitorando-onca-de-ultraleve-parte-1/


Peter G. Crawshaw Jr.


The author preparing to land the ultraleve Retiro do Corcunda, Miranda Estancia, Pantanal, 1983.

*This image is copyright of its original author



Continuing the format of the two previous articles, this article translates an article written by me originally in English "Top cat in a vast Brazilian marsh" and published in Animal Kingdom Magazine in September/October 1986 and republished in 1988 (Ultralight Flying!, February (144): 16-19) and in 1989 (Current Science, 74 (11): 4-6). The article continues the story of how we left the Acurizal farm to resume the study of jaguars at Miranda Estancia in the south of the Pantanal with a period between the two projects we spent in Poconé between August 1978 and April 1980.

"Over the noise of the engine, the beeping of the radio signal increased in volume in the earphone. As I made a downward turn to check where the signal came from Dr. Wonderful, one of our radio-collared jaguars emerged from a bush capon into the open field 60 meters below me. He stopped at a cattle trail looked directly at me for a few seconds and continued walking apparently oblivious to the strange noisy colored bird flying above him. Happy and extremely excited I turned east and started back to our research station. This was most likely the first time a jaguar had been seen in the nature of an Ultraleve an experimental plane aircraft capable of flying much more slowly than any other aircraft. Its incredible driveability allowed me a much more intimate view of the Pantanal a region in southwestern Brazil that is home to one of the highest concentrations of Neotropic fauna.

This unusual encounter of mine with a nearly adult male jaguar occurred during the first study of the species. Appropriately our research funded by Wildlife Conservation International (WCI, a division of the New York Zoological Society) and the Brazilian Institute of Forest Development - IBDF (the forerunner of IBAMA), was initiated by Dr. George Schaller a world-famous zoologist who had previously conducted the first studies of other large cats such as lions, tigers, and snow leopards. I had been hired by IBDF as the Brazilian counterpart of the study in early 1978 still at the beginning of the project.


Our house at Corcunda, Miranda Estancia, 1980. Next to it there was another one which served as a residence for Howard and also as a laboratory.

*This image is copyright of its original author



The Pantanal covers about 140,000 km² along the upper course of the Paraguay River in the states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul. The terrain varies from flat to undulating with extensive savannas dotted with palm trees and capões of semideciduous forests, gallery forests along watercourses and different configurations of cerrado. Most of this area is flooded annually between December and March when only islands of higher ground remain out of the water. In May the flood waters begin to recede and in October/November only sparse puddles remain. A warm, humid climate predominates most of the year with temperatures rising above 40 C but cold winds from the south can bring thermometers down to below zero between June and August. Seasonal flooding and the absence of roads have so far discouraged larger developments in the region. Cattle ranching is the main economic activity with herds totaling about six million including zebu cattle and Asian buffalo.

Our study was initially located at the Acurizal farm on the western edge of the Pantanal near the border with Bolivia. For 16 months we followed the movements of several jaguars living in the area and collected information on the flora and fauna including capybaras, the large rodents that constitute one of the main prey of jaguars. The study was going very well until we discovered that farm employees had killed two of the jaguars we were studying ( the ones on the post above on "Epitaph for a Jaguar" Animal Kingdom Magazine April/May, 1980 ). The death of these animals broke the social structure of the already small population and forced us to seek a new area of study.

By indication of a common friend we chose a new area in the south of the Pantanal in a place called Corcunda a retreat in Miranda Estancia a cattle ranch of 248 thousand hectares. The retreat was 20 km from the farmhouse and 56 km from the city of Miranda, the closest city. We chose this place not only for its beauty with the forest on the edge of a bay but also for being the last point on high ground that could be reached by car. From there on the lower part of the Pantanal was extended a favorite habitat for jaguars. As to give us luck in our first visit to the place we found footprints of a jaguar on the edge of the bay.

When I moved to the farm George had already left the project to begin his study of the Giant Panda in China leaving researcher Howard Quigley who had been hired by WCI to replace him in Brazil. Our first mission was to build the houses and a hangar and landing strip for the Ultraleve ( mini plane ).


Rustic hangar built to house the ultraleve, Retiro do Corcunda, Pantanal de Miranda, 1983.

*This image is copyright of its original author



Life in Corcunda was easy. We shared the retreat with farm workers and their families who occupied two other houses. I was always impressed by how my wife Mara and our two daughters Danielle and Beatriz adapted to the life on the farm. Born and raised in Porto Alegre the capital of Rio Grande do Sul, Mara suddenly found herself running around with agouti and peccaries attacking her vegetable garden and sucuris ( anacondas ) eating our chickens. When later we had to send Danielle to school in Porto Alegre with her grandparents she had trouble convincing her classmates that their stories were not lies.

Flying over the Pantanal in our ultraleve with one-person capacity, Howard and I had access to the most remote areas in a way not even the farm pilot with the Cessna 182 Skylane knew. Having our own plane also saved us the regular commercial air taxi expenses for the locations of the jaguars necessary for their monitoring. It allowed us to check their movements daily and sometimes we could even discover carcasses of slaughtered animals from the air.


