America’s only known wild jaguar caught on camera in Arizona

CREDIT: Conservation CATalyst via Facebook

TUCSON, Ariz. (WCMH)–There is only one known wild jaguar living in the United States.

On Wednesday, two conservation groups released the first-ever video of the big cat, called “El Jefe,” roaming the Santa Rita Mountains.

Conservation CATalyst and the Center for Biological Diversity said they have determined that El Jefe is an “adult male jaguar, currently in prime condition.”

The jaguar has been photographed repeatedly by remote sensor cameras in the Santa Rita mountains over the past few years.

The Center for Biological Diversity said he is the only verified jaguar in the United States since a cat named “Macho B” was euthanized as a result of capture-related injuries in March 2009.

Jaguars are solitary creatures, the Center said.

The cats once lived throughout the American Southwest, from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon to the mountains of Southern California and as far east as Louisiana.

Jaguars disappeared from their U.S. range over the past 150 years.

The last verified female jaguar in the country was shot by a hunter in 1963 in Arizona’s Mogollon Rim, the Center said. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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