Camera traps bring you closer to the secretive natural world and are an important conservation tool to study wildlife. This week we’re meeting the most iconic species of the Americas: the jaguar. The jaguar is not only an apex predator but it is also deeply rooted in the cultural and natural heritage of the countries where it lives in. This feline ranges from the Mexico-US border in North America, to Argentina in South America. They are the third biggest cat in the world after tigers and lions and like other big cats, the jaguar is capable of roaring and does so to warn territorial and mating competitors away. Jaguars are stalk-and-ambush predators and they are at the top of their food chain, meaning they don’t have any predators in the wild. They eat a wide variety of prey, over 85 species have been reported in their diet. They prefer large prey such as giant anteaters, tapirs, capybaras and deer, but they also prey upon other animals such as wild boars, peccaries and caimans. And unlike many other cats, jaguars are great swimmers; they even ambush their prey in rivers by leaping into the water and catching them. Jaguars are classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN and its population is rapidly declining. Since the 1880s, they’ve lost more than half their territory. They are losing habitat to agriculture and livestock which can fragment their habitats and leave cats isolated and unable to travel and find mates to breed which decreases…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer