kabalebo.com newsletter 12 - December, 2016
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Wild cats living in Kabalebo
There are 6 wild cat species living in the Amazon basin;
  • the Oncilla
  • the Margay
  • the Ocelot
  • the Jaguarundi
  • the Puma
  • the Jaguar
From these 6 cat species 3 have been seen frequently in the Kabalebo area: Ocelot, Puma and the Jaguar. They are either seen via a trophy cam or during a trip.

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Kabalebo Nature Resort
The first wild cat seen quite often near the lodge is the ocelot. First of all, the Ocelot (Leopardus pardalis) is a wild and shy cat, living inside the forest.

Seeing a wild ocelot out in the open is something you will rarely see, but since April 2013 we are observing one wild ocelot: Lotje near the lodge. She has declared the area surrounding the Main Lodge into her own and she gave us a glimpse inside her mysterious life.

With the help of Trap Cams, our assistants working 24 - hours a day, we were able to follow her whereabouts. Once a year she gives birth to one kitten and takes care of it for the next 5 - 6 months until it is able to care for itself. Ocelots are solitary animals and do not tolerate others unless it is mating season.

Ocelots weigh between 10 - 15 kg. Rodents, frogs, iguana's, birds or rabbits are the ocelot's main meal to survive.
Kabalebo Nature Resort
Another wildcat that has also been spotted quite often in Kabalebo is the Jaguar (Panthera Onca). Their territory is larger than of the ocelots. They are also solitary animals and rather avoid humans than waiting for an encounter.

The Jaguar also feels right at home inside the forest, but seeing one during a hike is like winning the lottery ticket as they rather stay invisible until the crowd has passes by. Unlike the ocelots jaguars are looking for bigger preys; deers, capybara's, tamandua's, paca's, armadillo's, turtles or caimans.

Jaguars can weigh between 100 - 150 kg. The Jaguar is the largest wild cat living in the America's and the third largest in the world after the Tiger and the Lion.

Even though the Jaguar is on top of the food chain they are considered as near threatened species. Habitat loss and being hunted down for their fur is one of the main reasons.
Kabalebo Nature Resort
The Puma (Puma concolor) is one wild cat that also likes to stay under the radar. They share the same territory as the ocelots and the jaguar, but like to avoid both of them.

Unlike the Ocelot and the Jaguar, the Puma lacks the rosettes, used as camouflage. The Puma is considered as the second heaviest wild cat of the America's after the Jaguar.

This wild cat is a secretive solitary animal, one that prefers to stay secluded. Puma's like to ambush their prey (surprise attack) and with their slender build body they are quite capable of this surprise attack.

The area surrounding the lodge of Kabalebo is only primary forest, giving these wild cats the freedom too to explore their territories without being disturbed.

Written by Armida Madngisa / Photo's: Armida Madngisa & Keiran Samuels