Sometimes, all it takes for a jaguar to get its meal is just one bite. National geographic has come up with a new exclusive video of a male jaguar taking down a huge crocodile with just one bite at the Brazilian pantanal wetlands in central Brazil. It is not an unusual thing for a jaguar to hunt around waters. Of all the big cats, jaguars are the best aquatic hunters. They can literally kill anything that they come across, anything on the river banks or busking on the sand. All the vertebrate species that live in the jaguar’s natural habitat form its potential prey
This jaguar is swimming close to the river banks hunting for pray. It gets out of the water to close in to the prey and then gets back into the water when it nears its target. It does not make any splashes on the water when hunting so that it can remain undetected. It swims slowly and crawls quietly. The jaguar would rather make its moves partially submerged in the water where it can cover its footage than walk on the bank where it can be seen. In stead of crossing where it can be seen, the jaguar opts for the long way round so that it pounds undetected. Its tactics revolve around wits than strength.
There are two crocodiles on a sandbank, all the way in the middle of the river which it identifies and tries to outwit. The jaguar can kill all sorts of animals ranging from armadillos weighing 1kg to cows weighing 450 kgs. It walks along their trails, taking time to watch and listen. Once it identifies its prey, it takes the long way to make sure that it arrives unnoticed. It is also interesting that jaguars hunt for all sorts of prey. Whether aquatic, land based, nocturnal or daytime feeders, everything is on its meal list. When hunting for daytime animals, it works during the day and hunts at night for nocturnal animals.
Crocodiles are aquatic reptiles but the jaguar stalks them perfectly in their own habitat. This has to be a lengthy procedure since the crocodile can decide to get into the water or fight back. The jaguar can swim in the water but it cannot stay long submerged or fighting underwater since it doesn’t breathe in the water. Its main goal is therefore to kill the prey while it’s still on the land. The jaguar is also not afraid of numbers and can pound even when the target is backed up. In this amazing video, there are two crocodiles but it keeps on hunting uninterrupted. When the other crocodile gets into the water, the isolated one is found helplessly. The jaguar swims across the river to the sandbank and gets out of the water undetected. The jaguar swims from the back of the crocodile to lay a good ambush. It is tactical and fast enough to make two perfect moves towards the reptile. When the crocodile notices the jaguar, it responds by trying to pledge quickly into the water but it’s already too late. The jaguar grips the crock perfectly at the back of the skull, with just one bite and kills it without much struggle.
The skull is a vulnerable position for most reptiles. A good bite on the back of the skull or neck can easily destabilize the central nervous system. When the jaguar takes hits the crocodile, it’s immediately destabilized and carried away with absolutely no resistance. Unlike other big cats such as lions, leopards and tigers which target the neck or the throat to kill their prey, jaguars often kill their prey by biting hard between the ears through the skull. This is a tactical move that needs a lot of speed and perfection. It is however an effective way of killing preys instantly.
The jaguar does not eat its catch on the kill scene. It carries the crocodile carcass away off to eat at its place of convenience. It is more comfortable eating the catch at its residence than around potential enemies. When the jaguar kills on the open grass, it often carries the prey further to the hidden places where it can feed undisturbed. Sometimes, the jaguar can even drag its catch for miles before it feeds on it.