We were there a week after this on a photographic safari with Joseph Van Os - it was the talk of the Pantanal and so happy to see it, especially as we were at that exact spot and you don't mention here that Mick only has one eye...his left eye is blind.
Published September 25, 2013
Dramatic still images of a jaguar ambushing an unwary caiman in Brazil's Pantanal wetlands went viral on the web this month. National Geographic has exclusive video of the attack that reveals what the pictures only hint at.
With one bite, the big cat likely delivered an immediate blow to the caiman's central nervous system, leaving the animal unable to fight or flee, according to Luke Dollar, a conservation scientist who helps manage National Geographic’s Big Cats Initiative.
"This guy knew his business," said Dollar. Suffocating an animal with a bite to the neck is a classic big-cat maneuver, but caimans don’t have a discernable neck. So the jaguar—which has the strongest bite of any cat—went right for the skull.
"This guy got right in the thickest part of the brain case and sunk those teeth in," he said. "And that's pretty amazing when you consider a caiman’s brain is probably the size of a walnut."
Kedar Hippalgaonkar, of Berkeley, California, shot the footage while vacationing in Brazil with his wife, Parul Jain. The couple were hoping to spot some jaguars on an eight-hour boat tour of the Pantanal with ecotourism operator SouthWild.
And did they. The jaguar in the video—known to locals as Mick Jaguar—was the third they’d seen that day. When the jaguar went ashore, Hippalgaonkar said it became obvious that Mick was on the prowl.
"He's just crawling first, and then you can see him sort of in hunt mode," he said.
"You know he’s definitely going for something. Which is why we decided to wait there, before all the other boats came."
His footage reveals a predator picking its way along the riverbank in search of potential prey.
"He makes no noise whatsoever, even when he's swimming," he said.
The tour's boatman, who had logged thousands of hours watching jaguars, told Hippalgaonkar he’d never seen anything to rival Mick Jaguar’s stealthy strike.
i have an ambiguous feelings about this video. On the one hand, the jaguar is majestic and it is a fabulous hunt and he is also a great performer - probably he knew he was being watched, on the other hand, i always feel sorry for the prey, the caiman was so peacefully sunbathing, unaware...
WoW! It definitely takes guts to attack a crocodile in a river/water body where it is extremely lethal. This jaguar is one terrific personality. He sure gets my vote. And, of course, brilliant videography!
Mastery of Anatomy is not restricted to higher intelligences only, but appears to be a requirement to becoming an accomplished predator..
Here is an excellent example of how Brazil can take care of the illegal USA spying on the internet. Reach behind the dangerous enemy stealthily and destroy it before it can outline any reaction.
Something good, interesting, thank you for your contribution to our page. We hope your continuity of support to our page. I have been long years member of National Geographic Magazine member.
@Juan SkvarcaPantanal wetlands are not Rainforests, they are Pantanal wetlands.. surprise surprise!!
@Chanelle Beecher Pantanal is not a rainforest
That was the part when the Jaguar sunk its teeth into the top of the Caiman's head... Instant "lights out". Then, Mick Jaguar took home his prize.
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