Privileged view


It is difficult to describe the sensation of slowly flying over an inhospitable wild region sitting in the open "cabin" of our device with the first rays of the sun starting to heat up the fresh morning air. I watched groups of howler monkeys below feeding on the tree tops, Pantanal Deers  with water up to half their legs, choosing different species of the aquatic vegetation, families of capybaras grazing peacefully along the water courses and caimans warming up in the sun.


Female of Pantanal deers  (Blastocerus dichotomus).

*This image is copyright of its original author



We soon fell into a daily routine. Using the ultraleve in the first two hours of light we would locate the jaguars with necklace, selecting one of them to follow on the ground. Then using horses or canoes depending on the season drought or flood we spent 3 to 4 hours to reach the place where the animal had been located earlier, sometimes just to find that it was no longer within reach of the equipment. But we usually found the signal more than 2 km away and made a fly camp with our nets. Every 15 minutes we would record the ambient temperature and movements and change in activity of the animal. These cats stay in one place for a long time between two and four days only if they have killed a large prey like a peccari or a capybara and if nothing upsets them. On those occasions we were able to maintain contact for up to 72 hours. Often, however, jaguars spend only one night with a carcass.

The ultraleve was a valuable tool but sometimes it brought us moments of anxiety. On a windy morning in October 1982 Howard took off from the Piúva retreat track to locate the jaguars while I prepared our horses and equipment for the day. After two hours without him returning I knew something had gone wrong as the device had enough fuel for only an hour and a half at most. Through a complicated network of messages passed by vehicle, telephone and horses I was able to call an air taxi driver from the nearest airport in Aquidauana. In the middle of the afternoon the pilot arrived and we immediately left looking for Howard. For this we used the same system that we used to locate the jaguars since I had installed a radio transmitter in the ultraleve itself precisely for an emergency like this. I could only hope that Howard had turned the transmitter on.

We flew for an hour before I could detect a very weak signal. Using the directional antennas in another five minutes we could see the device and Howard he seemed fine. Using broken branches on the ground he had written "H2O" and "FACTION" in large letters. The plane had landed on a stretch of pimply shrubby vegetation in a part of the farm rarely visited even by rodeo guys.

The pilot and I flew back to Corcunda and I prepared a backpack with several items including a mosquito net and raincoat, sheet, flashlight and batteries, cookies, repellent and even a Time magazine. I filled a plastic gallon with water and we flew back to the crash site. Fighting the wind I opened Cessna's door and managed to throw the backpack hitting a dense bush that I had looked at. We found out later however that the gallon had broken when it hit the ground and the water had leaked out. Only the next morning when the pilot threw him five green coconuts and a note warning that we were on the way to the rescue was Howard able to drink.

Riding on the horseback it took us four hours to get to the scene. After drinking a pint and a half of tererê (cold chimarrão) Howard told us what had happened. He was flying low to gauge the location of Eva, one of our newest jaguars when a sail cable came loose because of the engine vibration causing it to go out. With no time to choose a more appropriate location for the emergency landing he pointed the plane at a good-sized bush to make up for the fall. He suffered only a knee injury from the crash and the plane had its propeller shaft slightly bent.

When we started going back it was interesting to find Eva's tracks over Howard's footprints where he had walked the day before. Probably driven by curiosity she must have come during the night to inspect the strange intruder in her territory.

To pick up the Ultraleve,four days later I returned to the site with a farm worker and a digger. By mid-afternoon the tractor driver had cleared a small runway and I took off and I was not very happy about it. The bent axle made the plane shake so hard that I feared his parts would start to come loose and fly by themselves. I climbed into a closed spiral higher and higher over the small runway in the middle of that desolate immensity deciding whether I should continue. The sight of the white houses of the Carrapatinho retreat shining in the distance helped me in my decision and holding the parachute on my lap I pointed the plane in that direction.

After an eternity of 20 minutes all the time I was forcing my view looking for open areas where I could land the plane in case of an emergency I managed to get to the retreat without any further problems. But that was not the end of that story yet. That night a wind storm broke the ropes with which I had tied the ultraleve to the ground and threw the headgear over a fence. The aluminum tubes were twisted like noodles. In order to get it in flight condition again we had to order parts from Rio de Janeiro and hire a specialist mechanic who came from Brasília".





Jaguars capture techniques and the young Mr. Wonderful.  (Part 2)

Published in July 2nd 2014https://www.oeco.org.br/blogs/rastro-de-onca/28471-tecnicas-de-captura-de-onca-e-o-jovem-mr-wonderful/

Peter G. Crawshaw Jr.

The following text is a continuation of the first part of the article "Top cat in a vast Brazilian marsh", published in Animal Kingdom Magazine, September/October 1986, and re-published in 1988 (Ultralight Flying!, February (144): 16-19) and in 1989 (Current Science, 74 (11): 4-6). The article tells the story of the study of jaguars at Miranda Estancia, in the south of the Pantanal, with a period between August 1978 and April 1980.

Jaguars are so discreet in their habits that the only time we had direct contact with them was during the captures to place the necklaces obviously the most exciting aspect of our work. We adopted one of the traditional methods of hunting these cats in the Pantanal using specially trained dogs that chased the animal until it climbed a tree or watered it in a stretch of dense vegetation. Each capture was a new event and no participant neither the jaguar nor the dogs, horses or people reacted in the same way.

