October 9, 2013
I was happy to have our resident vaquero Laqui Duarte accompany me this month. We began our journey at Los Pavos and ended close to the Northern Jaguar Reserve’s entrance at La Ventana. We were able to identify a new jaguar and retrieved photos of “Caza,” a female jaguar that we have previously photographed. The change of seasons was very striking, as we witness the days growing a little shorter, temperatures dropping to something more comfortable, and the arroyos brimming with water.
While we were en route to Los Pavos, we found Adam’s campsite. He is the ornithologist who is banding birds as part of our continuing molt-migration study. It seemed that everything was going well as migratory birds are now arriving on the reserve and more species are being recorded each day. When we eventually arrived at Los Pavos, we lingered in the canyon to watch for Military macaws (Ara militaris), yet weren’t able to hear them on this occasion.
We retrieved a humorous photo from a camera at La Ventana that revealed one of Laco’s cows with a bobcat walking behind her. This caught my attention because they did not seem to bother each other. Other interesting images include videos of a mountain lion drinking water from an arroyo at Dubaral, a family of javelina on the path toward Los Pavos, and a bobcat cub pictured with its mother (view here).
We also encountered some reptiles, among them was a horned lizard. It was on one of the trails at Los Pavos, and I almost stepped on it since its colors are well camouflaged against the ground. We found a water snake eating a frog along the Arroyo Brasilar at Babisal. It jumped out quickly when I stepped on a rock, and Laqui spotted it. I took some photos before it hid itself again. Surprisingly, we were also able to see a desert tortoise, which is an endangered species in Mexico and the U.S.
Until next time,
Daniela Gutiérrez has worked on the Northern Jaguar Reserve and Viviendo con Felinos ranches since 2011. As a jaguar guardian, she maintains an extensive network of motion-triggered cameras on the reserve and ranches, inventories the ecological health of the land and water, and patrols the area to keep out poachers.