T h e    D a y    A    J a g u a r    G o t     A    L i t t l e    T o o    F r i e n d l y

Sue is using delicate nets to catch birds, which are given a numbered leg-band, then released. She has dozens of nets hidden in the forest on either side of a long road, so she can catch and re-catch the same birds over time to learn whether they will cross the road, or simply avoid it. Some of our colleagues have found that many rainforest birds avoid pastures and clearings, and we suspect that even narrow roads could be a barrier to their movements.

One morning, as we were checking Sue’s nets, we heard a deep grunt. We walked out of the forest onto the road and there, just at our feet, the ground had been ripped up. Sue bent down to look and came up with a big claw sheath in her hands, about an inch long. I gasped—a jaguar had been sharpening its claws in the ground only moments earlier. We never saw him, fortunately, and we’re still hoping he doesn’t set up his territory right in the middle of Sue’s study area!

Now that you’ve heard about our friendly jaguars, you’ll be ready for next time when I tell you about the cuddly snakes.

Bill’s Journals A Day In The Amazon Rainforest    1     2     3     4