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 Jaguar figurines

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Palustris

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Country/State : Canada
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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:49 am

Hi bjarki12, much appreciated! Glad to be here. You're all a great bunch of people.

I see you're from Texas. I've always wanted to go to Texas, the Lone Star State! Love the flag. One day.....one day.....

I like your Avatar. What kind of brown bear figure is that?  I love bears too, especially Alaskan Brown bears and Polar bears.
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bjarki12

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jul 20, 2016 7:19 pm

Hi Palustris - glad you like it here!  It's a great forum.

Yes, your post actually got me interested in looking up the history of jaguars here in Texas.  They were hunted out, sadly, but it's always intriguing to learn that your home used to be wilder than you realized. I didn't find much new information this time, but they're still seen every once in a while in Arizona.  While reading Audubon's mammals a few years ago, I read that Sam Houston, our first president and governor, encountered a jaguar not far from where I grew up. I guess their diet would have been pretty different than it is in South America - maybe white-tailed deer, maybe mule deer further west, and no shortage of smaller animals. In Houston's account, they killed one of his horses, and we certainly had no shortage of feral horses and cattle here back then. I can't imagine them hunting full-grown bison, but I guess the younger ones wouldn't have been out of the question. It's hard to imagine how different the ecosystem must have been just 150 years go.

You might find this interesting: A few years back, I talked with a zoo director who used to be involved with a government project relocating cougars from Texas to Florida to boost the population of the Florida Panther (which I had previously thought was a distinct sub-species, but I guess they decided that reducing inbreeding was better than preserving genetic uniqueness?  I don't know), and he told me that once down near the Texas/Mexico border, he saw a big cat that, in the dark, he thought looked a lot stockier than a cougar, and when he shined a flashlight on it, he thought its eyes looked jaguar like.  He said he was probably just hopeful and that it wasn't really a jaguar, but I enjoyed hearing the story anyway.

The brown bear is one of my own sculptures.  I did model it on pictures of Kodiak bears, but since I was not very confident of my sculpting abilities at the time, I decided that thinking of it as a generic brown bear was probably safer.  Here's a link: http://sts-forum.forumieren.de/t8819-brown-bear?highlight=brown+bear Glad you like it!
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Palustris

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:44 pm

Yes, at one time jaguars were very numerous in Texas and Arizona. Unfortunately they were hunted to what they thought was extinction. This may be correct and perhaps the jaguar spotted and photographed by Warner Glenn in March of 1996 was a Mexican jaguar that wandered up north. But, this is always just speculation and indeed this could have been a very rare Arizona jaguar. Either way, they are very slowly growing in numbers again in the borderland states.

Here are three excellent books I have on jaguars from Texas and Arizona if you are interested on doing some further reading. The first book is actually titled, "Borderlands Jaguars" (This is the best book of the three and is a proper study/analysis of the jaguar in these areas), then "Ambushed on the Jaguar Trail" and then "Eyes of Fire: Encounter with a borderlands jaguar" - this book was actually written by Warner Glenn after his sighting back in 1996. The last two are less scientific than the first one.







You are right, they preyed on deer and peccary mostly, but also took armadillos, prairie dogs, coyotes, bighorn sheep, jackrabbits, roadrunners and even bobcats and mountain lions. i know there are a few reported cases of jaguars killing and eating pumas in Brazil and Venezuela.

That's a great story about that zoo director. That would have been an awesome encounter!

I love your sculpture! How do you guys make these sculptures?? I have to find out how, so I can start making them myself one day. This way you can make the animal to your own specifications. By the way, I have that same tiger figure you have in that last photo sitting beside your unpainted bear sculpture.
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bjarki12

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:10 am

Thanks for the reading recommendations! I'll see if I can track down Borderlands Jaguars. Interesting to hear about the jaguar's diet in this area, too. I've wondered who kept the javelina (peccary) population in check (now it seems mostly humans do). Do you know if they ranged far enough east to prey on alligators? I thought I once read that the population ranged into Louisiana, but I can't remember where I read it.

As for preying on cougars, it doesn't seem too surprising given the jaguar's greater size and the fact that other large cats in other parts of the world prey on smaller cats. But as an interesting contrast, Andrew Lang, in the Red Book of Animal Stories, recounts several pieces of South American folklore in which pumas attack and kill jaguars. Again, I think it's mostly folklore, so it's worth taking with a grain of salt, but it's interesting. I enjoy reading up on the folklore and historical sides of natural history.