The day we captured Dolly an adult female we were on the trail of another female, the Mother to change her necklace whose battery needed replacing (the duration is a little over a year). Our group - Mr. Jaime, foreman of retreat Piúva, Darlindo a dog handler, Howard, and I  was crossing a stretch of flooded field when Mr. Jaime saw a jaguar coming out of a small forest captain and running into the nearby forest. After testing the frequencies of our harnessed animals I was sure that this was a new animal, without necklace.

We released the dogs and a pandemonium broke out. Barking in frenzy they immediately picked up the scent trail (the "beat", as they say in the Pantanal) left by the jaguar and entered the forest. Tying the horses in the shade we opened a trail through the closed vegetation hurrying to get close enough to the dogs to hear their barking. Suddenly the barking changed tone, from the continuous howling characteristic of the race turned into short and excited barkings: the jaguar had perched, it had climbed a tree! Darlindo's experienced eyes soon located it squatting on a fork mimicking the dense foliage. He and Jaime attached the dogs to their collars and tied them at a distance from there. Howard and I simultaneously threw two darts, one on each part of the animal's muscular quarters and walked silently away so she could get down before the anesthetic took effect.


 Dolly female jaguar on the tree fork.   Photo: Peter Crawshaw collection

*This image is copyright of its original author



When she leapt to the ground already dizzy she started running in circles. Twice she came a little over a metre from me but she changed direction without any sign of aggression when I yelled at her and clapped. Before we could throw another dart she disappeared into the undergrowth. Soon after Darlindo again found her lying still, but yet alert under a bush. One more dart, this time in the palette and in a few minutes she was sleeping harmlessly at our feet. When we examined her we discovered that this 75 kg female was in heat (estrus) she still had semen over her swollen vulva. Small open cuts on her head, neck, and shoulders attested to her recent love encounter. We adjusted the radio-collar on her neck safely and waited at a prudent distance until she recovered from the anesthesia and moved away from the site.

The capon from whom she had left revealed more surprises. Not only did we find fresh footprints of an adult male there mixed with hers but also the carcasses of a female sub-adult Puma and a male sub-adult Tapir. Both animals had been destroyed in the back of the head. The jaguars were probably eating the tapir when we interrupted their meal with our arrival. Marks on the grass indicated that they had killed the tapir in another capon about 60 meters away and dragged it over to where they had killed the Puma, but not for food. This reminded me of an occasion in Acurizal when a pair of jaguars had apparently killed a midget anteater as a joke, as they had merely bit him in the back of the head and abandoned him. George Schaller had speculated that this might be a way to reduce the tension and aggressiveness between a pair while the female is still not very receptive.

During our three and a half years in Miranda, we equipped seven jaguars, from a population we estimate at about 52 animals. We were lucky to capture an entire family group composed of an adult female the Mother and her two sub-adult cubs Felicia female and Dr. Wonderful male. Two years later we still captured another male offspring of that same female. Being able to monitor this family gave us new knowledge about the social organization and area ownership system of the largest feline in the Americas.

In March two months after her capture Felicia and her brother with 18 months old separated from their mother who immediately began to cover a larger area apparently looking for a male. Our assumption was confirmed when some day between July and August she gave birth to a new litter. (The gestation period of a jaguar is approximately 110 days). Later we captured and equipped one of these cubs, a male that we named as Felix. Based on the footprints we found we were reasonably certain that the mother had given birth to two cubs again which seems to be normal for jaguars.

Felix male soon established a new territory close to her mother's. Dr. Wonderful male headed east looking for unclaimed territory. The period of dispersion for a male is generally difficult. He is forced to leave his native area expelled by his mother until as an adult he establishes his own territory. During this time he has to cross unknown terrain risking finding other resident animals which could harass him. At the beginning of this journey I found Dr. Wonderful male in a woodland capon completely isolated by the flood. It was late March 1982. I set up my net about 100 meters from where he was feeding on a giant anteater at the other end of the capon and prepared to spend a long night monitoring his activity.


Driving camp monitoring the jaguars at Miranda Estancia, Pantanal de Miranda, 1982.  Photo: Peter Crawshaw collection

*This image is copyright of its original author


At dusk, another jaguar burst nearby in the same capon we were in. I knew it was a female from the quick succession of short roars. A male's vocalization differs by being much slower and more severe. The next morning I confirmed that it was a female by measuring her footprints - the footprints of a male are larger and more rounded with the fingers more separated from each other. After some hesitation Dr. Wonderful male responded with apparently shy roars and for the next hour they communicated with each other, the female's roars becoming more impatient and the young male's more reticent.

Two hours later Dr. Wonderful male passed by me making a noise in the water when he passed about 30 m from my net. His radio signal slowly disappeared in the night taking my sense of security with him. As soon as he left the female went to where he had been and until two o'clock in the morning she wandered restlessly around disturbing the dawn's silence with her rough roars. Then the sound of an adult male echoed from afar to which she responded and then apparently went to meet him.

This incident gave us a glimpse of the importance of vocalizations in the jaguar's intra-species communication. On one hand the adult female and the young male avoided direct aggressive contact which could have resulted in disabling injuries to one or both animals. On the other hand the female's calls had served to attract an adult male from a great distance. This last case seems to be the main function of the vocalizations of the species in the Pantanal since we commonly heard these calls during the reproductive season from December to May.

