One Panthera onca and Six Jaguars: Jaguar Conservation in the Anthropocene

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University of Guelph

Jaguars, the Panthera onca species, are top feline predators in 18 Latin American countries. Jaguars are also increasingly threatened by climate change and anthropogenic activity. This study provides insight into Shuar, farmer, conservationists, and conservation volunteers’ perceptions of jaguars in Ecuador, a country where limited research on jaguars exists. Informed by ethnographic accounts, multispecies ethnography, conservation, Anthropocene, and affect theory literature in anthropology, this research presents six social constructions emerging from one Panthera onca species - the apex predator, affective, threatening, semi-wild, digital, and charismatic jaguars. These jaguars demonstrate how we affect and are affected by an elusive Amazonian predator. These social constructions shed light on how multispecies relationships, worlds, domesticated and wild distinctions are implicated in environmental and jaguar conservation models in a localised Amazonian Anthropocene and the Anthropocene on a planetary scale.

Jaguar, Panthera onca, Conservation, Anthropocene, Affect, Multispecies ethnography, Anthropology, Ecuador, Macas, Conservationists, Shuar, Farmers, Conservation volunteers, Predator, Social constructions, Amazonia, Amazon, Amazonian Anthropocene