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Jaguars in Belize

Belize jaguar

Belize hosts one of the most healthy populations of jaguars in Central America, with an estimated 500 cats living within its borders. Jaguars are protected, and this has led to an increase in their numbers. A jaguar needs a large hunting territory to survive, so the increasing numbers have caused the cats to migrate and spread out in search of new territory, and this has inevitably led to conflict with humans.

Recently, an issue as surfaced with the cattle ranchers in western Belize near the town of Crooked Tree, where there have been 15 cows taken by jaguars in the past few months. The ranchers are in an uproar and have complained to the government that they will soon have no choice but to start shooting jaguars if they continue to affect their livelihood.

In response, the government has sent their ‘Jaguar Officer’, a special post in charge of protecting the cats, to remedy the situation. Below is a link to an article covering the story, outlining some interesting measures the officer is proposing to protect the cattle.

http://edition.channel5belize.com/archives/111131