For the next two months I followed Dr. Wonderful male's movements as he left his home area. In July five months after the separation from his family he finally settled in a new territory 30 km east of the territories of his mother and sister. We had no further evidence that he associated with them again. In December 1983 just before our project ended I found him lying next to an adult female without necklace. At the age of just over three years I was sure that he had secured his place in the farm's resident jaguar population.

Photo: Peter Crawshaw collection

*This image is copyright of its original author



In 1985 researcher Alan Rabinowitz of the Wildlife Conservation Society completed a 20-month study of the jaguar in the forests of Belize Central America (see "In the Realm of the Master Jaguar," Animal Kingdom March/April 1986). Preliminary comparisons with our results show the adaptability of a species that is distributed from Mexico to Argentina.

In the most open habitat of the Pantanal jaguar territories averaged 142 km² almost four times more than the 40 km2 found in Belize. While our jaguars fed mainly on large prey such as capybaras and peccaries the most important food in Belize was armadillos. These differences are probably related to the fact that jaguars in the Pantanal are twice as big as those in Belize. The average weight of six adult males in Belize was 58 kg while five females from the Pantanal averaged 76 kg.  Dr. Wonderful our only male even as a subadult weighed 70 kg at 22 months and in the Pantanal there are claims/reports of males over 128 kg.

The differences in habitat also influences the area tenure system. In Belize females had small exclusive territories. Females in the Pantanal had large overlapping areas during the dry season but during the flood each occupied almost exclusively an area of only one-tenth that used during the dry season. The more we learn about these types of geographical adaptation to local environments the better we can plan comprehensive management strategies.

Jaguars are protected by laws in almost every country where they still occur but in general they are still hunted for their skins or as trophies. Employees on cattle ranches still kill these felines ostensibly to protect cattle from predation. But while jaguars do kill cattle this percentage is only a very small part of what is lost because of diseases, parasites, floods and other factors.

Habitat destruction represents another major threat to the species. With each passing year, the forests that shelter and protect these magnificent animals diminish more in the face of the inexorable advance of man and development. Most of the Pantanal is located on private properties. Only two areas are protected by the federal government: the 138,000-hectare Pantanal National Park, near the border with Bolivia and a small island on the Paraguay River near Cáceres the Taiamã Ecological Station. Even with these sanctuaries however the future of the jaguar in the Pantanal is still uncertain.

Large carnivores are particularly susceptible to extinction several of them - the grizzly bear, the tiger and the snow leopard for example  have already been eliminated from vast areas of their original distribution. These animals occupy the top of the food chain and protect large enough portions of their distribution areas to ensure sustainable populations of these species would certainly help the survival of many of the species below them in the pyramid. Even if only for this reason jaguars and other species like them should be considered and treated as symbols for conservation. According to John Weaver, national coordinator for the American grizzly habitat program their survival "will be a test of our commitment to wildlife and wild places, an account of our willingness to share a little of this small but beautiful Earth on which we live with our wild neighbors.





Pantanal: the adventures to recapture Dr. Wonderful

Published in December 10th 2014 https://www.oeco.org.br/blogs/rastro-de-onca/28825-pantanal-as-aventuras-para-recapturar-dr-wonderful/

Peter G. Crawshaw Jr.

Introduction:

Taking advantage of the fact that I have organized material to resume the work in my book (one day it comes out...) reviewing old field notes, I will present here more information on the first study of the jaguar already in its second phase at Miranda Estância, MS, in the early 80s. Nowadays ties made with steel cables have been considered more efficient for the capture of big cats and the method has been improved for use in lions, tigers, leopards, pumas, and in our jaguar as well. There are now several well-trained teams in Brazil to use this technique which in addition to improvements in the preparation of the loop itself mainly includes the parallel development of a system of transmitters used in the loop which warn when it was fired. Time is a crucial factor for the safe use of the technique as the risk of injury to the captured animal increases directly with how much it remains trapped in the loop. The shorter the time the less chance of the animal being injured. For this the responsible team must have a veterinarian with experience in the sedation of large cats and ideally also a biologist for the correct procedures in biometrics and collection of biological material for sanitary and genetic studies. And the team has to be prepared to go as soon as possible to the loop fired check if there was really the capture. If it occurred the animal must be immediately anesthetized and taken out of the loop at any time, day or night, rain or sun. By the way this is an extremely important precaution that the places chosen to set the snares are protected from direct exposure to the sun to avoid the risk of hyperthermia and that it is clean of vegetation or branches in which the animal can snuggle or get hurt.

However, as we narrate below at the time we started our study the method traditionally used for the capture (and generally hunting) of our big cats were dogs specially trained for this purpose. With a well-trained pack of onceiros dogs it was possible to program extremely efficient captures and mainly for this reason jaguar populations in the Pantanal (and other ecosystems as well) were seriously threatened. As already reported the services of a former hunter with his dogs were used for the first captures of the collared animals in the project in Acurizal. With these positive experiences one of the first steps I took when restarting the study at Miranda Estancia was to begin to form a pack of the project itself to gain independence at this crucial stage for the study. First borrowing dogs with experience and adding to them dogs of good origin that were donated to me. In this process I had an extremely important help from João Carlos Marinho Lutz, owner of one of the most beautiful farms I have ever known in the Pantanal. Santo Antônio do Paraíso between the Itiquira and Correntes rivers in the city of Rondonópolis. He helped me to obtain onceiros dogs that I used in the first captures at Miranda Estancia which allowed the subsequent success of the project. I even had 28 dogs of my own for use in the project some very good and others not so good. But together they guaranteed with some efficiency the captures and recaptures that made it possible to bring the study to a successful conclusion.


