See a Spotted Cat Hunt a Water Dinosaur in Brazil

Written by Angie Menjivar
Updated: February 26, 2023
© GoWildPhotography/
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Continue Reading To See This Amazing Video

Key Points

  • Unlike most felines irrespective of size, jaguars are fond of water and hunt in it too.
  • They are particularly fond of hunting caiman and are known to pounce on them with a bite to the back of the skull.
  • Following their attack, they then drag the alligatorid out of the water in the event of the hunt being a successful one.

This video starts with a shot of crocodile-infested water in Pantanal, Brazil. This wetland is known for housing the biggest concentration of crocodiles across the globe. It’s a place wildlife call home, including nearly 10 million caimans.

The camera is already zooming in when the video starts. After zeroing in on two caimans in the water, the videographer pans over to the left where a jaguar is crouching down in the brush with its gaze steady on the crocodiles.

Freshwater Crocodiles sunning themselves in the Windjana Gorge National Park, Kimberley, Western Australia.
When a caiman retreats underwater, it’s a different game altogether, unless they happen to be dealing with a jaguar

©Kirsty Nadine/

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Jaguars are fantastic swimmers, so braving the water as it pounces a croc is easy. They can dive down, wrestle their prey, and come up, dragging out their food source to land, where they can gobble it down. They have voracious and indiscriminate appetites — almost anything goes.

Jaguars kill with powerful bites, and much like the crocs, the one in this video is hunting and ready to chomp down. Their eyes are spectacular, able to gauge distances perfectly just before lunging forward. When a croc retreats underwater, it’s a different game altogether, but jaguars are unlike most cats. They welcome the water.

They are actually even better hunters at night. Their eyesight is super keen after the sun sets. Their eyes have a layer of tissue that serves to reflect light. During the day, it’s a bit different since their color and detail perception isn’t as sharp.

In this video, the jaguar keeps still for a few moments with the kind of stare that would scare anyone. The crocodile unknowingly approaches the location where the jaguar has been lying in wait. The jaguar shifts its body slightly to face the crocodile. It looks like it’s ready to pounce. Just then, the crocodile notices the presence of the jaguar and quickly retreats, leaving a splash of water in its wake.

The next shot is again of the jaguar moving ever so slowly as it approaches a crocodile lying outside of the water. It’s extremely stealthy as it moves each paw forward, keeping its eyes on its target. It decides again to run and lunges forward, but the crocodile sees it and jumps into the water to save itself.

For a few seconds, both the jaguar and crocodile are submerged. Then, the jaguar emerges from the water without its catch. It stays in the water for a few more moments, looking around for the next croc to hunt.

Watch this big cat leap into croc-infester water to find its meal.

Do Jaguars Often Attack Caiman?

Largest Jaguar - Jaguar Header
Jaguars’ powerful jaws and upper body strength make it possible for them to hunt large caiman effectively

©Adalbert Dragon/

Yes, they do. Unlike tigers, pumas, or lions which are unlikely to dive into the water to hunt any unsuspecting crocodilians or alligatorids lurking beneath the surface. Jaguars’ upper body strength and the power of their jaws give them the upper hand in this regard. Their jaws are capable of exerting twice the force of a tiger‘s and have a bite force of 1,500 psi. Their ability to bite into the brain of their prey is a direct result of such power and plays a key role in enabling them to take on caimans twice their size and drag them out of the water.

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Fastest Cats - Jaguar
Jaguars are fearsome predators and will hunt anything from frogs, fish, and reptiles to livestock, cows, and deer.
© GoWildPhotography/

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About the Author

Angie is a writer with over 10 years of experience developing content for product and brand reviews, focusing much of her time on animals of all types. A cat owner herself, she enjoys writing articles on beloved pets that both inform and entertain her audience.

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