First-ever Jaguar Cub Born by Artificial Insemination Was Eaten By The Mother
The world’s first jaguar cub that had been born through artificial insemination was entirely consumed by his mom two days after it came to this world.
Yet, the team of expert vets who carried out the experiment at the Sao Paulo’s Mata Ciliar wildlife center in Brazil are hopeful that future procedures of this kind will bring more encouraging results.
The significance of the successful artificial insemination of five-year-old Bianca lies in the fast decreasing numbers of jaguars in the wild.
According to UNILAD’s Emily Murray, the healthy female cub was born on February 16th this year, 104 days after her mom’s successful artificial insemination. The historic moment was caught on camera.
At first, it seemed that the first-time mom was deeply attached to her baby, as she was licking it all over and giving it the best care she could.
Regrettably, two days later something in Bianca’s head snapped and she ate her baby. Entirely. Not a single bone was left to remind of the cub’s existence.
“We don’t know why and cannot say if it was killed by the mother because it was not seen on the monitors on the second day,” Mata Ciliar press officer was quoted as saying.
Sad as the incident is, we should mention that big cats do sometimes eat their young, both in captivity and in the wild.
The project for artificial insemination of jaguars was launched in 2017 by scientists at the Centre for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife (CREW) and a leading researcher in the field, Regina Paz, from Brazil’s Mata Grosso Federal University (FUMG).
Out of the five female jaguars that had been picked to be artificially inseminated, only Bianca managed to deliver a healthy cub, although she was quick to take it back to where it came from. Scientists vow to carry out more big cats artificial insemination attempts this year.