With that introduction. I'll narrate the case below

On July 17th 1982 we left the Corcunda retreat where the jaguar study project was held in the Pantanal of Mato Grosso at Miranda Estancia, MS, to try to recapture Dr. Wonderful male (nicknamed Doc), a male sub-adult of jaguar to exchange his VHF necklace. Once the necklace had been put on him on December 28th 1981 we were beginning to worry that with the growth of the neck musculature in the last six months the necklace might be starting to bother him. The day before Howard Quigley my project colleague and researcher at the (then) New York Zoological Society (now the Wildlife Conservation Society) had located all three jaguars fitted with the necklace with our air taxi pilot Nilson Antônio Paes (Pita for his friends). We decided to take the opportunity to recapture Doc ( Dr. Wonderful male ) because he was near the Corcunda. In the capture group besides Howard and myself there were Luiz Flamarion Barbosa de Oliveira (currently a researcher in the Mammals Sector of the National Museum, in Rio de Janeiro) who had come to spend a few days with me, Vadú, foreman of the Corcunda retreat, Bastião, Sabino and farm employees.

We went by canoe taking with us five dogs specially trained for this kind of hunting (Chuvisco, my master, Volante, Patrulha, Perigoso and Leão), bordering the north side of Corcunda Bay to the west. Investigating the presence of vultures Vadú found a carcass of a calf about one year old which had been killed and eaten by a jaguar a few days ago. Since Howard had located Doc ( Dr. Wonderful male ) in this same area in another flight made on the 7th it was very likely that he was the responsible. We left the canoe there and followed on foot following the mountain range looking for tracks with the dogs on leashes (collars that join two dogs in the same guide). We found old and new traces/trails of a male probably of Doc himself. In Morrinho in high woods we found another dead calf, fresher but as we had also found traces of a small Puma we could not know which animal had killed the calf. The predator had eaten almost everything except the trachea and the paw tips. Then we crossed to the Tuiuti field still following the mountain range. We crossed several corixos with very closed vegetation mainly of thorn trees.

At 2:00 PM Howard picked up Doc's necklace signal, frequency 007 on the receiver and we started following him. At 2:30 PM the signal was pretty strong and I let the dogs out in some pretty dirty woods. At 3:15 PM we saw him in a tall tree about 10m high in a tangle of thin branches over the corixo where the vegetation is well closed formed mainly thorns. Besides Doc being too high on the tree for a safe shot with the anesthetic the place was difficult in case he decides to fight the dogs after being hit. Because of that being already late to start a capture and also considering the period necessary for the recovery of the effects of the anesthetic I decided not to risk leaving the recapture for a more favorable situation in another day. The fact that the necklace was working well and seemed not to be bothering the animal left me calm enough not to risk creating a complicated situation. We trapped the dogs in the collars and we moved away leaving Doc calm, still on top of the tree.


The return to the canoes was hard, bogged down in soft clay/dirt in the areas where the flood water had already fallen. Howard was so tired that he didn't bother to look for his sneakers that he was stuck at the bottom of a puddle of clay/dirt. He walked to the boats with only a sock foot. The night had fallen and only I had brought a flashlight. Vadú was guiding us but he ended up disoriented in the darkness and Sabino took the lead using my flashlight. We came in the back, saw little and became entangled in thorny thickets all the time. We arrived back at the Corcunda near midnight, some frustrated that we had not succeeded in changing of Doc's necklace. But although exhausted, I was clear in my mind that the necklace and the animal were fine and I was sure that I had acted right given the circumstances.

Six days later on July 23rd Howard flew over at 6:30 AM. and Doc was located again. Celestino a former jaguar hunter from Miranda Estancia and Vadú's father had gone together. He was the best connoisseur of the farm. He helped in the description of the place where the animal was. Celestino explained to Vadú by telephone where Doc was, still very close to where we had left him on the day 17th in the winter of Tuiuti.

We left the Corcunda at 9:30 AM. Vadú, Bastião, Sabino, Zelfo, Howard and me. Vadú, Howard and I crossed the bay by canoe taking the dogs and we went to meet the others who went on horseback/riding horses at the Bebedouro. This way we did not tire the dogs besides avoiding any risk with some daring caiman. With the description of where Doc was we went straight there and at 11:30 AM Howard took the sign of the collar, about 600 meters from where he had been located that morning. There were vultures at that point indicating the presence of a carrion.

At 11:45 AM. I dropped Chuvisco ( dog ) into the bush and right after that he took the beat. When he did I let the other dogs go. Vadú, Bastião and Zelfo followed the dogs into the bush and Sabino, Howard and I went through the field surrounding the capon taking the horses.
At 12:00 PM Sabino saw Doc in a low tree on the edge of the bush on a pitchfork about 6 meters from the ground. The dogs were tied and at 12:20 PM Howard and I threw two darts simultaneously, him with the handgun/pistol in the right quarter and me with the rifle in the left quarter. With the impact of the darts Doc took two steps forward on the branch making mention of leaping but he stopped again. With other darts ready we shot again, Howard in the right quarter and me in the right palette. This time the jaguar went down into the bush, with the dogs behind. After a moment of confusion they found him again and cornered him down to the ground about 60 meters in a dirty stretch of woods. He was already very dizzy with the anesthesia and could not get up anymore, the dogs around him. Sabino and I were the first ones to arrive and we started to tie the dogs. It was not necessary to apply more anesthetic.


