For about 70 years, jaguars were absent from Iberá Park in northeastern Argentina’s Corrientes province. To rectify this, conservationists reintroduced three jaguars into the park in 2021, followed by seven more. In July 2022, two cubs were born from this reintroduced population. But experts say the key to successfully reinstating the species isn’t just about increasing the number of individuals — it’s also essential to expand the population’s genetic diversity. And so, to ensure the species’ survival, conservationists have taken bold measures. In March 2022, members of the NGO Rewilding Argentina moved a female jaguar (Panthera onca) named Mbarete, who’d been born in a reintroduction pen in Iberá in 2018, about 600 kilometers (370 miles) away to a forested enclosure in El Impenetrable National Park, in neighboring Chaco province. The point of the transfer was to see if Qaramta, the only male jaguar known to be in El Impenetrable at the time, might be interested in mating with her. As it turned out, he was. And Mbarete was also interested in Qaramta. The team lured Qaramta into Mbarete’s pen while she was in heat. The jaguars got to spend four days together before the team moved Mbarete into a 2-hectare (5-acre) enclosure, and released Qaramta. In September, Mbarete gave birth to two tiny cubs. Mbarete nursing her newborn cubs. Image by Tompkins Conservation. Then, in early November, the team got busy with travel arrangements again. Mbarete and her cubs would be transferred back to a reintroduction pen at Iberá Park,…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer

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