Our mission during my trip was to set up a new network of camera traps in order to monitor and identify the local jaguar population.
The jaguar is the third biggest cat in the world (after the tiger and the lion) and is the largest cat in the Americas. As the rainforest’s top predator, they keep populations of other species in check and are therefore an essential part of the web of life in a healthy, balanced forest.
But deforestation for logging and to clear space for cattle ranching is impacting these beautiful animals. It’s isolating their populations – making breeding harder – and depleting the wild prey available to them, which in turn can lead them to hunt livestock and bring them into conflict with farmers, where they’re often killed.