Dr. Wonderful ( Doc ) male in his recapture in July 1982, Miranda Estância, Pantanal do MS. In the photo we were waiting for the anesthetic to take effect to enable the approach to proceed with the biometrics and exchange of the necklace.

*This image is copyright of its original author


Now with 211 cm and 95 kg in weight compared to the 70 kg of the first capture, he ( Doc ) had already reached the size of an adult male jaguar. The ocelot necklace that had been adapted for placement six months earlier had worked well and was replaced with a new necklace. In 50 minutes the whole procedure was over and we moved away to follow the recovery from the anesthesia. At 1:55 PM he got up, walked away and disappeared into the vegetation. Through the VHF of the necklace he continued to give us information about his habits and behavior until December 1983 already at the end of the project. Then we found him in the company of a female fulfilling his role as a resident male in that jaguar population, at that time, one of the few remaining in the Pantanal.

The recapture of the male Dr. Wonderful (Doc) in July 1982, Miranda Estancia, Pantanal MS. In the photo he's already with the new necklace with Sabino, Zelfo, Vadú and Bastião.

*This image is copyright of its original author



Floods that contained the advance of cattle ranching in the lower and isolated areas of the Pantanal and the control of the action of the leathermen who acted with great impunity in the region are among a series of circumstances over the following years, which allowed the recovery of jaguars and other species of fauna of the Pantanal such as caimans and otters. Today, they are in a much better conservation situation which gives us hope for a safer future for this unique ecosystem.
Crawshaw is the foremost expert in Pantanal Jaguars, same with Paul Donahue in modern times
Here is Crawshaw with Fernando Tortato

Male M10, Trapezio, captured and re-collared last evening - a 106 kg male. Shown here with whole capture crew, from left Joares May, Peter Crawshaw, Allison Devlin, Jacqui Frair, and Fernando Tortato

*This image is copyright of its original author
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(04-07-2020, 09:21 PM)peter Wrote: DARK JAGUAR

Interesting contributions from start to finish. Many thanks on behalf of all! You almost singlehandedly revived the thread.

It's remarkable that the difference in size between regions is so pronounced in jaguars. Pantanal jaguars more or less compare to Sumatran tigers, whereas those in Belize are smaller than leopards of large subspecies.

There was quite a bit of information about Surinam jaguars in the former Zoological Museum of Amsterdam (ZMA). The collection of the ZMA was moved to the natural history museum of Leiden (Naturalis) some years ago. About 15 years ago, I measured a lot of skulls in the former ZMA. I also found relaible information about the length and weight of a number of jaguars. Based on what I have, I'd say there's, sizewise, little to choose between Surinam and Belize.

There are some Mesoamerican jaguars that have reached weights of over 90 kg registered which is at par with the largest leopards. On average Iranian leopards weight 62 kg which isn't too far away from the 57 kg for Belize jaguars. We don't have much data on rainforests leopards to make an assessment, but from what I've seen their weights seem to overlap with Mesoamerican jaguars as well.


*This image is copyright of its original author
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( This post was last modified: 04-08-2020, 03:13 AM by Pckts )

(04-08-2020, 02:09 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote:
(04-07-2020, 09:21 PM)peter Wrote: DARK JAGUAR

Interesting contributions from start to finish. Many thanks on behalf of all! You almost singlehandedly revived the thread.

It's remarkable that the difference in size between regions is so pronounced in jaguars. Pantanal jaguars more or less compare to Sumatran tigers, whereas those in Belize are smaller than leopards of large subspecies.

There was quite a bit of information about Surinam jaguars in the former Zoological Museum of Amsterdam (ZMA). The collection of the ZMA was moved to the natural history museum of Leiden (Naturalis) some years ago. About 15 years ago, I measured a lot of skulls in the former ZMA. I also found relaible information about the length and weight of a number of jaguars. Based on what I have, I'd say there's, sizewise, little to choose between Surinam and Belize.

There are some Mesoamerican jaguars that have reached weights of over 90 kg registered which is at par with the largest leopards. On average Iranian leopards weight 62 kg which isn't too far away from the 57 kg for Belize jaguars. We don't have much data on rainforests leopards to make an assessment, but from what I've seen their weights seem to overlap with Mesoamerican jaguars as well.


*This image is copyright of its original author

Largest Skull shown
10.3'' x 6.4'' Total Score 16.7''

For Comparison 

A skull of that size in Almeidas book would be on the bottom tier (2nd smallest recorded of all Jaguars,) one with almost identical measurements was hunted by Butch White
With a score of 9 4/16'' x 6.5'' Total Score of 16.3'' and a weight of 67kg
The next one up from that has a score of 17.01 and weight of 83kg
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( This post was last modified: 04-08-2020, 04:12 PM by peter )

(04-08-2020, 02:09 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote:
(04-07-2020, 09:21 PM)peter Wrote: DARK JAGUAR

Interesting contributions from start to finish. Many thanks on behalf of all! You almost singlehandedly revived the thread.