Glad you like the bear! As for learning how to sculpt, there are some incredible sculptors on this forum, and their posts contain a huge amount of information and advice on how to sculpt better. That's mostly how I've learned.
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Palustris

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Thu Jul 21, 2016 2:14 pm

You're right again. Jaguars existed in many of the southern states, including Louisiana, Arkansas and even Florida at one time. During those times they most definitely would have preyed on alligators. The Jaguar's massive head and powerful jaws were a direct result of evolution through a "neotropical reptile" diet. They preyed and still prey on lizards, turtles, alligators, caiman, crocodiles and snakes. Hard shells and tough hides have forced the jaguars to develop thick, cone-like canines/teeth and "more powerful jaws due to the development of a wider zygomatic arch and thicker sagital crest/head and neck muscles. So what you end up with is a huge head with an explosive biting power that can pulverize bones/hard shells with an anatomy that can support and back it up.

I never heard of Andrew Lang before, but I have Richard Perry's book "World of the Jaguar" where he sites similar stories from explorers like Percy Fawcett says that same thing about pumas attacking jaguars. However, the author says that Fawcett had little to no knowledge about jaguars or wildlife in general. I''ll never say never, but I would find this hard to believe, especially in Brazil where jaguars would be almost 3 times larger than pumas! In the southern US they are almost of equal size because jaguars are smaller, but the jaguar is still a more robust and powerfully build cat. That being said, the puma is no slouch himself! They are very powerful and extremely agile.

I'll have to visit the sculptor forum and learn how to do this myself. I've never done anything like that before, so it should be a challenge.
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baltimore zoo



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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Tue Sep 06, 2016 4:52 am

Love the repaint Schleich jags! Absolutely LOVE the Chinese sculptors tigers, lions, bull elephant and Indian rhino! Those are incredible pieces!
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Palustris

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Tue Sep 06, 2016 10:26 pm

I'm with you "Baltimore Zoo". I would LOVE to have all of them, but that would literally cost me thousands of dollars! Each one is around $2.000. But, they certainly are MAGNIFICENT!!!!
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bjarki12

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Sep 07, 2016 12:58 am

Palustris -
I just finished reading Borderlands Jaguars. Thanks for the recommendation! I really enjoyed it. It looks like the Texas population was hunted out a bit too long ago to get a whole lot of really reliable information (more's the pity), but I'm really glad to have read such a good introduction to the topic of Jaguars in the Southwestern US. I see that David Brown has written several other books on wildlife in the Southwest, and am looking forward to finding a copy of his book on grizzlies.

The models you've supplied those links to are phenomenal, by the way. Thanks for sharing!
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Kikimalou
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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Sep 07, 2016 6:36 am

I'm so glad Bjarki12 posted something today here, it helped me to discover a great topic full of knowledge and engouement. I'm happy to meet you here Palustris, welcome sunny

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Palustris

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Fri Sep 09, 2016 11:43 pm

Sorry Bjarki12, it got really busy here over the last couple of weeks. I'm glad you enjoyed the book. I thought you would. Hopefully they allow the jaguars to make a comeback into the Southern US, but I fear it just may be jaguars from Mexico and not the original Texas jaguars. But....I guess that is better than NO jaguars, right?

Bonjour Christophe!! Thank you for the kind greeting! I'm glad you're enjoying the posts.
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Palustris

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:52 am

Great News!!! LCY contacted me today and said he had a model available of the "Jaguar vs Caiman"! I can't believe it. I sent him a message in December of 2015 and he just messaged me. He said he was gone, but is back and will be back on this forum to post his models.

