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Recreating Nature Indoors

Ever wonder who made the dioramas in our mammal halls? Read all about the artists who created these wonderful scenes. Learn more >

The Making of a Diorama

The Habitat Views video considers ways of looking at dioramas today, and documents the creation of several new displays. Take a look over on our  YouTube channel >



Panthera onca (Linnaeus, 1758)

Jaguar diorama in the North American Mammal Hall


 Peloncillo Mountains, South eastern Arizona

Background artist:

 Robert Russell Reid

Jaguars are solitary. Male and female interact only during mating and the female raises her young alone. Jaguars may have a territory as small as three miles in diameter but may roam up to 200 square miles in search of food. Jaguars run swiftly but tire quickly. They climb trees well and are proficient swimmers.

Jaguars were revered in many indigenous American cultures. For the Maya, the jaguar was the God of the Underworld.

Biological Information

Range map for the jaguar


Central America and coastal Mexico


Evergreen tropical forests but formerly subtropical dry forests and desert scrub




From tapirs to turtles but concentrating on the larger mammalian species in their home range

Further information about this species may be found on the Animal Diversity Web page for jaguar.