It's remarkable that the difference in size between regions is so pronounced in jaguars. Pantanal jaguars more or less compare to Sumatran tigers, whereas those in Belize are smaller than leopards of large subspecies.

There was quite a bit of information about Surinam jaguars in the former Zoological Museum of Amsterdam (ZMA). The collection of the ZMA was moved to the natural history museum of Leiden (Naturalis) some years ago. About 15 years ago, I measured a lot of skulls in the former ZMA. I also found relaible information about the length and weight of a number of jaguars. Based on what I have, I'd say there's, sizewise, little to choose between Surinam and Belize.

There are some Mesoamerican jaguars that have reached weights of over 90 kg registered which is at par with the largest leopards. On average Iranian leopards weight 62 kg which isn't too far away from the 57 kg for Belize jaguars. We don't have much data on rainforests leopards to make an assessment, but from what I've seen their weights seem to overlap with Mesoamerican jaguars as well.


*This image is copyright of its original author

I know some male jaguars in that region can reach the weight of the heaviest leopards, but I was referring to the average of male jaguars in Belize on one hand (a) and male leopards in Natal on the other (b):


*This image is copyright of its original author


The table says young adult male leopards (4-6 years of age) in Natal average just over 66 kg., whereas mature males (7 years of age and older) average 72,25 kg. (about 160 pounds). Natal male leopards, as far as I know, seem to be the heaviest at the level of subspecies. The heaviest male (79 kg.), by the way, was a young adult.

Rainforest leopards are an enigma. I only saw 2 skulls from western central Africa in natural history museums, but they were longer and more robust than the others. Skulls of rainforest leopards have a somewhat flatter profile. The dentition seems to be heavier than in other subspecies.

Leopards in central parts of Africa, and those shot in elevated regions in Kenia in particular, seem to compare to Natal leopards. At the level of subspecies, they could be as large or a bit larger. I recently saw a few photographs of large skulls from Kenia. I'll post the details when I have more information.
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(04-08-2020, 02:09 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote: There are some Mesoamerican jaguars that have reached weights of over 90 kg registered which is at par with the largest leopards.

Can you please show me those weights of over 90 kg? The only weights that I have from Mesoamerica are those from Belize and none surpased the 70 kg. As far I know, no other jaguars hed been weighed in this region (Chiapas-Yucatan, Guatemala and Honduras [sadly, extinct in El Salvador]).
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@Dark Jaguar and @Pckts, you made an excelent work in creating this huge database of modern records of weights and a couple of measurements from jaguars in the Pantanal (and other Brazilian regions) in modern times.

I think is time to start gathering all this information and I will like to ask you if you can make a table with these records. Believe me, I will love to do it, but time is short for me now.

You can use a simple Excel ® table and start adding the information, you can use this form if you want it:

** No. of specimen -- Popular name -- Weight (kg) -- Capture date -- Source -- Remarks **

This is just a suggestion, you can use other type of columns in Excel.

Tell me, what do you think? Do you accept the mission? Wink
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( This post was last modified: 04-08-2020, 04:36 AM by Dark Jaguar )

PETER

Thank you so much Peter I truly appreciate it. Its a pleasure to contribute to Wildfacts

About pantanal male jaguars overlapping with sumatran tigers, I'd say 15 years ago it would be much less often to see it for obvious reasons but pantanal jags with good prey base like today ( northern pantanal is a good example ) can overlap with sumatran tigers more often than before. Both south and north pantanal male jags today regarding size wise are living their best moments since many many decades ago.
 
About surinam jags If you manage to get the information on them, dont forget to share with us  Lol   We all would appreciate it. I heard a few years ago their body parts have been sought after and traded overseas.  Sad

Regarding the skulls, Leandro Silveira President of Jaguar Conservation Fund (IOP) from Cerrado has many jaguars skulls and skins ( all killed by poachers unfortunately ) in his project including pantanal jags, cerrado jags, caatinga jags... Leandro is a true jaguar specialist and he knows how the whole dynamic in its sorrounding works not only in cerrado but in the whole Brazil not to mention about the other animals. He has some good jags skulls here in Brazil.


This was when Richard Rasmussen (famous brazilian biologist) visited IOP in Cerrado.

Check the skulls and skins at 20:40 min. 






Pckts

 Absolutely, Crawshaw is the man one sits down and learn with. just imagine how many awesome stories/facts he got.

Despite not being fan of estimations Crawshaw would be the guy I'd ask on the weight estimation of the most impressive southern pantanal male jaguar I've seen so far, Colombiano male, He was never weighed as far as I am concerned and the way he dwarfs other males is ridiculous.



GuateGojira

Thank you very much, That's a great idea count me in Like   I am sure the results on that table will be marvelous.


Soon there'll be some good stuff coming, I'm gonna be posting a few tables of some brazilian jags captured from 2000 to 2009 including a few Amazon, Cerrado and more than 30 Pantanal jags in addition to another content on the average size of the Cerrado male jaguar and his measurements in details and even comparison to a cerrado Puma. I just need to finish the translations into english. I'll post it soon, stay tuned you all.
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( This post was last modified: 04-08-2020, 04:45 AM by OncaAtrox )

(04-08-2020, 03:47 AM)GuateGojira Wrote:
(04-08-2020, 02:09 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote: There are some Mesoamerican jaguars that have reached weights of over 90 kg registered which is at par with the largest leopards.

