PRISM Director in the News

First Picture of Jaguar on Barro Colorado Island, Panama!

Jacalyn and Gregory Willis.

There is a jaguar on Barro Colorado Island in Panama. This photo was taken on April 20, 2009 and is the first photo of a jaguar on this Smithsonian Research station since scientists first explored it in 1923.

The photos were all taken with the camera in the exact same position, so you can see the relative sizes of each critter.

In 1983, Greg Willis was the first to see a jaguar on BCI, and now 25 years later he finally has a photo. Sightings of jaguar have been very few, and the species is highly endangered in Panama. Occasionally jaguars swim to BCI from across Gatun Lake and visit on the island for months at a time, but are almost never seen by the scientists studying there. The photo below is from the Willis' study in another Central American country with jaguars, Belize.

Most Recent Update:
The jaguar was photographed again 12 days later on a different trail in a different part of the island.