Jaguars are the only big cat in North and South America and are the third largest species of cat in the world behind Tigers and Lions. A major distinction between the big cat family and the small cat family is that big cats can’t purr but can roar, and small cats can’t roar but purr.
A jaguar’s coat can be one of two distinct color morphs. The most commonly seen is the yellow “spotted” coat. The black coat is more common in the thick jungles near the equator and is caused by a high amount of melanin, hence the term “melanistic.” Melanistic jaguars still have rosettes like their spotted friends, but they are much more difficult to see. Our jaguar, Nacho, is a melanistic Jaguar, whereas Libre, Nacho’s brother, is spotted.