Can you please show me those weights of over 90 kg? The only weights that I have from Mesoamerica are those from Belize and none surpased the 70 kg. As far I know, no other jaguars hed been weighed in this region (Chiapas-Yucatan, Guatemala and Honduras [sadly, extinct in El Salvador]).

Some males have been registered to wander in the 80 kg range in Central America

*This image is copyright of its original author


And this is the information I have for jaguars that surpass the 90 kg threshold in Mexico, those measurements are different nowadays that jaguars have had such a fragmented habitat with less prey and hunting pressure.

*This image is copyright of its original author

https://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/arizona/Documents/SpeciesDocs/Jaguar/049777%20-%20Jaguar%20Recovery%20Outline.pdf
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This was another estimation based for Mesoamerican jaguars in the Southern United States, although the methods for reaching that estimation are unclear


*This image is copyright of its original author

https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/99/3/724/4956954
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(04-08-2020, 03:58 AM)GuateGojira Wrote: @Dark Jaguar and @Pckts, you made an excelent work in creating this huge database of modern records of weights and a couple of measurements from jaguars in the Pantanal (and other Brazilian regions) in modern times.

I think is time to start gathering all this information and I will like to ask you if you can make a table with these records. Believe me, I will love to do it, but time is short for me now.

You can use a simple Excel ® table and start adding the information, you can use this form if you want it:

** No. of specimen -- Popular name -- Weight (kg) -- Capture date -- Source -- Remarks **

This is just a suggestion, you can use other type of columns in Excel.

Tell me, what do you think? Do you accept the mission? Wink

What do you mean : “time is short for me now” ?

Are you alright ?

Is this health related ? [i hope not]
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(04-08-2020, 04:44 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote: Some males have been registered to wander in the 80 kg range in Central America

*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author

And this is the information I have for jaguars that surpass the 90 kg threshold in Mexico, those measurements are different nowadays that jaguars have had such a fragmented habitat with fee prey and hunting pressure.

*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author
https://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/arizona/Documents/SpeciesDocs/Jaguar/049777%20-%20Jaguar%20Recovery%20Outline.pdf

Been honest, none of those weights are from Mesoamerica, in the strict sence of the word. In fact, while some maps shows to you that Mesoamerica starts in the middle of Mexico and others even up to the Eastern Sierra Madre, other shows only the region of the Mayas, which is the Mexican states of Chiapas and Yucatan, and the countries of Guatemala, Belize, and the northern part of Honduras and El Salvador; the last one is the region normally used in our contries. Even if we take the "larger" region (the map that I put here), the Sinaloa state is still out of that area (the second map, region is red):

*This image is copyright of its original author


*This image is copyright of its original author


So, the information that you posted is very good, and I will save it (thanks for that), but certainly those from "Mexico" are probably closer to the population of the northern region of Mexico and Texas/Arizona than to the Mesoamerica one, the image even say that they are from Sinaloa.

The record from Nicaragua (also not Mesoamerica) is very insteresting, as with 81.2 kg, it is the heaviest jaguar recorded in Central America (from Guatemala to Panama), and as heavy as the biggest pumas in Canada/Chile.

About Leopold, this is the original source, and been honest he doesn't state that the measurements are from Mexico per se, and they look more like those from South America if you compare it with other regions:

*This image is copyright of its original author


About this phrase in the pdf: "In Central America and southern Mexico, both sexes trend slightly larger than they do to the north or south". Certainly they did not read the documents, if not they will see that is the contrary, northern and southern jaguars are relative bigger than those from southern Mexico and Central America.
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(04-08-2020, 05:07 AM)TheNormalGuy Wrote: What do you mean : “time is short for me now” ?

Are you alright ?

Is this health related ? [i hope not]

No, don't worry. What I mean is that I am still working, but from my home. As many posters know, my job takes a lot of time and that is why I can't post as much as I would like.

So don't worry. Happy
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( This post was last modified: 04-08-2020, 05:37 AM by GuateGojira )

(04-08-2020, 04:51 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote: This was another estimation based for Mesoamerican jaguars in the Southern United States, although the methods for reaching that estimation are unclear


*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author
https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/99/3/724/4956954

The record in the image is not from Mesoamerica neather, is from New Mexico, so is related with the northern jaguar population (north Mexico, Texas and Arizona).

The document in PDF is from Brazil, out of question. Even then, good information.
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(04-08-2020, 05:35 AM)GuateGojira Wrote:
(04-08-2020, 04:51 AM)OncaAtrox Wrote: This was another estimation based for Mesoamerican jaguars in the Southern United States, although the methods for reaching that estimation are unclear


*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author
https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/99/3/724/4956954

The record in the image is not from Mesoamerica neather, is from New Mexico, so is related with the northern jaguar population (north Mexico, Texas and Arizona).

The document in PDF is from Brazil, out of question. Even then, good information.
Thanks for the clarification regarding the geography of Mesoamerica, I'm actually originally from South America myself so we tend to confuse all the regional names at times. I was treating the jaguars from Central America, and southern North America as one group under the 'Mesoamerican' category.
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