Home*Cover Story*News

No evidence to support sightings of a jaguar in Palo Seco

There has been no evidence to support claims that a jaguar has been living in the Palo Seco area.

That’s according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries (MALF), which said it launched extensive investigations into the reports of the sighting of an exotic animal in Palo Seco.

The MALF said that over the last seven days, they held coordinated efforts amongst several stakeholders, including its Game Warden Unit, the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, the Emperor Valley Zoo and the Zoological Society, to effectively investigate the claims.

In a media release, MALF said it utilized specialized surveillance and trapping equipment which was brought into the area where the alleged sighting took place; bait was also placed along the tracking scenarios.

“To date, NO evidence has been found to support the claims that a live exotic animal not indigenous to this land is occupying the area,” it said.

The Ministry said all camps linked to the investigation were dismantled on Sunday, 11th June 2023.

MALF reminded the public of the dangers and implications of the importation and trafficking of illegal wildlife.

Kazim Hosein, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries, commended all the teams on their efforts and once again reiterated the call to be vigilant against traffickers.

“Introducing animals not indigenous to the land into our habitat will disturb and disrupt the ecosystem; the effects can be disastrous to lives and livelihoods.

“I once again implore the public to be mindful of the consequences of the illegal wildlife trade; we owe it to the next generation to act responsibly,” he said.

The public is encouraged to contact the Wildlife Section of the Forestry Division at 225-3827/3828/3829 and 225-3835 if they have information on illegal animals.