He has the resin model, but still has to paint it. He will send me photos when it is done and we can then discuss buying and shipping! Applause

I AM PUMPED!!! Very Happy
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pipsxlch

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:01 am

@bjarki12 wrote:

You might find this interesting: A few years back, I talked with a zoo director who used to be involved with a government project relocating cougars from Texas to Florida to boost the population of the Florida Panther (which I had previously thought was a distinct sub-species, but I guess they decided that reducing inbreeding was better than preserving genetic uniqueness?  I don't know)

I'm a native Floridian, and have heard of the plight of the Florida panther all my life. Habitat destruction and fragmentation has been their demise. (they never say, but I'm sure bounty hunting back in the day also took its toll)

Back before the overpopulation and clearcutting of the eastern US, the cougar/panther/puma/mountain lion population encompassed most of the Gulf Coast and eastern part of the continent. Pumas require many square miles of territory per cat, and young animals disperse when they leave mama- the males especially would often travel hundreds of miles to find territories of their own. So while there were fairly distinct populations- in the case of the Florida cats given a subspecies of their own- they intergraded, blending from one to another. It would not be impossible for an Arkansas cat to have ended up in Florida, and for one of his kits to end up in North Carolina, and one of HIS in Maine. (a Florida cat was recently killed in the Carolinas)

20 or so years ago, the population of Florida cats was tightly restricted to the deep Everglades- not much land for a puma population! They had been being pushed there for decades, and inbreeding had taken its toll. It had reached the point that almost all the remaining males were sterile, and the total population was down to about 2 dozen. The Texas cats are the most closely related remaining population to the Florida cats, so a couple were captured and released here.
The infusion of new blood has done wonders; the population is now 125 or so cats, and with greater efforts at collaring and tracking, they're seeing just how far some of the cats are traveling. There have been several in my area, about 250 miles from the Glades, and others in North Florida a few hundred miles further and even into surrounding states. The so called hybrid cats are fully fertile and healthy.

Now if the government starts trying to protect remaining natural lands and providing nature corridors for wildlife, instead of pushing for all land to be drained and built over... (the current governor of Florida is pushing for state/government protected lands to be turned over to developers and turned into resorts, cattle pasturage, mining or logging tracts)
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SUSANNE
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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:56 am

Thankyou for this interesting info, Pip !

@pipsxlch wrote:


Now if the government starts trying to protect remaining natural lands and providing nature corridors for wildlife, instead of pushing for all land to be drained and built over... (the current governor of Florida is pushing for state/government protected lands to be turned over to developers and turned into resorts, cattle pasturage, mining or logging tracts)

Homo sapiens is a horrible, frightening invasive species Sad


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Philter4

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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Thu Jan 26, 2017 1:23 am

@pipsxlch wrote:
Now if the government starts trying to protect remaining natural lands and providing nature corridors for wildlife, instead of pushing for all land to be drained and built over... (the current governor of Florida is pushing for state/government protected lands to be turned over to developers and turned into resorts, cattle pasturage, mining or logging tracts)


I have lived in Florida for over 30 years, and worked with the panthers, though I have only limited hands on with FL panthers, I do have lots of experience with them in general as well as other exotic animals.  

This statement is an exaggeration or a misstatement and simply not true, the Governor Rick Scott has spent record amounts on the restoration of freshwater springs, has spent about the same percentage wise (considering the downturn in the economy, so the dollar amount is the less but the percentage is the same as a percentage of budget) as both Bush and Crist, the previous governors.  

While it is true that that the state has passed a law to sell of between $40 million and $70 million worth of land, it is misreported that it was protected lands, at no time have any protected lands ever been considered and the money raised is going to be used by the Department of Environmental Protection, Florida's version of the EPA, it is going to help restore habitat. The same goes for logging and mining resources, at no time is protected lands or habitats a consideration, only public lands that are not restricted use lands.

Don't get me wrong, I believe that more could be done, as an environmentalist by trade I have a different view, these things are sometimes (as in almost always) reported from a political view, and as the newspapers are very liberal, they slant the story to make others out to be the bad guys, when in reality, both political parties are responsible.  The problem comes down to money and the population, when the economy is slow, money is tight, the people come first and the environment second.  Along with this as more and more people come, what are we to do, turn them away?  Tell them that because of habitat fragmentation we will no longer build homes and all of the businesses that provide jobs and go along with all of this?  In reality the only way to stop most of this would be to reduce the population, which is not really an option, other solutions must be provided, and blaming an administration, without finding out all of the facts, is not helping it only deflects the issue.
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SUSANNE
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PostSubject: Re: Jaguar figurines   Thu Jan 26, 2017 9:02 am

@Philter4 wrote:

..... Along with this as more and more people come, what are we to do, turn them away?  Tell them that because of habitat fragmentation we will no longer build homes and all of the businesses that provide jobs and go along with all of this?  .....

Yes !!! At some time you will have to do it anyway, so why not now, when there is still something to save ? Rolling Eyes

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